Thanksgiving is a time for fun, good food, laughs and giving thanks. It's a time to gather with family, friends and loved ones to express how grateful we are for the good things in our lives. It’s also a time that most of us really want to give back. Read on for ways to give back in H-Town this holiday season. 

SUPPORT HOUSTON AREA FARMERS
Get your feel good on while enjoying a traditional harvest festival. Harvest the Block, which takes place November 18-19, is a street festival showcasing local farmers alongside activities for the kids, culinary demos and gardening classes. Plus, festivities include Harvest the Home, a new arts and crafts station for attendees to donate or create holiday baskets to families in need. 

SUPPORT OUR TROOPS
Our troops are at the forefront, helping us in more ways than we will ever know. If you'd like to support those who have returned home, Career Gear Houston helps local veterans with their transition back into the workplace.

DONATE BLOOD
While some may feel uncomfortable donating blood, it’s an incredibly rewarding way to give back. To change up the traditional way of donating, invite others to go with you or go solo during your lunch break. Click here to find an American Red Cross, Gulf Coast Regional Blood Bank or MD Anderson Blood Bank near you. Or, stop by your local hospital. 

CHARITABLE DONATIONS
I don't know about you, but some of the most significant gifts I’ve ever received came in the form of the giving that folds. The holidays are a busy time of year. If you can’t carve out time to volunteer, consider a charitable donation. Local organizations like Dress for Success, Gulf Coast Community Services Association or Houston Area Urban League, just to name a few, work one-on-one with people to provide career training, housing assistance and educational support. The best part is that they always accept monetary donations. 

DONATE OR VOLUNTEER AT A FOOD BANK
Instead of tossing extra canned goods or non-perishables you’ve been stocking up on (for next year), take them to your local food bank. You can drop items off or if you want to have some fun with it, arrange a time with the food bank for you and a few friends to stop by and stuff boxes. Get a group and add some music for a fun time and new way to get involved

SHOW SOME LOVE TO PETS
Take your kids, friends or family to a shelter and donate pet food to spread the Thanksgiving love to furry friends near you. Check out groups like the Houston Humane Society, Rescue Bank Houston or your favorite animal shelter. If you’re feeling extra generous, adopt a pet from a shelter. A new puppy may be just what your family needs to help bring everyone together this Thanksgiving.

STOP BY A SHELTER
Clothes you'll never wear again, school supplies or hygiene products are always in need at local shelters. If you would like to help others, but don’t have all day to spend volunteering at a shelter, this is a great way to give back. With organizations like Star of Hope, Salvation Army of Houston or Goodwill Houston, you can just stop by to drop off your items any day of the week.