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Meet the Neighbors Helping Neighbors — and learn how you can help

There are plenty of ways you — and your family — can volunteer in your neighborhood

by TODAY /  / Updated  / Source: TODAY

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There are few things in the world more rewarding than turning the act of caring into doing, and all this week, we've introduced you to people who embody that message.

With that in mind, here are a few simple ways you can get involved. You can also catch up on the week's stories below, in case you've missed any.

(TODAY's Neighbors Helping Neighbors program is created with our sponsor State Farm.)

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Call and ask how you can help

Sometimes it's as easy as picking up the phone. Senior centers and libraries are often looking for volunteers to help with ongoing programs or tasks. From reading to elementary students to leading a bingo class, there's lots of good work to be done.

Clean up a local park

Don't have anything going on one Saturday? Gather your neighbors, grab some tools and head down to the park down the street. Even if the job is as simple as changing garbage bags and throwing away some loose trash, the people who frequent the park will appreciate your effort.

Editor's note: Learn more about Bruno Serato's work feeding kids in need, along with his book "The Power of Pasta." All proceeds from the book will be donated to Caterina's Club, Serato's nonprofit.

Pass on the spirit of volunteering to the next generation

Beyond involving your neighbors, bring your kids, or younger members of the community, whenever you volunteer.

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If you feel they're of the age to contribute — and take something from the moment — then this will be a good opportunity to teach them a valuable lesson about caring and giving back. It's an investment that'll last a lifetime.

Donate old or unused items at a local clothing drop box

Look for boxes near your supermarket, or in and around nearby government buildings. Some boxes may accept items beyond clothing, including tablecloths, towels and bedding that can be reused and recycled.

Help an elderly neighbor with their household chores

Is your neighbor no longer able to shovel his or her driveway in the winter? Maybe they need a hand weeding their backyard in the summer. If so, offer up your services. Even if they decline your offer, they'll likely appreciate the fact that you care.

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