6 Generous Ways to Help Your Neighbors

6 Generous Ways to Help Your Neighbors September 12, 2022

If you live next door to someone in need, you might feel called to help them. That’s a very loving mindset to have. You’ll make a difference in people’s lives by reaching out and offering your services to those around you. Here are six generous ways to help your neighbors. 

1. Bring Them Some Food

One of the easiest ways to connect with and help your neighbors is by offering a meal. Food allergies are common, so if you don’t know what your neighbor can eat, some safe bets usually include vegetable platters, roasted chicken and potatoes, or homemade popcorn drizzled with caramel. If they’re not limited by dietary restrictions, baking a pie is a warm gesture, or you could bring them a lasagna layered with their favorite ingredients. 

It’s OK if cooking isn’t your strong suit. Your neighbor will appreciate a store-bought tray of cookies or bottle of wine just as much as a homemade meal. The gesture itself is the most important thing.

2. Offer to Mow Their Lawn

Older adults may find lawn mowers heavy and unwieldy. Offer to mow your neighbor’s grass if they indicate they need help with it. While many people are embracing the natural glory of a yard full of native grasses, wildflowers and shrubs to help pollinators like bees and butterflies, some might still want to mow a play area or walkway around their house. 

Remember only to offer to mow if your neighbor talks about wanting to do it, or your helpful suggestion could come across as judgemental. If you use your neighbor’s lawn mower to tackle their yard, go the extra mile by cleaning it out and refilling it with gas when you’re done.

3. Help Them Declutter Their Home

It may not come as a surprise that 57% of people with garages don’t have room to park cars inside them. People tend to use garages as storage space when their house starts overflowing with junk.

You might be familiar with the buying-new-shoes-because-the-old-ones-are-lost routine, which spirals into an endless cycle of adding more stuff to the ever-growing pile. Is your neighbor struggling with this problem?

If so, you can help them declutter their home. It can be hard for a person to see their own possessions through an objective lens, so your outside perspective might help your neighbor realize that a pile of newspaper classifieds is not worth keeping. 

Your neighbor might be depressed or overworked and simply need an extra hand around the house. Either way, they’ll feel much better when they have a clean living space. 

4. Pick up Their Prescriptions

Is your neighbor too busy to go to the pharmacy? Are they homebound? If so, offer to pick up their medications for them. Some pharmacies often close right as people get off work, making it hard for people to get their prescriptions on time. 

You’d be doing your neighbor a valuable service by picking up something they need. Remember not to ask questions about what the medicine is for, as this might be an uncomfortable topic, especially if they’re already embarrassed about needing help. Show compassion by running this errand without prying and maybe picking them up a candy bar or some gum while you’re at the drugstore. 

5. Help Them Clean Their Car

Some people love this task and others loathe it. If you fall into the first category, offer to wash your neighbor’s car or clean out the interior. 

Parents’ cars are often repositories for Legos and pulverized cereal that somehow fell between the cracks and can get chaotic in record time. Do you own a hand vacuum and some trash bags? How about a garden hose? If so, you can tackle a messy car. 

Your neighbor will thank you for it.

6. Walk Their Dogs

Does your neighbor have a couple of boisterous labs that simply can’t get enough of going to the park? Perhaps you live next to an older adult or someone with health problems who lacks the energy for a walk. 

You could help tremendously by exercising their dogs for them. Plus, you’ll benefit from taking a walk in the fresh air and sunshine — or wind and snow, depending on the season — and you’ll make some new animal friends in the process. 

Love Your Neighbor as Yourself

Jesus told people to love their neighbors as much as they love themselves. Too often, however, people stay inside and don’t get to know the people living right next door. These six generous ways to help your neighbors will build a greater sense of community with the residents who call your neighborhood home.

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