During the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it is important to pause and remember the importance of giving back to those who face challenges in our community. A little bit can go a long way; even the smallest effort can greatly impact your community. So, to help, we have created a list of wonderful and amazing charities that each have a unique story and are a worthy cause!
Whether you use this list to get more involved by volunteering your time with your family during the holidays or simply glance over and pick an organization to donate to, I hope you enjoy learning about Fairfield County Mom Contributor’s FAVORITE charities and organizations (mostly) local to Fairfield County.
Please note that there are many other deserving charities and organizations that are not listed here. This is just a list of the ones our contributors actively support!
HOMH (Help Our Military Heros)
HOMH is a nonprofit organization run out of Easton that provides fully equipped and adaptive minivans to deserving vets around the country. HOMH is donation driven, and 100% of public donations go toward purchasing modified minivans for our heroes! HOMH has donated 201 (and climbing) vans to help improve wounded military heroes’ lives through mobility and independence!
Many of our nation’s service men and women have sustained traumatic wounds and injuries while serving our county. These can result in the amputation of limbs, spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, and nervous system or immune system injuries. “HOMH recognizes their sacrifice and is dedicated to raising funds to purchase minivans adapted and customized to meet our heroes’ specific needs.” They hope that our wounded service men and women can return to their mobility and sense of independence they once had before being injured.
CPO Kenton Stacy, US NAVY, and his beautiful family are accepting a van donation in California. He was clearing a hospital in Syria when an IED seriously injured him. They have four children, and one is also in a wheelchair, so HOMH graciously awarded them a full-size Mercedes Sprinter van with a lift, and the family named it “The Stacy Bus!”
In Fairfield, Operation Hope’s programs and services focus on eliminating hunger and homelessness. They provide individuals and families the opportunity to experience much-needed change. Operation Hope’s food pantry feeds over 123,000 meals to neighbors in need and is stocked and run by generous donations and volunteers. Their Supportive Affordable Housing provides clean and safe rental housing for previously homeless families and individuals. Their Homeless Response Center also provides outreach, crisis intervention, case management, and counseling services. This all-encompassing organization does so much good for individuals in the community.
IMPACT stands for Individuals Making Positive Advances in the Community of Trumbull. They have over 100 families in Trumbull who help support the community through hands-on, monthly projects and collections. Some examples of these activities include the assembly and donation of Cold Care Kits to The Bridgeport Rescue Mission, foster care kits for Family and Child Aid, Blessing Bags, cooking kits, and care caddies for Operation Hope. Community nominations also help to support neighbors who need temporary assistance due to unforeseen circumstances.
The Tiny Miracles Foundation
The Tiny Miracles Foundation is a charity dedicated to helping families with premature babies in Fairfield and New Haven Counties. The premature birth of a baby can be isolating, confusing, and frightening, so their goal is to support and assist families during this difficult time. TTMF’s programs offer comfort, support, guidance, and hope through on-site programs at six partner hospitals and community-based services.
Al’s Angels “supports children and families battling cancer, rare blood diseases, natural disasters, and severe financial hardship.” The organization strives to help families who are wiped out financially and need help bringing joy to their children’s lives. They rely on volunteers’ help (wrapping a gift, assembling a holiday basket, filling a food bin, or hosting a fundraiser) and donations!
Ronald McDonald House
The Ronald McDonald House of Connecticut is a temporary “home away from home” for families of children treated at local hospitals and healthcare facilities. They offer families the “opportunity to be close to their child in a homey, supportive atmosphere.” Donations help support the organization, and you can also cook a meal for families or cheer up a family who is down from sitting in the hospital with their ill or injured child.
The Malta House
The Malta House in Norwalk “provides ‘Hope for Life’ for new and expectant mothers and babies.” They are the only home available to pregnant women (over the age of 18) in Fairfield County. They support young homeless mothers and their babies during the most challenging times.
Ann’s Place “provides comfort, support, and resources to people living with cancer and their loved ones.” This nonprofit is located in Danbury and Hudson Valley, New York, with professional counseling, support groups, wellness activities, and educational resources. Individuals can turn to Ann’s Place at no charge, and they set out to enhance their quality of life during a difficult time.
Hope In Motion
This signature event raises funds for integrative medicine and supportive services at Stamford Health’s Bennett Cancer Center, allowing patients to access free of charge. These services include rides to treatment; post-treatment exercise programs; restorative sessions of massage, reiki, yoga, and reflexology; and grants for non-medical expenses.
Hillside Food Outreach
Hillside Food Outreach delivers high-quality and nutritious food to those with a low income, illness, or disability. Their mission is to help individuals and families have access to a traditional food pantry so they may achieve a better quality of life. Hillside strives to positively impact the health and wellness of individuals as well as strengthen their overall community access!
Fight For Two
In October 2019, Alex was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. She was 34 years old and 18 weeks pregnant at the time of diagnosis. She completed the majority of her treatment during the Covid-19 pandemic. During her second round of chemo, Alex found out the funding for the snacks for patients in the infusion center had been cut. She made what she thought would be a one-time snack donation and gave the center over 1500 individually wrapped snacks. Less than one year later, in October 2020, the Fight For Two Foundation Inc. was founded.
They have since donated over 45,000 individually wrapped snacks to cancer centers and families throughout NY and CT. They have donated over 250 care packages from Africa and the UK. In 2021 they fulfilled our first wish trip to Disney World and since have fulfilled two additional trips for stage four cancer patients! During the 2020 and 2021 holiday seasons, they donated over 1500 toys to pediatric cancer patients throughout NY and CT. They are thankful to remind so many families that NO ONE FIGHTS ALONE!
The Center for Family Justice
The Center for Family Justice provides free, confidential, bilingual crisis services that help all victims of domestic violence, sexual violence, and child abuse. Their mission is to help these individuals restore and rebuild their lives. They also have a nationally accredited Child Advocacy Center that works with children and teens who have experienced domestic or sexual abuse. They work to provide community education to help prevent future abuse and violence.
The Sterling House
The Sterling House is located in Stratford and is a community facility. One of their mottos is plain and simple, “We care. We connect. We serve.” They are known for summer camp, the food pantry, after-school programs, and preschool, but they are so much more! Always looking for diligent volunteers to help with projecsupportingort the greater community.
Filling In The Blanks
Filling in the Blanks is an organization that provides weekend meals to children in need. Located in Norwalk, Filling in the Blanks was founded by mothers and community activists who saw a great need. The organization now serves 51 schools throughout Fairfield and Westchester Counties and “has delivered over ONE MILLION weekend meals to children in low-income households.”
Inspirica in Stamford has a simple mission, “to break the cycle of homelessness by helping people achieve and maintain permanent housing and stability in their lives.” They serve individuals and families who are homeless or at risk of homelessness; these people can be single families, people with mental illness, or persons living with HIV/AIDS. This holiday season, they are fundraising for Holiday Wishes. They are hoping to provide over 3,000 gifts for 1,500 children.
Person to Person
Person to Person has locations in Norwalk, Stamford, and Darien. This nonprofit organization uses its resources to “help those in need while educating others about the impact of poverty and injustice.” What began as food and clothing assistance has grown to include emergency financial assistance, camps for children to be safe while parents work, and college scholarships to break the cycle of poverty. More than 90 percent of all donations go directly to programs!
The Rowan Center
The Rowan Center is a sexual assault resource agency that strives to “empower, educate and eliminate” sexual violence. Their mission is to provide counseling and support to victims of sexual assault and educate tbroaderder community on sexual violence. The center serves towns in lower Fairfield County and has been open since 1979. They offer 24-hour confidential support, and they have advocates available if a victim wants to go to the hospital, file a police report, or has any court proceedings.
Kids In Crisis
Kids in Crisis “ensures the well-being of children through vital 24-hour services.” They provide temporary housing and comprehensive medical, educational, and therapeutic support for children throughout Fairfield County. It is the only agency in Connecticut that can house children from newborn to age 18, and they also offer crisis counseling and community education programs for children and families. They have partnered with TeenTalk and SafeTalk to provide educational programming.
Neighbor to Neighbor
Neighbor to Neighbor offers three food programs and a clothing program to local individuals in need. Their mission is simple; “Neighbor to Neighbor improves the lives of residents in need throughout the Greenwich area and strengthens our community by creating access to food, clothing, and basic living essentials in an atmosphere of kindness and respect.”
Connecticut Community Founder Women’s Fund
The mission of the Women’s Fund is to “identify, convene, and support programs that promote advocacy and skill development while fostering resilience, self-esteem, and self-respect among girls and young women in our region.” Possible grant-funding projects include outreach and youth development programs.
Women’s Center of Greater Danbury
The Women’s Center has provided a haven for survivors of domestic abuse and sexual assault since 1975. They serve over 30,000 individuals in the Northern Fairfield and Southern Litchfiecountieseas. Services include an emergency residential facility, crisis intervention, counseling, advocacy, human trafficking support, and community education and prevention training.
beCause 4 Paws
beCause 4 Paws is a nonprofit organization dedicated to saving homeless and abused dogs and cats across Connecticut. They are run solely by the generosity and love of volunteers who foster and care for these abandoned animals. beCause for Paws also provides medical emergency care and intervention for injured pets.
Center For HOPE
With multiple locations in Lower Fairfield County, The Center for HOPE is “one of the area’s most respected and trusted resources for bereavement and critical illness support.” They have been serving adults and children with an illness, grieving a loss, or facing a life-altering circumstance for over 35 years. They provide counseling, support, and education services by specially-trained professionals.
And in the spirit, here are some other great resources on how you and your family can give back this holiday season!
- Teaching Your Child to Want to Give Back to Others
- Teaching Your Kids the Art of Giving This Holiday Season
- The Season of Giving Back – Family-Friendly Volunteer/Donation Opportunities
- National Make a Difference Day: A Tradition of Giving Back & Helping Others
- Where to Donate Used Toys in Fairfield County