Roots & Shoots Holiday Give Guide


This holiday season, will you join us and the many Roots & Shoots groups around the world who are giving back to their communities? Even during this busy time of year, Roots & Shooters are working overtime to meet their communities’ needs by spreading compassion during the season of giving.

Here’s your Roots & Shoots Holiday Give Guide with ideas and inspiration from members around the U.S. for making a difference for people, animals, and the environment:

Roots & Shoots Holiday Give Guide


Abby A_3Join Abby in making cards.

Abby is making holiday cards for hospice patients. At Christmastime, she will be visiting the hospital to sing carols and deliver the cards.

René J_0Camille %22Cami%22 S smaller_0Join René + Cami in hosting a toy drive.

René and the Greenwich High School Roots & Shoots Club are be collecting toys, art supplies, clothing, and more to send as a holiday package to an orphanage in Bonao, DR. The drive is part of their Holiday Spirit Week during which student are encouraged to dress to different themes and during lunch periods, the club is hosting card-making for a local hospital, a collection of boxed dessert mixes, and a bake sale.

Cami and her R&S group are hosting a toy drive for the local orphanage.

Olivia C_1Join Olivia in collecting clothing for those in need.

Olivia and her Roots & Shoots group are collecting infant clothing for all the babies at a women’s crisis pregnancy homeless shelter.


Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

  • Ohio Roots & Shoots worked to reduce waste by selling reusable bags that they decorated themselves and donating the proceeds to charity.
  • Students in Washington reused old boxes and paper to wrap holiday gifts.
  • Roots & Shoots in Ojai Valley, California put recycled boxes around the town to collect old incandescent holiday lights, which they pooled and sent to a recycling center.

Click here for more ways to give back to the planet this season.

Bake & make for animals

  • Students in both Illinois and Oregon are making pine cone bird feeders and cereal garlands for the birds and squirrels in their neighborhood.
  • Waterford Roots & Shoots in Vermont bake dog biscuits annually to donate to their local animal shelter.
  • Roots & Shoots in New Jersey made cat toys with catnip and pom poms to give to the humane society.


Adopt a family
“Adopting a family” involves learning a little about a particular family in your community and shopping for items on their wishlist that usually include clothing, blankets, toiletries, and school supplies. Many community organizations like police offices and churches help to organize these connections.

Ornament-making at the nursing home
One group visits a local nursing home this time each year to make holiday ornaments with the people there to get into the holiday spirit.


  • SHHS students in Kingston, Massachusetts are selling candy canes to raise money for the local homeless shelter.
  • Echoharmony Club in Los Angeles handmade Christmas wreaths for a raffle and the proceeds went to aid youth in the community.
  • Roots & Shootsers in California made and sold holiday napkin rings and cards to support Second Chance Dog Rescue, Orphaned Chimpanzees, and the Community Peace Garden.

Presents for children


The Jane Goodall Institute is a global community conservation organization that advances the vision and work of Dr. Jane Goodall. By protecting chimpanzees and inspiring people to conserve the natural world we all share, we improve the lives of people, animals and the environment. Everything is connected—everyone can make a difference.

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About Author

Susan Janowsky is a Jane Goodall Institute Roots & Shoots intern and current senior at Tufts University studying Art History and Anthropology with a focus on Human-Animal Interaction. On campus she is involved in Tufts Animal Welfare, Hillel, and Ski Team. Her passion for animals and conservation has led her to where she is today. Susan has been on an archeological dig in Belize, worked with camels in New York, and has a very handsome labradoodle, Pepper.