2020 One City Gives: December 3-11

This year’s One City Gives has officially ended. If you were unable to participate and still want to give back to our nonprofit partners, find out how by clicking on the following links: Meals on Wheels San FranciscoLarkin Street Youth Services, and Compass Family Services

Happy Holidays!

For any questions about One City Gives, please contact sf.citi’s Program Manager Zach Drucker at zach@sfciti.org.

2020 One City Gives: December 3-11

Join sf.citi for our third annual One City Gives holiday giving event. This year, we are organizing a full week of virtual holiday volunteering from December 3 through December 11 to support the San Francisco community. In partnership with local nonprofits Meals on Wheels San Francisco, Larkin Street Youth Services, and Compass Family Services, we invite you to participate in giving back ahead of the 2020 holiday season—all from the comfort of your home. 

To participate in One City Gives, complete one or more of the virtual volunteer activities listed below by December 11—the web page will be deactivated after this date. Gather your family, friends, and coworkers to help you fulfill as many volunteer activities as you want. Your generosity will go a long way in providing some sense of normalcy during the holidays, especially in a year that has been as abnormal as 2020!

Help us reach our goal of signing up at least 150 virtual volunteers by sharing your involvement with One City Gives on social media. To make it easy, we’ve provided sample social media posts and images to accompany your posts here.

Holiday Volunteer Opportunities

Make Holiday Cards for Meals on Wheels San Francisco

Winter Holiday Cards for Homebound Seniors

Let Meals on Wheels seniors or adults with disabilities know that you and others in their community care about them. Every year since 1970 Meals on Wheels volunteers have made and distributed thousands of hand-made winter holiday cards. Especially now during the COVID-19 crisis, these cards can help lift spirits for seniors who are isolated and alone. Your hand-made winter holiday cards will be packed with meals delivered by Meals on Wheels drivers throughout the year-end holiday season. So kick back with your family or virtually with friends and co-workers and get creative! You will have fun tapping into your artistic side all while knowing that you’re making a difference in the lives of so many of our community's seniors.


  1. Read all of the instructions and guidelines below.
  2. Make creative winter holiday cards for seniors and adults with disabilities.
  3. Fill out a cover sheet with the following information and include it with your card(s) when mailing.
    • Name(s)
    • Company/Organization name
    • One City Gives
    • Email 
    • Number of winter holiday cards
  4. Place your card(s) and cover sheet in a single envelope/package and send to the following address:
    Meals on Wheels San Francisco
    Attention: Stephanie Galinson
    1375 Fairfax Avenue
    San Francisco, CA 94124


What Materials Do I Need?

  • Cards must be small enough to fit into our delivery bags. Fold-over note cardstock works well, as does an 8½ x 11 piece of paper folded in half twice. What matters most is that the finished card is about 4¼ x 5½ inches in size.
  • Do NOT use glitter, macaroni, or other types of decoration that can easily come off.
  • Envelopes are NOT needed for the cards.
  • Make as many cards as you see fit. Meals on Wheels San Francisco will end up distributing thousands of cards during the holiday season.
  • See sample holiday cards below.

What Should I Write on the Card?

  • Remember, seniors often have poor eyesight. Keep print large and avoid cursive.
  • Do NOT sign the cards, not even with your school, organization, or company name. It confuses many of the senior clients.
  • Please avoid irony, slang, puns, or jokey cards as it may confuse the clients. Think of kind, sincere, and joyful messages and images.
  • Please do NOT use language that pertains to any religion.
  • Write "Season's Greetings" on the front of every card and a positive message on the inside such as:
    • Best wishes for a lovely holiday season. We’re thinking of you.
    • Wishing you comfort, joy, and hope in the year ahead.
    • Happy Holidays and warm wishes. Wishing you a safe holiday season.
    • Happy New Year! To a holiday season filled with good health and good cheer.
    • Warm holiday wishes! New Year - New beginnings


Questions? Contact Stephanie Galinson, Volunteer Coordinator, at sgalinson@mowsf.org.

Donate Essential Supplies for Larkin Street Youth Services

Holiday Essential Gifts for Transitional-Aged Youth Experiencing Homelessness

Make the holidays extra special for young people experiencing homelessness in San Francisco by donating basic essentials from a curated Amazon wishlist. The items you donate are crucial in helping Larkin Street Youth Services distribute holiday gift kits at their Winter Festival celebration. With the unbelievable challenges this year has presented, let us make these young people feel the love during the 2020 holiday season.


  1. Read all of the instructions and guidelines below.
  2. Select items from Larkin Street Youth Services’ Amazon wishlist that you want to donate.
  3. Before proceeding to checkout, head to your cart and click the checkbox next to “this order contains a gift.”
  4. Send the items to the address below.
    Larkin Street Youth Services
    Attention: Brittney Ison
    134 Golden Gate Avenue
    San Francisco, CA, 94102
  5. Craft a season’s greeting message in the “gift message” section to pass along to the recipient(s). In the “from” line, include your name, your organization/company, and One City Gives.


How many items can I donate from the Amazon wishlist?
  • There is no limit to how many items you can donate from the wishlist. Larkin Street Youth Services needs each item on the list many times over—even one item donated will go a long way!
  • There are no restrictions on what color the items can be. You may choose any color you want.
  • All sizes are needed! If you get stuck deciding between sizes, however, the most in-demand sizes are XS-M for women and L-XXL for men (XS-M for men’s underwear though).
What do I need to write in the “gift message” section?
  • First, enable the “gift message” section by going to your cart and clicking the checkbox next to “this order contains a gift.” The “gift message” section will then appear after you enter shipping and payment details.
  • In the “gift message” box write a cheerful non-denominational season’s greeting that will be delivered with the presents at Larkin Street’s Winter Fest Christmas dinner. Some examples include the following:
    • Best wishes for a lovely holiday season. We’re thinking of you.
    • Wishing you comfort, joy, and hope in the year ahead.
    • Happy Holidays and warm wishes. Wishing you a safe holiday season.
    • Happy New Year! To a holiday season filled with good health and good cheer.
    • Warm holiday wishes! New Year - New beginnings
  • In the "from" line, write your name, your organization/company, and, most importantly, One City Gives (e.g. Zach Drucker, sf.citi, One City Gives).
  • Do NOT check the box to add a “gift bag” as Larkin Street Youth Services will need to match the gifts to individual young people and will have staff gift wrap the donations onsite.
  • Do NOT check the box to “email the recipient a copy of their gift receipt after the gift is delivered.“


Questions? Contact Brittney Ison, Development Coordinator, at BISON@larkinstreetyouth.org.

Read Books Aloud via Video for Compass Family Services

Adopt-a-Family Holiday Storytelling Project

Brighten up the days of families sheltering in place this holiday season by creating a video of you reading aloud your favorite holiday book, story, poem, or inspirational quote. Your video stories will be shared with the homeless and at-risk families who are a part of Compass Family Services’ programs to enjoy during the holidays.


  1. Read all of the instructions and guidelines below.
  2. Record a video (up to 7 minutes) of you reading your favorite holiday book, children’s story, poem, or inspirational quote.
  3. Submit your video to Compass Family Services using this form. Videos must be uploaded as an mp4 and cannot exceed 1 GB.


What Do I Need to Make the Video?

  • To get started, choose your holiday children’s book, story, poem, or quote. When you are choosing your story, we ask that you do your best to choose one that is not overtly religious and is inclusive to the diverse population of families served by Compass. Here are some great winter holiday book ideas.
  • If you do not have a physical copy of your book on hand and would like to show the book’s pictures, you can look for an eBook or PDF version at your local public library or online.
  • Get creative! You can wear costumes and use props to help tell your story. And if you have the skills, feel free to add video effects.
  • Grab your family and roommates and have fun acting out the story—or get together and read the story with your coworkers and friends over your favorite video-conferencing technology (e.g. Zoom, Microsoft Teams).
  • Watch a sample video from the sf.citi team and our friends at Twitter, Okta, and NextRoll below.

Should I say anything to the families?

  • At the beginning of your video, introduce yourself or all participants by saying your name and organization/company—if you have one.
  • At the end of the video, feel free to say any general words or messages of encouragement and support for the families. Please use inclusive language and do NOT say anything that pertains to religion.


Questions? Contact Stacy Webb, Corporate Relations and Communications Manager at swebb@compass-sf.org.

Got Questions?
Email Zach Drucker at zach@sfciti.org

Disclaimer: Final products may be used for social media purposes. Please let us know if you do not want your contributions to One City Gives (cards, videos, etc.) publicized on social media.