Officer Matt Buckley, a Military police officer from Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, discusses different tools used to train military working dogs to students of Pritchardville Elementary School in Bluffton, S.C., May 28, as part of a career day designed to teach students about different career opportunities available to include military service. The Provost Marshal’s Office aboard the Air Station provides law enforcement, investigative, and security services to MCAS Beaufort, Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island and Naval Hospital Beaufort, S.C.

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If you run a small business, it is important to give back to your local community. After all, this is the community that breathes life into your business. It is the city, town or village that you call home, and so it is always a good idea to make sure you are an active participant in the community. Nonetheless, this is often a lot easier said than done, especially as you probably don’t know how you are going to manage to squeeze another minute into your hectic day. But don’t worry, as here are some great suggestions to help you get started…

  • Give donations – For those that are time poor, this is one of the easiest ways to make a difference in the community. After all, there is no denying that money can make a big difference for a lot of charities and groups in the area. The David Johnson Cane Bay case is a great example of a donation that has gone a long way for the greater good. Of course, you may not be able to donate as much money as David Johnson, the co-founder of Cane Bay, was able to. And, that’s fine! Any amount of money will be greatly appreciated by those in need.
  • Offer your skills – Offering money is not a viable solution for all businesses, so why not offer your skills? As a leader in your sector, you are likely to have an area of expertise that is going to be valuable to other people. There are a number of ways you can offer your skills to great effect. For example, you could hold talks, providing advice for people in need, or you could teach classes on entrepreneurship to local residents.
  • Sponsor a local youth team – Another way to engage your business in the community is to sponsor one of the local youth sports teams. Plus, the chances are that one of your employees has a child on a youth sports team, so this would be the best place to start. You will be able to get publicity in exchange for supporting the team financially. This is a simple way to help out. It does not require a lot of investment in terms of time, but it can make a massive difference.
  • Promote local businesses – Needless to say, this does not mean that you should promote your competition. However, cross networking with companies you are not competing with, in similar markets, can help you both to reach more people while also supporting the community. After all, when two great businesses come together, it is going to be the community that benefits.

As you can see, there are many different ways that your business can give back to the local community it is situated in. Follow the suggestions that have been mentioned above, and you are bound to solidify your position in the local community, showing that you care about the environment and the people that live there. This can go a long way in terms of your brand image too.