With the Christmas season just ending, many people might be feeling a bit down now that the festivities are over.

Fortunately, even though Christmas has come and gone, people can maintain that community spirit all year round. Pastor Scott Gamble, of the Grace Lutheran Church in Drumheller, says that people should be helping out in their community, not just to improve the lives of others, but also to increase their own happiness.

"Our world is often individually focused and, in giving of ourselves, we find more meaning and more happiness," he explained. "We aren't made just to be individuals isolated on our own. Communities are far more meaningful and productive than just individuals isolated."

Forming relationships can be tricky, especially for newcomers.

"The beginning is just individual relationships, so either in marriages or in friendships or in family," Gamble elaborated. "We can think of others more than ourselves to go out and help other people."

When looking for people to help out in the community, Gamble suggests not only focusing on helping out existing organizations and projects like the food bank. In addition, people need to look towards their own lives and identify individuals that might need a bit of community cheer.

"Look for those people that are really hurting in the world and help them out. But then also those that are having a rough time. Just leaning on a friend that's having a rough time, where life's not going that great -- take them out for a cup of coffee to listen [or be] a listening ear, take them a warm meal when they need it -- just simple things in life are often what people need most."

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