Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. Although chocolate and flowers are the ultimate Valentine’s Day surprises for your sweetheart, there are so many unique ways to declare your love.

Choosing a new gifting option can help make a lasting impact. This year, why not show how much you care by giving back?

Spread the Love – Remember those in your community who help on a daily basis. Write a special thank you valentine to your mail carrier, garbage man, bus driver or teacher.

Write Love Letters – Deliver handmade Valentine’s Day cards to nursing homes, homeless shelters, hospitals and churches, or send care packages to troops overseas.

Volunteer with your Valentine – Spend this holiday volunteering at your local animal shelter, mentor a child to make a difference in their life or give the gift of music to patients at a nearby hospital.

Bake with Love – Bake cookies and other sweet treats for a Valentine’s Day bake sale to raise money for a charitable organization or your favorite cause.

Shop Local – Support your community by choosing to shop with local merchants this Valentine’s Day. Browse mom-and-pop shops in your downtown business district for unique gifts.

Donate a Special Gift – Make a charitable donation in honor of your sweetheart. Support their favorite non-profit organization or charity with a special gift. Consider making a donation to Lakeside Chautauqua.