No matter what our personal circumstances are, wanting our children to have a better life than we have had is universal. We often think of this in terms of what can we give them, which is all well and good, especially when the giving involves better education and greater opportunities. But a valuable lesson that can pay dividends in many ways throughout their lives is to teach your kids the benefits of staying involved with and giving back to their community.
Keep it clean
Most of us are aware of local, organized clean-ups targeting a section of the highway, park or shoreline. But you don’t have to wait for an event to get involved. Family members and a few friends can do exactly the same thing with the proper equipment and a public area that needs some care.
Brighten someone’s day
Children are remarkably compassionate, but they often don’t see those in need. Help them see how simple, basic necessities we take for granted are unavailable for others. For example:
- Clothing – Gently worn or new coats can be provided to One Warm Coat. It’s fun to look through your closet and know your coat, and you, can make a difference.
- Toys – There are national organizations, like Toys for Tots, where you can donate or many local organizations. But the point of your kids giving one toy, of which they have of many, can create a moment of awareness.
- Food – You can volunteer to provide meals, perhaps through a program like Meals on Wheels and take your kids with you.
Let them choose how to give
One way to create a sense of accomplishment with your kids is to let them pick what charity they want to give to. If they earn money or an allowance for chores or receive money for birthdays, perhaps they can set aside a portion of their earnings and give where they feel most connected.
Community service helps kids learn how they fit into society and how they can begin to help solve the societal problems we all face. Please visit our website to learn how you can help.