Participating in charity and giving back to those in need is such an important part of life, and it is proven to make both the donors and receivers happier. Donating items and money, volunteering time and skills, and spending time with different types of people will inspire your children to give back to their community. Starting at a young age makes charity work a normalised part of life for when your children get older. Here are our tips on how to introduce your kids to charity.
DONATE CLOTHES AND TOYS
Donating clothes and toys is a great way to teach your children about charity and it keeps your house clean as a bonus. Have your kiddos go through their closet once a year to donate clothes that no longer fit and ask them to raid the toy box for items they don't play with regularly. The month leading up to Christmas is a great time of year to donate as many parents cannot afford to give their children gifts.
Setting up a lemonade stand at the end of the street is every kid's favourite warm weather activity! Let them decorate their stand while making sweet lemonade and bargaining away. At the end of the day, let them choose their favourite charity to donate some of their earnings to. Lemonade stands are a delicious way to teach your kiddos about giving, hard work and a little business sense.
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VOLUNTEER IN THE COMMUNITY
Volunteer, volunteer, volunteer! There are so many opportunities in your local community to donate your time and skills and help those in need. Help out at animal shelters, clean up local parks or spend a day feeding the homeless. You can even make it an educational and life-changing experience by volunteering in a different city or state, or even a different country on volunteer-based trips.
SAVE UP FOR CHARITY
Setting money aside for charity is easier to do when instilled and practiced at a young age. Give your kids the option to put part of their allowance in a jar each week or month. When the jar is full, ask for their ideas on what cause they want to donate to or rotate through different charities so that they know where help is needed in their community and in the world. This will make donations and money allocation easier and normal when they start making their own living.
Chat with your neighbours about everything from local issues to bin collection.
Giving on the ultimate day of receiving is a great way to teach your kids about charity. When they are young, have them choose a few of the gifts and toys they received at their birthday party to donate to children who do not receive birthday presents of their own. As they get older, they can ask for cash instead of gifts to donate to their favourite charity. We promise they will feel that much better on their birthday after giving.
HELP THE ELDERLY
Helping the elderly in the community is a great way to give back. Have your children rake your older neighbour's leaves or wash their car. Or have them volunteer a few hours at the local nursing home playing board games and doing arts and crafts with the residents. This will not only teach your kids about charity, but it will also bring a little more life and energy to the elderly community.
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BE THEIR EXAMPLE
At the end of the day, you are your child's biggest hero. Kids aspire to be like their parents, so be the example when it comes to charity. If your children see you volunteering in the community, saving money to donate to charity and lending a helping hand where needed, they will want to do the same. It will not make charity seem like a one-and-done burden, but a routine, natural and fun part of life.
Do you have charitable kids? Share some top tips below with your fellow Nabo members.