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I’m not nearly as spiritual as most members of my faith. But I do believe in good values. Service is where my heart is. I want to volunteer a lot this season. I have a one year old daughter, so finding services for her to get involved in and understand what is going on is kind of hard. But, I can teach by example. Kids understand emotion. They know when people are happy and sad. She gets when she does something nice. There is nothing wrong with starting young. As the holiday season is fast approaching, I’d like to take a moment to remind you of different charities/volunteer work/service projects you can do with your kids. These are great around Christmas time, but can (and should) be thought about all other times of year. Hopefully it will help encourage to offer your services throughout the year.
The Christmas Box House is a home for children 11 and younger who have been separated from their homes due to abuse or neglect. These children rely on the services of others. Volunteers have to be 12 years or older and your group size can be up to 10 at a time. If you have older children you can volunteer your time, or even families with younger children can also provide gifts for the children. To find out what items the kids need/want go to this link. If you would like to learn more about volunteer services, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Primary Childrens Hospital is always looking for blankets and craft kits. You can make those and get your kids involved to help make them. They also have a need for different toys and new clothing. There are lots of sick children there that could use our help. For more information about what products you can donate click here.
My mother in law always liked to help families in her neighborhood. My husbands family and 3 other families would pull together and provide pillowcases full of gifts to a family in need. They called themselves the pillowcase bandits. They custom made each pillowcase with the child’s name on it. That whole pillowcase was gifts just for that child. The families providing the service would have the kids take the pillowcases up to the door, ring the bell and run away. The kids loved it. I’ve always thought that was a great way to get your kids involved with service.
One year, my sisters and I appeared extremely ungrateful for the gifts that we received. My mom said “No more!” So the next year, she said we are going to give, not receive. It taught us a huge lesson and I will always remember it. She took us out shopping and instead of getting presents for us, we got to help shop for families in need. We were involved with every part of the process! Including offering ideas, shopping, packaging and delivering. It put a new meaning of Christmas in my mind that I will never erase.
I think overall, teach your kids to do something nice for some one in need! This is something that we should do more than at Christmas time. This is my favorite resource with great ideas to help get your kids involved!
Questions to think about
1. Does my family often volunteer our time or services to families in need?
2. Do we get caught up in buying TONS of stuff for our kids each year?
3. What valuable lessons can we teach our kids about helping others?
Make A Goal:
Think about an area that you want to focus on. Do you want your kids to have a big or small part in the service? Do you know a family in need? What can you do to help them this week? Set aside time to brainstorm with your family. I bet your kids know some great ideas and will surprise you. Make a goal that is realistic to your family schedule and financial commitments.