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7 Summer Activities to Grow A Giving Child

7 Summer Activities to Grow A Giving Child

Today’s post is courtesy of Jenny Friedman – founder and executive director of Doing Good Together. Jenny was an expert contributor to our recent Bright Horizons Family Matters parent webinar Growing Givers: Raising Socially Repsonsible Children.

7 Ways for Children to Give Back During the Summer Months

1.  Take a Stand. Host a lemonade stand and raise money for your family’s favorite charity. Boldly decorate a sign with your cause and watch the quarters flow in!

Children making cards for soldiers2. Card Caring. Turn artistic urges into goodwill by making greeting cards. Gather art supplies to create some cheery missives, and then deliver your handiwork to a nearby hospital, retirement home, or even a neighbor! Grab a handy printable you can use to get your mail center started.

3. Start a Giving Pantry. Get in the habit of picking up a few extra groceries when you shop and drop them in a designated (and even decorated!) box. Together, deliver the box to a local food shelter every month or so.

4. Lunchtime Delivery. Take an hour or two to deliver meals to homebound people. Kids love to help carry the lunch and ring the doorbell. Your family’s efforts will help our elderly and isolated neighbors to continue living in the homes they love. Check out Meals on Wheels for ideas or to find a local program.

Elderly Relatives5. Visit the Elderly. Find a nearby nursing home and call the volunteer coordinator there to plan a visit. Bring homemade treats, handmade cards, or small gifts, or take your favorite books to read together. Socializing with elders does children a world of good.

6. Smiles of a Summer Day. If the weather isn’t cooperating, settle in for an afternoon of coloring. Make art with your children and then distribute them to nursing homes, hospitals, the elderly, your neighbors, and friends.

7. Oh Rubbish. Why not tidy up the outdoors as part of your daily summer routine? Keep plastic bags and plastic gloves in your backpack or tote so that you can pick up trash whenever you’re out walking. A fun option: make it a rule to throw away five pieces of trash before your little ones can let loose on the jungle gym.

Boy gardening

For even more service projects and ideas to inspire a socially responsible summer for your family, be sure to check out tips from the Growing Givers: Raising Socially Repsonsible Children parent webinar and the Doing Good Together website.

Jenny Doing Good Together

Jenny Friedman, Ph.D., is founder and executive director of Doing Good Together (DGT), a national non-profit organization that inspires and helps families raise children who are compassionate, aware of social issues, and instilled with the lifelong habit of giving. Friedman is author of The Busy Family’s Guide to Volunteering (Gryphon House, 2003) and coauthor of Doing Good Together: 101 Easy, Meaningful Service Projects for Families, Schools and Communities (Free Spirit Publishing, 2010). As executive director of DGT, Friedman consults with organizations to develop family-friendly service programs; conducts workshops; writes newsletters and articles; and creates fun, meaningful resources to help families live generously.


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