A Summer of Service With My Kids
Earlier this month, my daughter was inspired by a lemonade stand during Lemonade Day and asked about doing something to “help others.” I couldn’t have been more proud and excited. Our family has volunteered at several shelters in the past, serving meals and donating items, so my kids are familiar with community service. However, she wants to do more. So, last night we talked about making this the “summer of service.” In full disclosure I have to share that they’ve also dubbed this the “summer of swimming,” as they have a goal to get the pool at least once a day.
If I’ve learned one thing about my involvement with Women’s Fund it’s to think thoughtfully and meaningful about the contributions we want to make to our community. So, rather than jump right into projects, I’ve asked the kids to think about some of the work they want to do and the people and organizations they want to help. Bailey was quick to respond that she wants to help kids who are homeless and kids who are sick, but she also agreed to my request to do some research before we make any final selections.
Sean wasn’t as quick to embrace this idea of summer service. He’s more excited about the summer of swimming, but he likes to do what his big sister does. And although he’d probably prefer to play basketball (or swim) than research nonprofits, he agreed to it.
So, we’ve given ourselves a few days to do some research and come up with a list of potential projects. I pulled the list of Women’s Fund grantees for the kids to consider and was once again amazed by the impact Women’s Fund has made to so many organizations that support women and girls. And for my daughter who is interested in homelessness and health, I have no doubt we’ll find some incredible organizations to support. I’m actually interested in doing some research of my own on organizations I’m not as familiar with, such as Alternatives, Inc., Wailing Women Win, John P. Craine House and Legacy House.
So why am I sharing this project with you? Because I need your help. I welcome any ideas and advice from others who have maybe done something similar or who encourage their young children to get involved with service projects. Are there organizations, events and programs you might recommend? Any lessons learned?
Being realistic, we’ll probably do one project a week, but who knows. We’ll just have to wait and see.
School starts August 1 and I promise to report back on our summer of service.
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