Research shows that children who participate in philanthropic activities thrive mentally, emotionally and physically. Adolescents that serve their communities usually have better physical health and a more positive outlook on life.
Raising children with a philanthropic and charitable worldview is important for them, your family and your community. Philanthropy touches lives and inflicts powerful change. Your child can develop vital character traits and values — all while making a lasting difference in the community and even the world.
It's never too early to teach kids about giving and helping others. Where do you begin? Explore tips for introducing your child to philanthropy.
Benefits of Involving Children in Philanthropic Activities
Young children can carry the value of philanthropic behavior into adolescence and adulthood. Here are five reasons to teach children about charity and helping the community.
1. It Fosters a Sense of Empathy
While compassion and kindness come naturally to many children, hands-on experience is how they truly develop empathy. Involving kids in philanthropy is a great way to build their emotional intelligence. In addition to empathy, helping others can instill these characteristics in children:
As they develop these positive attributes, children deepen their understanding of other people's needs. Additionally, they can engage more effectively with people from different backgrounds and cultures. When you teach children to help others early in their lives, they're more likely to grow into kind, compassionate adults.
2. It Instills Gratitude
Teaching children about charitable giving and philanthropy helps them recognize that some people aren't as fortunate as they are. This realization can help them develop a sense of appreciation for the things they have. Once they feel gratitude, they're more likely to express it in response to selfless gestures from others.
3. It's Important for Growth and Development
Kids can develop the following essential skills when they give back to their community:
- Teamwork and collaboration
- Goal setting
Philanthropy promotes healthy growth in numerous ways. In fact, one study shows that kids who engaged in community service were 34% more likely to be in good health. They were also 35% less likely to have behavioral problems.
Additionally, community service can help children identify interests, hobbies and passions. For instance, they may discover a knack for planting after helping out at the community garden.
4. It Benefits the Community
In addition to the values it teaches children, philanthropy makes the community a better place. Whether providing monetary donations for a local children's hospital, giving supplies to an animal shelter or collecting canned goods for a food drive, charitable giving enhances the community by helping those in need. Kids can help make their town a safer, healthier and more positive place to live.
5. It Builds Confidence and Self-Esteem
Realizing that their act of selflessness helped someone else can be incredibly fulfilling for a child. It can nurture a sense of purpose, confidence and self-esteem.
Engaging in philanthropic activities can help kids realize their ability to make the world a better place and empower them to continue giving back. When you teach children about giving, you also encourage them to spark change and stand up for what they believe in, which is a valuable trait to carry into adulthood.
How to Introduce Your Children to Philanthropy and Helping Others
Children of all ages — including young kids, elementary schoolers and preteens — can participate in philanthropic activities to discover the value of giving. Here are some tips for getting your child involved in philanthropy.
1. Find Fun and Age-Appropriate Ways to Give Back
With so many charitable organizations and philanthropic opportunities for kids, you may be wondering where to start. Play For The Kids™ makes it easy to find enjoyable, age-appropriate activities for kids to help their community. It aims to raise dollars for Four Diamonds to boost awareness and support for childhood cancer.
You, your child and other family members can host your own fundraiser or support an existing team. Some kid-friendly fundraising event opportunities include:
- Friendly water balloon battles.
- Virtual puddle jumps.
- Sporting tournaments.
- Movie nights.
- Trivia challenges.
- Pet yoga classes.
- Princess tea parties.
Participating in Play For The Kids™ allows children to have fun while supporting a good cause. Donations from these fundraisers support Four Diamonds, an organization that makes a significant difference in the lives of children and their families. Fundraising is an excellent way to support comprehensive pediatric cancer research.
2. Involve the Whole Community
Philanthropy is a team effort, so you can encourage your loved ones and the community to get involved in fundraising festivities. Invite your friends, family and co-workers to join, and advertise the event on social media to inform the public and attract other volunteers. You might also consider asking local businesses to sponsor the event.
3. Teach Them How They Are Helping and Making a Difference
Before involving your child in these philanthropic events and activities, talk early and openly about how you can help others as a family. Show your child how they will benefit their community — they need to grasp why they're volunteering.
For instance, supporting causes like world hunger and childhood cancer can build their empathy and understanding of how they are helping others. Tell your children stories about the organizations you're supporting and the ways you're giving back. During these conversations, explain how their generosity will benefit the health and well-being of those in need.
Once your child starts participating in charitable acts, emphasize how kind and compassionate their services were. They can begin to attribute these qualities to their character and feel more inclined to continue helping. Remember to demonstrate the behaviors you want your child to learn — you are their biggest role model, after all.
Encourage Family Philanthropy by Participating in Play For The Kids™
With Childhood Cancer Awareness Month in September and National Philanthropy Month in November, there's no better time to start giving back. Children's hospital donations from kids are a great way to teach them about serving others.
By creating your own fundraiser or supporting an existing team, you can help children who are fighting cancer and their families. Increase your impact by spreading the word and involving your friends and family to support your fundraiser.
We invite you to join our mission and discover the value of philanthropy for families and kids. Check out Play For The Kids™ philanthropy opportunities to register for an event or make a donation today!