We recently took a look at kid-friendly volunteer opportunities that can teach your child about empathy and giving back to the community. Those opportunities include:
Now, we’ll conclude our two-part series with a look at five more great places for your child to volunteer. After they’ve had a long day of giving back to the community, bring them to Rebounderz Trampoline Park here in Edison. They’ll jump around with a big smile on their face knowing they made the world a better place.
For how wonderful parks and playgrounds can be, they are often ignored when it comes to cleaning and upkeep. Volunteering at the park can be as simple as picking up trash or pulling some weeds the next time you visit. If your local park is in need of some serious elbow grease, you can organize a large-scale cleanup project with the rest of your community. Talk to your local parks department — or whichever entity oversees the park you’re looking to clean — to get permission before setting up this type of event. They may even be able to assist in getting the word out so more people get involved. This is a great option because it gives kids a chance to see how they’ve helped the community directly.
Of course, we’re not implying your child will be feeding the lions when they volunteer at the zoo. While some zoos have an age requirement of 18 years or older for their volunteer programs, others offer special teen programs. Visit your local zoo or aquarium to see what volunteer options they have available. Usually, teen volunteers will assist visitors, help with kid programs, and perform other day-to-day functions, such as sorting recycling. While they won’t be in direct contact with the animals, they’ll get a chance to see plenty of exotic wildlife from a safe distance.
This is a similar scenario to that of a children’s hospital, where you and your child likely won’t be interacting much with the residents. However, it is still a worthwhile opportunity to help someone in need. Give your local shelter a call to see what they might need help with. If you’re unable to contact them directly, a local service agency will likely have a volunteer project that you can participate in. Volunteering for a women and children’s shelter usually involves painting, basic maintenance, and other upkeep needs. Small touches that make the shelter feel homier can make an incredible difference to kids and mothers who are struggling.
Less of a volunteer opportunity and more of a fundraising event, this is a fantastic way to get the whole family involved in giving back. Find a charity that you and your family have a connection to and get involved with a fundraising walk or run. For instance, if you have a friend or family member that has suffered from something like heart disease, cancer, or ALS, find a race that raises funds to fight those illnesses and register your family to participate. While it may be called a race, this doesn’t have to be competitive. Everyone can get involved, no matter how old they are or what their skill level is. Even little ones can get small contributions from friends and neighbors. Gathering small change to donate still teaches the lesson of giving back and can foster a lifelong love of charitable work. Older kids can go a bit further with their fundraising efforts by holding a car wash or bake sale.
There are many sick, injured, or elderly people who struggle every day to complete even the most mundane of daily tasks. Adults have a chance to help them out by driving them to appointments or helping out with something like grocery shopping. If you participate in one of these programs, check with the organization and person you’re helping about bringing your child along. Not only can a kid add some more excitement to boring errands, but it’s also another person they get to interact with when they might be lonely. However, it is important you get the approval from the person you’re assisting, as they may prefer a quiet ride without kids around.
With so many volunteer opportunities available for you and your child to participate in, we know that you’ll find the perfect event to teach your child about charity. When you show them another side of the world where people are less fortunate, it will make them grateful for what they have and foster a desire to lift up others who need a hand. If you’re looking for a location to hold a fundraising event, check us out at Rebounderz Trampoline Park in Edison. We’ve got plenty of activities to make everyone happy. We hope to see you soon!