How to Get Your Family Involved in Your Community

By Jessica Bivins, May 9, 2017, Charity & Community, Family

For your kids, summer vacation is an endless sunny splash party with friends or a chance to catch up on gaming time. But this is also a perfect time for them to get involved in their community. Community involvement is a great way to bond with your family while helping someone in need. Here are a few ideas to get started with helping your local community:

Purge and donate — Pick a too-hot or rainy day, sometime when it’s nicer to stay indoors, and dig in to sort and clean up outgrown toys, books and clothes. Let them help you photograph, market and sell the old stuff online, and donate the spoils to their favorite charity. Or, donate the clothes to a charity that collects them.

Pick up trash — Load the car with garbage bags and some rubber gloves, head to your favorite park or nature reserve, and clean up an area before it’s time to play, swim or hike. A few outings such as this will teach kids to think twice about where they set their water bottle.

Adopt a grandparent Time spent with the older generation can give your child a new perspective, while easing the elder’s isolation that often comes with the sunset years. Check in your community for an Adopt-A-Grandparent program, which matches teens with older adults. Otherwise, contact your local nursing home and see if they can match your family with one of the residents for weekly chats and card games.

How to Get Your Family Involved in Your Community | Bounce Energy Blog

Volunteer — Does someone in the neighborhood need a hand? Keep your ear out. There’s bound to be someone who is ill, recovering from an injury or is simply less mobile due to advancing years. Head over as a family and offer to help. Perhaps they’d appreciate lawn mowing assistance, help with walking the dog, or help getting groceries. If they seem hesitant to accept help, tell them your child needs to fill volunteer requirements. It doesn’t matter if they’re for scouting or your own requirements.

Festivals — Check the community calendar for festivals, fairs and other get-togethers. Chances are, the organizers can use some volunteers to serve snacks and cold drinks, collect tickets or pick up trash. Find something you can do together. That way, you all can help first and have fun at the festival later.

Get crafty If you have a kid who loves working with their hands, several charities accept handmade items, such as baby hats, blankets and quilts. These can go to homeless shelters, help emergency workers comfort young children, or serve as a sign of support to vets.

How to Get Your Family Involved in Your Community | Bounce Energy Blog

Animals — Contact your local animal shelter or rescue about volunteer opportunities to walk the dogs and play with them. Or if cats are your child’s preferred animal, try making homemade hideouts and toys for the cats. Or raise money to donate pet food.

Citizen science project — Through volunteerism, you and your family can also be helpers with the advancement of human knowledge. Through SciStarter, you can collect data or send samples that real scientists can include in their research. Hop online and spend some time with the researchable database that can match you with projects that line up with your interests.

Get moving — Sign up as a family for a bike ride or fun run that’s raising money for a worthy cause. Active.com is one resource that can help you hone in on family-friendly events in support of a local charity or nonprofit.

Your involvement in community service makes you a powerful role model, and participating as a family is a great way to spend time together and help your kids learn some lessons out of school. And chances are, the time you take today will pay off in the future.

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