The holiday season is a good time to discuss volunteer opportunities with your children. Volunteering as a family is a great way to teach diversity, thoughtfulness and charity, plus it helps kids learn to appreciate everything they have. Not only can your children help individuals in need this holiday season, but also they can help the environment by incorporating a green theme into their volunteer projects. Read on for six easy and green ways to get your children into the true spirit of the holidays.
1. Craft for Charity
Many local communities have bazaar in which individuals or groups can sell their handmade goods this holiday season. To add a volunteer/green theme to this activity, help your child upcycle fabrics from your home (old sheets, towels, clothing) into holiday ornaments, aromatherapy satchels or pet toys to sell at the holiday bazaar. At the end of the day, donate all of the proceeds from your sales to your favorite charity.
There are many materials that can be recycled locally in exchange for cash. Contact your local community to find out what materials they will pay for such as metals, aluminum, cardboard. Your children can collect these recyclables from your own recycling bin as well as from close friends, family members and neighbors. Once the recyclables have been dropped off at the recycling center, your child can donate the proceeds to their favorite charity.
3. Collect Clothing
It’s a sad fact that many children throughout the country will not have a warm, winter coat this holiday season. Not to mention, gloves, hats, scarves or snow boots. Help your child arrange a winter clothing charity drive at their school – ask the administration to include a letter in the weekly e-blast to parents asking for gently used winter clothing to help children in need. Contact your city and state government to find a larger charity that can help disperse these collected garments into the hands of families in need. Your children will understand the true meaning of a cozy coat and a cozy heart.
4. Green Programs
Whether at home, school, your local community center or the library – donate your time by helping them with their green initiatives. If your child’s school, local community program or library does not have a recycling, gardening, composting or green initiative program, work with the administrators to implement one.
5. Traveling for Good
If your family is already planning to take a vacation this holiday season, consider making it a volunteer vacation. There are many opportunities to study and preserve the environment throughout the world while on vacation. Such opportunities include eco-friendly farm stays, eco-tourism packages and environment restoration projects in which your family would spend a portion of your vacation working on a project that benefits the environment.
6. Spearhead Your Own Project
You could organize a cleanup of a local river, park, beach or hiking trail this holiday season. Invite your friends, family, fellow students and neighbors to join you in helping to clean up their own local environment. This activity will not only beautify your neighborhood and warm your children’s hearts, but also it fosters a love for their environment and community this holiday season.
What volunteer projects does your family have planned this holiday season?
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