Teaching Generosity with Kids
Thanks to Thrivent Financial for this guest post!
How will generosity take form with your family this season? It’s important to teach kids that generosity is expressed not just as money and offerings, but as time, physical contributions and even simple acts of kindness.
“Generosity is like a muscle; you can start small and build it up – but the important thing is to start.”
1. Volunteer Together: Whether it's doing a special holiday service project together or simply practicing kindness towards friends, neighbors and the community, your family’s time volunteering together will be a well-spent lesson in generosity. These 10 Family Volunteer Tips will help your family get started.
A new, innovative way families and community members are making a difference is through Thrivent Action Teams – volunteer teams led by Thrivent members that address unmet community needs. With seed money and promotional supplies provided by Thrivent Financial, a leading financial services organization "connecting faith and finances for good," Thrivent Action Teams are an incredible way for Thrivent members to make an impact where they live, work and worship. Learn more.
2. Give What You Get: For each gift your family members receive this holiday season (kids and parents included), make it a new tradition to give one gift back. Your “gift” can be anything, from volunteer time to a hug, a special card, a sweet treat … you name it! Valuing the importance of giving as much as getting can be a recurring mantra for your generous family. Check out “Four Simple Ways to Give” from Thrivent Financial, click here.
3. Know What You Need: Easy, intuitive ways for young children to learn generosity is through understanding needs and wants. Take time as a family to sift through gently used clothes, books and toys and donate them to nonprofit organizations. This is an active way to practice generosity and give back to the community. Bonus idea: Shopping for a big holiday dinner? Ask your kids to help pick out a few delicious, nonperishable items to give to the local foodbank, too.
4. Be Thoughtful: A generous approach to giving is a thoughtful one. Find out what unmet needs resource-limited families in your community have this season. Maybe they need heating assistance, gently used blankets and coats for winter or specific foods. Connect with organizations that can help your family’s contribution make a real-world impact and follow up to find out how your donation or assistance will help.
5. Make it a Priority: Your kids will know giving back is an important part of your family’s priorities when it is a regularly scheduled occurrence. With parties, performances and travel, volunteering and helping others can become an afterthought. Add generosity to your family calendar with a special service project or appropriate acts of kindness during the season (e.g., shoveling an elderly neighbor’s walkway or baking cookies for the local fire department).
More resources from Thrivent Financial: