A primary goal of all parents is to raise children who are thoughtful, contributing members of society. However, making a meaningful contribution to society involves more than just holding down a job and abiding by the law. It also includes creating a positive impact on others.
Being charitable is one of the most common ways of making the world a better place for fellow global citizens. No one is born showing kindness to others, which is why parents are such a great influence. From an early age, parents can easily teach their children about charity. This can either be in the form of doing volunteer work or serving meals to the disenfranchised.
Spend Time with Them
Before working toward charitable giving, parents need to work on strengthening their own relationships with their children. Even if it’s only once a week, taking the time to go for a walk or play together will further solidify the parent-child bond. Once parents have a secure relationship with them, children will listen attentively and follow their parents’ good examples.
Let Children Experience Generosity
Children cannot do what they never see. For this reason, parents need first to show their children how they display generosity. Showing children kindness by providing them with a preferred food or letting them choose the conversation topic can give children validation and the experience of benefiting from someone else’s thoughtfulness. This also means showing kindness to others in their presence. There are needy people everywhere, whether they are a lonely senior or a struggling young family with a new baby, sending over some soup with a smile or gently used baby clothes to these neighbors is a goodwill gesture. Such kindnesses will allow children to see charitable giving and want to carry that torch.
Children will better remember charitable giving when they are personally involved. Ask them to help carry an elderly neighbor’s groceries in from the car or to make a card for an ill neighbor. When children perform charitable acts and see peoples’ reactions, they can feel the satisfaction that comes from brightening someone else’s day.
Find Fun Projects
Charitable giving does not need to involve drudgery. The Kindness Rocks Project, for example, encourages individuals to paint encouraging and colorful messages on rocks. These rocks are then left on doorsteps, parks, or anywhere else in the community where the painter feels they could benefit others. When parents and children have fun being generous together, charitable giving becomes a lifelong habit.