One of the most important lessons parents can teach their children is to give back to their community, and the larger world. Often children get so wrapped up in their own life, and it is a parent’s job to open up their world-view and help them see that others aren’t always as fortunate as they are. Luckily, there are so many ways to teach children to give back! Children express their emotions through art and creativity, so here are a list of some ways children can be creative and give back to the global community at the same time.
Make Cards: The most simple and easy way to teach a child about kindness and giving is to show your child how to make a simple card! Stop in to Blick Art Materials in Carle Place and load up on pretty scrapbook paper, markers, crayons, and stickers! For envelopes in all different colors, check out Huntington Business Products in Plainview.
Teach your child that to make a card, all you do is fold paper in half, and write a sweet message or draw a picture! They will have fun and others will benefit from their creations. Places such as:
- St. Jude Children’s Hospital, who will pass out the cards to children in the hospital.
- Cards for Hospitalized Kids, another amazing charity which serves children all over America.
- Whether it’s Army, Navy, or Marines, members of our military also love getting mail! Any Soldier and Operation Gratitude are fantastic resources for figuring out where to send your cards.
Make a Blanket: Since 1998, Project Linus (named for the Peanuts character) has been handing out blankets to children in hospitals all over America. There are so many ways for children to get involved!
Stop by The Fabric Mill in Plainview and pick up a yard of cotton muslin fabric; need fabric markers? Check out Riebe’s Artist Materials in Melville. If your little one is old enough to draw, cut out a patch of fabric and let them design their own patches! You can simply sew a small blanket together and send it in to Project Linus.
If your child is older, pick up some fleece from Fabrics 1-2-3 in Commack, and check out this guide for a no-sew blanket to make! Your child will love knowing that their homemade creations are going to someone their age.
Go Shopping: Camp Sunshine is a camp for children with life threatening illnesses and their families; in order to provide such a wonderful experience for these children, the camp relies heavily on donations.
Often, a wish list of a Camp Sunshine camper are full of items that your child is well versed in (Pool Towels, CDs, kid movies). Introduce Camp Sunshine to your child and let them pick out something. Knowing that the items they pick out will be used by a child in need, may help your child take a little time to think about others, slow down, and appreciate everything they have!
By: Olivia Howell