With swim lessons, summer camps and family vacations in full swing, what better time to start thinking about your holiday charity project?! Seriously--the days are long and your kids are clamoring for activities to fill the long afternoons. Keep them busy and teach them about giving at the same time!
Find a Project
Take a field trip or search your community and let your kids have a say in what they’d like to do to help. Finding a cause that is meaningful to your family will help keep up interest from now until the holidays arrive. Many organizations will be thrilled to know you’re thinking ahead and will welcome your help now, not just during the holiday rush.
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Make a Plan
With just a little organization, many of your holiday charity projects can be prepared during the summer. If you’re the crafty-type, start making the greeting cards for soldiers or hand-made ornaments for a tree decorating fundraiser. If being thrifty or re-purposing s more your vibe, start cleaning out closets now for donations. If you love a deal, just imagine the sales on school supplies coming in a few weeks and stock up to help a needy school.
- Local shelters have year round needs. Get a list of high-demand items and add 1 item to your weekly shopping list. Let your kids be in charge of reminding you or picking out the item on shopping day. Set aside a basket or box for the extra toothbrushes, diapers, socks or crayons and watch it “grow” over the summer.
- A local children’s hospital may have sewing needs. Teach your kids basic sewing skills of making a pattern, shopping for fabric and trying their hand at cutting, sewing or stuffing.
- Get in shape! Sign up to participate in a charity fundraising walk/run and start your training this summer. Setting a fundraising goal will seem more reasonable if you start sooner.
- Organize a yard sale and let people know your proceeds are helping to fund your holiday charity project. You’ll probably make more money if neighbors know it’s for a good cause!
- Organize a book drive with your extended family, co-workers, school, club or faith community
- Plant a garden with your project in mind. Besides fruits and veggies that can decorate your table, think of growing and drying flowers to decorate another person’s holidays.
If you have an idea of your own, please share here in the comments. I’d love to know what projects you and your family are planning!