Summer is nearing, your kids are about to be homework-free, organized schedule-free and quite possibly bored at home. Why not engage with them by helping them find a nonprofit to support? On top of bonding as you learn what your children are passionate about, you will also instill positive traits in them including creativity, confidence, discipline, selflessness and more. Take these steps to help your children discover what cause they want to support and how to begin:
Teaching kids early on to do what they love and love what they do by supporting a nonprofit they care a lot about is a great way to instill a mindset of always pursuing their passions. Ask your kids to observe their surroundings at school, at home and out in the community and tell you what they see. Listen for the issues they recognize and ask questions as to why things are the way they are. And of course, ask them outright what they would love to help out with and benefit.
Note: Remember to stay open to whatever ideas your kids come up with, and help them think of creative ways to benefit that cause.
Now that they have an idea in mind, research organizations that work to improve the situation/issue/cause that your children are passionate about. There are a lot of nonprofits out there, so when it comes down to choosing the right one that’s relevant to your topic, answer these questions:
This step will kick start the entire fundraising process. Ask your children what steps they can take to personally raise money to donate to the cause. Have them get as creative as possible! If they get stuck, be prepared to share some ideas of your own – i.e. doing window washes for cars in the drive thru of local restaurants, selling crafts and paints and babysitting if your children are old enough.
Now’s the time to set goals as to how much money they would like to raise by a certain date. Allowing them to create this plan and offering milestone marker incentives (for example when a certain dollar is reached, the family will go to the amusement park) will ignite their motivation and get them excited to benefit the cause.
Note: Incentivize as infrequently as possible; the less you do, the more exciting and motivating each one will seem.
With goals and a plan in mind, your kids are ready to start fundraising! When it gets hard, be willing to remind them of why they are fundraising in the first place and take them to the organization so they can personally see how their efforts are making an impact.
There will be times where fundraising efforts can seem unsuccessful, so make sure your kids are prepared for whatever situations and outcomes arise. Not every idea will succeed, but they can still feel victorious if you show them the many skill sets and character traits they picked up along the way.
Choosing what causes to support as a family is even how the Good Dog Fund began! Our family wanted to find a way to give back to the community, so we started Raising Help. The funds received from Raising Help feed the Good Dog Fund, where our two sons, Cole and Zach Musial, choose the right organizations to donate to. They choose based on the questions listed above, what causes they are passionate about and the needed support of the nonprofits.