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How to teach kids holiday charity

Posted at 2:16 PM, Dec 04, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-04 16:16:35-05

As the holiday season arrives, it can be easy to get swept up in the busy times with family and friends.  With that, it is also important to slow down and give back to those in need.

It is even more important to pass these lessons down to our children who may be wrapped up in gifts they will be receiving.

Here's are four points to keep in mind from David Sant, VP of Marketing at Cyprus Credit Union.

  1. Clean Up.  Have your kids do a quick inventory of things they already have before the holidays.  Things they no longer play with or wear should be set aside to donate to charity.  The items should be in good condition and safe for the next child who owns them.  Once you've sorted the items, take the time as a family to clean them up and take them to the donation center.
  2. Be An Example.  When your kids see you performing charitable acts, they are much more likely to adopt those habits into their own life.  If you want your kids to donate, you should be going through your unused items and finding out what you can donate as well.  Gently-used clothing and other household items are greatly appreciated during the holidays.
  3. Let Kids Lead.  Try to find causes that align with your kids' interests or issues for which they have expressed concern about.  Kids are born with an inherent sense of compassion, so use opportunities of charity to nurture these instincts.  This is a great time to teach your kids about the meaning behind the holidays, it's more important than just a vacation from school or getting gifts.
  4. Volunteer Your Time.  Get involved with your local community, and bring your kids with you.  Have your family volunteer at your local homeless shelter or food bank.  Send holiday cards or letters or even packages to women and men in the military.  You could also contact your local nursing homes or assisted living centers to see if there are ways you can help.  Many elderly people can feel forgotten or lonely during the holidays and bringing your kids to help is a great way to lift their spirits.

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