“This post was sponsored by generationOn” as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central”
Saturday, November 21 was the 25th annual Family Volunteer Day. Thousands of families participated together in activities to encourage community service and giving during the holiday season. It’s strategically scheduled on the Saturday before Thanksgiving to help kick off the holiday season in a positive manner by giving rather than receiving. The event is organized by generationOn and Disney Friends for Change. In my previous post, I suggested several activities that your family could use for inspiration for Family Volunteer Day. Today I’m sharing what our family did in honor of Family Volunteer Day and encouraging family volunteerism this holiday season.
The best way to encourage volunteerism in children is to let them help decide what volunteer activity they would like to participate in. Gabe and I discussed a list of proposed volunteer activities, and he chose to collect donations for the local animal shelter. He had already participated in a canned food drive for the local food pantry for his school. They were competing with two other neighboring schools to see who could gather the largest donation. I was glad he chose something different, and Gabe loves animals.
Here are my suggestions for volunteering at, or collecting donations for, your local animal shelter:
- Call or email the animal shelter to ask if they have a wish list. These are items that the shelter needs the most. It might be dog food, cat food, treats, and toys, but animal shelters often need other supplies. They also need items such as laundry detergent, bleach, towels, disposable gloves, paper towels, and disinfectant. I doubt an animal shelter will turn down an in-kind donation, but it’s best to know what the shelter urgently needs.
- If you can’t make in-kind donations, inquire about volunteering in the shelter. They can often use help walking and socializing animals, cleaning kennels, and assisting staff. Who knows, while you’re there you might meet your next animal companion.
- You can also share information about available animals on social media to encourage pet adoption. This will help animals find homes faster, lessening the burden on the shelter and stress on the pet.
generationOn seeks to inspire kids (and families) to get involved in their community through leadership development and service learning. It’s part of a much larger organization known as Points of Light, which is dedicated to volunteer service.
Did you participate in Family Volunteer Day? If so, you can share your volunteer story until December 3, 2015 at 11:59:59 AM ET on http://generationon.org/fvd to be eligible to win one of three grand prizes of $1,000 VISA gift cards and one of 10 “family night out” prize packages for dinner and a movie valued at $160 each.
Do you plan to volunteer as a family this holiday season? You can get more ideas about volunteer projects or projects in your community by visiting generationOn. Considering encouraging your child to participate in the 6th annual Joy Maker Challenge.
Even if you didn’t have a chance to volunteer on Family Volunteer Day, all hope is not lost; you can still encourage family volunteerism throughout this holiday season (and next year). The sponsor has graciously donated a $100 Visa Gift Card, and you can enter to win it using the widget below. The only requirement is that you leave a comment stating how you would encourage family volunteerism this holiday season (but you can grab several other bonus entries).