Encouraging Children to Participate in Community Service
Volunteer opportunities for kids in Dallas Ft Worth
by Mina Frannea
The holidays are a time of the year when people are often inspired to volunteer their time to those in need. As parents, my husband and I hope to instill in our children the importance of community service and the concept of “giving back”. Children learn a lot by watching so we try to set examples by giving of our time to school activities and various community organizations. This has helped our children accept service related activities as a normal part of our lives.
If you are interested in exploring volunteer opportunities that your child can participate in with you, look for tasks that aren’t too complicated, are age appropriate and relevant to interests or skills that your child enjoys.
Depending on a child’s age (minimum age requirements may apply), he or she may be able to:
- Organize a collection of blankets for the homeless through The Bridge (www.mdhadallas.org/the_bridge.aspx) or a winter coat/toiletries drive for Captain Hope’s Kids (www.captainhope.org).
- Help you deliver meals to the elderly and disabled through Visiting Nurse Association of Texas (www.vnatexas.org).
- Collect items to fulfill holiday wish lists for The Salvation Army Angel Tree program (www.salvationarmyusa.org).
- Help take care of animals waiting to be adopted at Operation Kindness (www.operationkindness.org).
- Participate in or assist with community walks and races for organizations such as Komen Race for the Cure (www.komennorthtexas.org).
- Lend a hand at athletic events for Special Olympics Texas (www.sotx.org).
- Put together family packets or clean toys for Children’s Advocacy Center of Denton County (www.cacdc.org).
- Collect toys for Toys for Tots (www.toysfortots.org) or host a food drive for North Texas Food Bank (www.ntfb.org).
- Sort toys at Love for Kids (loveforkidsinc.org).
- Help build homes through Dallas Habitat for Humanity (www.dallasareahabitat.org).
- Assist with administrative tasks (copying or filing) for various charitable organizations.
The above represents just a fraction of volunteer opportunities that may be right for you and your child. With so many non-profit organizations in the Dallas – Fort Worth metroplex, the best way to get started finding out about various volunteer needs is to contact agencies that help potential volunteers connect with non-profit organizations.
Volunteer referral agencies in the DFW area include:
Volunteer Center of North Texas
Greater Lewisville Cares
Any of these agencies can provide information about non-profits in your community and help you connect with a specific organization. They can also help you find a volunteer opportunity that will be the right fit for your family.
Although non-profit agencies need help throughout the year, the holiday season is a great time to encourage your child to help others and to make a positive difference! The experience will have a far reaching impact for your family and those in need.
Mina Frannea is a freelance writer and a social media consultant. A Mom to eight-year-old twins, Mina enjoys writing about life in general, family friendly activities around town, favorite recipes and crafts that keep her children busy and happy. For more posts by Mina, visit her blog at www.themomsjournal.com.