Now that it is summer, I am sure you have already heard, “I’m bored” at least one time, right? Well, what better time is it than now to teach your children about serving and helping others–even if the ‘other’ is pets! I think it is really good to teaching them what it helping others and really teaching them what it means to help others.
It’s really been put on my mind that I wanted to write about this topic, because I have recently been talking to my children what life is really like and that it’s okay to teach our children that life isn’t always pretty. In life we experience happy, sad, mad, hurt, along with many other emotions. I got the idea that I would start teaching my children about life the day that we saw the man on the corner of the street, no shoes, scraggly beard, oily hair, holding onto a leash tied to a dog that was extremely skinny. I passed the man because I am not the person to really give money. All of a sudden, my youngest child began asking questions about why this man didn’t have any shoes, where did he live, why was he sitting there…
I felt like I needed to do something, even if it wasn’t giving him money. I went through the drive-thru and ordered several burgers and fries with a drink, passed the man and let my oldest child hand the man his food. The man began to weap tears and begged that we didn’t take his 9 year old dog. It was then, I explained to my children not all people have houses, food, clothes or shoes. It was then that my family began wanting to serve and help more people and pets!
(Please never do anything to put yourself or your children in harms way)
There are so many ways to help and to serve other people. Here is some ideas that might be suitable for you and your family to do.
Helping the Homeless-
There are many ways that you and your family can help the homeless. There are many homeless people that are living in the United States and around the world. You can help by doing things like making care bags to keep in your cars for when you run into homeless people on the streets. Care packages may contain deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, a wash rag, a $5 gift card, peppermints, ect.. We also love animals so keep small bags of dog food as well for homeless men and women who have pets that mean the world to them!
Donate items to homeless shelters. Homeless shelters are always taking donations from clothes and shoes to blankets.
Some shelters and soup kitchens are always looking for people to just serve food for them or greet people that come in.
There is plenty to do at food panties, such as helping separate food or handing food out on the days that people are allowed to come and get them.
Yes, we are big suckers for animals at our house! We tend to visit the animals shelters just to love on the animals or puppies that are at the shelters. Some shelters become so full and are looking for foster parents for animals!
Anyone who has ever been in a nursing home knows that they can be very sad. Maybe you and your family can brighten the place up by making some of the residents some crafts and going to hand them out.
It doesn’t necessarily have to be Red Cross, but some of these organizations help flood, tornado victims as well as homes that their homes have burned. Things can be collected and sometimes these organizations hand out teddy bears to children. This can be another project for small kids, donating some old stuffed animals or going shopping for some. (Sometimes they can be found cheap at second hand stores)
There are several websites that are overseas love to get letters or treats! Find a soldier overseas and write them and send them a care package.
Instead of having a garage sale, donate your clothes, old toys, and food to some of the places that I’ve listed above.
These are great ideas and if I didn’t mention one, I’d love to hear from you on how you and your children serve! So, share your stories on what you and your family do!
Lord, help us to teach our children to serve and not judge them. Help us to see their heart. Help us to have a heart to help people and pets that are in need and need to see love and someone who cares. Lead us and let us be Your hands and feet! In Jesus’ Name!
Until next time…be encouraged!!