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3 ways to teach your child about the importance of giving back

25 November 2019 - by Dawn Yan
With the holiday season right around the corner, your to-do list as a parent is likely expanding beyond your control. Between buying your children gifts, making sure that they’re signed up for a Winter Break Program, and prepping for your family’s big holiday get together, you may not have time to think about how to give your kids “the talk”. As grandparents, relatives and family friends continue to ask your child what they want for the holidays, you could find that your little one is developing a bad case of the “gimmies”. So what exactly can you do to flip the switch in your child and remind them that the holiday season is about giving and not receiving? Here are some tips to help you get the ball rolling: 

Work Together to Donate Old Clothes & Toys to a Charity
Make this a new family tradition by encouraging your little one to clean out and sort through any old clothes or toys that they don’t use anymore. Rather than asking them if they still want a specific toy or article of clothing, ask if the object in question could be more beneficial to another child in need. From there, children will likely ask more questions (ie: what does it mean to be less fortunate?, where are my clothes going?, etc.) to which the answers can help teach your child an insightful lesson about giving, while also including them in the process of fulfilling charitable deed.

Perform Random Acts of Kindness with them
Tis the season for milk and cookies and teaching your child about the importance of giving back to the community can be as simple as whipping up a fresh batch of holiday goodies or even some hot cocoa for your neighbours after a long hour of shovelling snow. No matter what time of the year it is, random acts of kindness are always in style and can go a long way, reminding your child just how rewarding it can be to give back and put others first.

Lead By Example and Volunteer your time
Looking for more hands-on ways to teach your child about the importance of giving back? What better way to support their understanding of volunteerism than leading by example and letting them learn first hand? In the spirit of the holiday season, sign up to volunteer at a local charity or non-profit organization in your area and invite your child (or teen) to come along! Whether you choose to volunteer at a local soup kitchen, animal shelter, or join our team of Volunteers at YGTA, you and/or your child can make a world of a difference when you donate your time. Beyond this, fostering a spirit of volunteerism in your children early on can also educate them about community responsibility and build character.

At the Y, we’re committed to building healthy communities dedicated to nurturing the potential of children, teens and young adults in the GTA. That’s why every year, we offer a wide array of interactive programs chock-full of fun to keep kids busy and safe throughout Winter Break. From group games to fascinating field trips, we’ve got something for every child to do at the Y! Learn more about our Winter Break Programs or register your child today via our website.


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