Valentine’s Day is such a festive time of year! I love a chance to bring out some colorful decorations and enjoy a cookie or two after a long January. As a mom to a growing little girl, I’d like to strive for being able to fully celebrate the holiday of love while taking focus off of romantic relationships. There’s great love to be shared in our own family, with friends and for our community. It’s a fitting time of year to introduce the concept of volunteerism to our little ones.
While there are many great ideas for community involvement that we can lead inside the home, I’ve always personally enjoyed the new experiences that come with volunteering at an organization’s headquarters. It’s a great way to meet new people and, for children, can be an exercise in being on time, listening to instructions and playing in a group. It’s a bit of a challenge to find non-profits that are prepared for our littlest helpers, but we’re fortunate to live in a city where groups really go beyond to get the whole family involved in their efforts.
Here’s a few of my favorite suggestions for taking kids to volunteer in Dallas:
Mission: As a parent, we can truly appreciate the work of Community Partners to restore dignity to and protect abused and neglected children in Dallas. The organization has a variety of programs, from their Rainbow Room to the free HEART talk therapy program for sexually abused children, that help our county caseworkers stop abuse and start healing in children.
How you can volunteer: Mommy & Me volunteer for children 18 months – 5 years old helps little volunteers complete tasks and work on counting and sorting through activities like stuffing Easter eggs for the Easter basket drive, bundling pencils for the school supply program or assembling hygiene kits for children assigned to a county caseworker.
Contact: Annie Mullins, manager of volunteer services, [email protected]
Mission: This family-centric group provides age appropriate service projects for preschool and elementary school age children with local Dallas charitable organizations. The projects currently serve six areas of need: hunger, homelessness, under-privileged children, elderly, animals and the environment.
How you can volunteer: Kids and parents can climb aboard the Locomotion party bus to deliver Meals on Wheels, play science experiments with children living at Family Gateway housing and more. Projects are listed by agency and on a calendar on the Wee Volunteer website. Each project includes a tour of the organization and age appropriate background on what the agency does.
Contact: Sign up for the Wee Volunteer newsletter on their website.
Mission: Started by interior designers, Dwell with Dignity recognizes that with beauty comes inspiration and purpose, creating soothing, inspiring homes for families struggling with homelessness and poverty. The group provides and installs home interiors for families that include furnishings and art, bedding and kitchen supplies, and food in the pantry.
How you can volunteer: Bring your design and craft loving pre-teen to one of the work nights at the Dwell house! Minors beginning at age 12 who can follow instructions and are with an adult are welcome to DIY for a cause Wednesdays from 5:30 – 8:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Contact: volunteer[email protected]
Looking for other ways to volunteer with your children? Check out these other Dallas Moms Blog posts:
- Just 10 Makes a Difference by Cassidy
- Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center: Making a Difference in the Lives of Abused Children by Krystal
- The Birthday Party Project by Bethany