Actions speak louder than words, which is exactly why Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos are teaching their kids the importance of giving back — by both setting an actionable example themselves and by getting Michael, 22, Lola, 18, and Joaquin, 16, involved from an early age. The Live With Kelly and Ryan co-host opened up about her family’s attitude toward charity this week, emphasizing that they’re big believers in “doing.”
As Ripa tells it, she and Consuelos started leading by example when their three now-nearly-grown kids were young. “I was actually thinking about this earlier today and the first time I just participated in any sort of fundamental, community service, was when we went to New Orleans with [Live!] and we helped rebuild this school. My kids were… definitely under the age of 8 years old. They were really young,” Ripa told Us Weekly. “And I think that it is just by doing it, you know, it’s like, ‘Look, if this ever happened to us, we want people to help us.'”
That idea of “doing it” serves as the core tenet of their parenting philosophy toward philanthropy. Consuelos explained, “Kids learn the most by just doing stuff and not talk about it. So, I think we’ve always been all with various charities.”
Currently, that includes a new partnership with AmazonSmile — a charitable program the couple says makes giving back a no-guesswork-involved no-brainer. “Amazon has really great initiatives, especially during the holidays, where you can really just fill certain products on charities’ fulfillment lists,” said Consuelos. “Or you can donate part of what you’re spending, while you’re shopping on Amazon.”
AmazonSmile is the latest way the high-profile parents are setting a positive example for their children, but it isn’t the first (and, as they describe it, won’t be their last by a long shot). From enrolling their kids in community service schools (“It was part of the curriculum”) to having the kids support causes they’re passionate about, Ripa and Consuelos want to ensure their children understand their privilege and use it for good.
“I think that our kids know and the older they get, I think the more they realize how fortunate they’ve been all of their lives,” Ripa said, adding, “I think the more involved in community service they are, the more the realization sort of hits home.”