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Volunteering as a family

Volunteering as a family can bring you closer together while doing something good for the community — so it’s a win-win situation. Consider these three factors to help you find the right volunteer work for all of you.

Family volunteering together

Photo credit: Steve Debenport/iStock/360/Getty Images

Volunteering as a family is such an enriching opportunity — it’s a shame more families don’t get out there and get involved together as one. It can give you the chance to grow closer to one another and build your family bonds. There are so many ways you and yours can give back that there is undoubtedly the right opportunity out there. Here are some things to consider before you start your search for a volunteering gig.

Consider the age of your children

A major deciding factor is the age of your kids. Your choices will be more limited the younger your kids are. But that’s not to say that young children can’t volunteer. With you supervising them, young children can take part in volunteer work where they can fetch small items or simply shadow you safely.

Think about the time commitment you can make as a family

If your family can commit to delivering meals on a weekly basis to people who are homebound, fantastic! But it’s understandable, what with sports, music lessons, work and so on, that making such a commitment might be difficult for some families. So, consider a volunteer opportunity that takes place less often — say, volunteering at Christmas by serving turkey dinner at a shelter, for example, or handing out water at an annual fundraising marathon.

Find something that’s gratifying for the whole family

Helping others is innately very fulfilling. But each member of the family will have a much stronger dedication to the volunteer work if you all value the work you’re doing, so let everyone have some input as to what type of opportunity you participate in. If you’re a family of animal lovers, consider looking into volunteering at an animal shelter by walking dogs, grooming cats or bottle-feeding kittens. Or, perhaps the environment is something your eco-conscious family unit is passionate about; in this case, consider planting trees, for example.

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