Acts of Kindness by Real Families is a series of short interviews featuring stories about service to others. Whether big or small, planned out or spontaneous, hearing about any act of kindness can inspire us to give more to those around us. It’s fun to find new ways to show kindness in our communities, and I hope you will be inspired to get your kids involved in serving others through these creative ideas.
This week I am honoured to have Kate from Meetoo sharing her family’s Lemonade Stand Fundraiser.
What happened: I am really keen for my kids to have an appreciation of charity. They live in first world conditions and yet our day-to-day comes with the usual first world hardships like “I don’t want to go to school” and “why can’t we have an ice-cream” (at 9.30am on a 11C day).
I find sharing pictures of children suffering in the third world, to highlight to my kids their spoilt lives, does little (well it did little for me as a child). When I was about ten and becoming aware of the world at large these images successfully made me feel utterly helpless and wracked with guilt at the frivolity of my indulged life.
So whenever possible I like to give my kids active roles in making a change – even in a small way. We have joined fun-runs and donated our pre-loved clothes and toys. Sponsoring a child felt like a real way to have a connection with someone’s life journey and I didn’t want it to be just about me handing over the money – I wanted the kids to feel they actively contributed.
Therefore my kids held a lemonade stand outside our house and raised just over $100 – which is about 1/5 of the annual cost of sponsoring a child with World Vision. Read more about our experience in this post.
How the experience affected your family: In preparation for the stall I have to admit that I did a large proportion of the grunt work – but there was a huge amount of enthusiasm from both the kids who made the decorations, picked lemons at their grandmothers, and carried all the bits and pieces out to the street when we set up (and also at the other end when we packed up).
It was a great experience as far as planning (what might we need for our stall? signage, change, wares to sell) and communications (we made a poster for our street, told neighbours and friends and family) and of course simple calculations regarding the money exchanged. We also spent time on the World Vision website reading about the different countries and children. We chose a 9 year old girl in Cambodia. My sister in law is from Vietnam and so this choice resonated for a number of reasons.
Message to others: This is a great school holiday project as you will need some time to plan a stall (or another fundraising activity) and also to learn about your charity.
Thank you Kate for sharing your story!
To find more ideas about serving with kids, click here.
Here is another article by Kate you may enjoy: Pay it forward – What’s your favourite drink worth?
If you are interested in contributing to the Acts of Service by Real Families series here at Moments A Day, please send an email describing your story to firstname.lastname@example.org and I will be in touch soon. ~Chelsea