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How to encourage your children to give back to a cause

How to encourage your children to give back to a cause

How to encourage your child to give back to the community and charity. Which cause is the right one?

When our children reach their tween and teenage years they begin to gain more independence and to develop new or deeper interests.

Finding a cause that engages their interest helps to keep them in touch with the wider community. It also enables them to learn and appreciate the many different ways in which a sum of money can be spent. 

What types of causes?

When it comes to the type of cause, the choices are almost endless. The real key is finding something that your children have a genuine enthusiasm for or connection to. It’s likely to be something different for each of them. Some possibilities include:

  • Helping at an animal shelter.
  • Raising money for medical research.
  • Giving time to a local sporting club.
  • Organising a toy, book, clothing or even cupcake drive for a charity of choice.

There are plenty of other options, and you will know better than anyone what might suit your child. 

What type of involvement?

Just as there are plenty of causes, there are also plenty of ways that your children can get involved. For example:

  • Donate money – donating money for a cause and seeing how it’s allocated helps kids to understand that small amounts of money can make a big difference for many people. 
  • Donate time – donating time can be more difficult than donating money. The benefit for your kids, though, is in meeting a whole range of people from a whole range of different walks of life. 
  • Raise awareness – raising public awareness of a cause is a fantastic way for your children to develop their confidence and ability to communicate ideas with the wider community.
  • Learn about community grants – learning about, and potentially helping parents to apply for, a community grant is a bit like taking on the challenge of a difficult school project, but with the added benefit of a real-life outcome.

What are the benefits?

Working for and towards a cause that they are genuinely interested in can give your children a wider world view, develop their social skills, increase their self-esteem; ability to organise, and hopefully help them to appreciate what they have in their own life.

In terms of financial literacy, it also helps teach them some excellent lessons about the very many ways in which a sum of money can be spent. These are all qualities that will help them to develop into mature, well-rounded adults.

Take a look on The Beanstalk for related articles or fun activities that you can print out to help teach your children financial literacy. 

Executive General Manager, Retail Sales

Lyn is responsible for all aspects of the Commonwealth Bank’s Branch Network, leading a team of over 12,000 staff across Australia, UK and China. With an extensive banking career spanning over 20 years, Lyn joined the Commonwealth Bank in 2007 and has a passion for management and transformation projects. She was recently named as one of the 100 Most Influential Women in Australia 2012 by the Australian Financial Review.