As parents, we share the responsibility of teaching our children the value of serving others in the name of Christ. By serving others, children not only learn the teachings of the Bible, but also the rewards that come from helping those in need.
Why should children get involved in community service?
Community service gives children a sense of purpose
By teaching children about community service, you are showing them that they have a purpose in life and in the church. Community service provides a chance to get children to think beyond their own daily lives, and to learn the value of serving others.
Community service teaches responsibility
By actively engaging with their community, children can see first hand the joy they can bring to other people’s lives. Seeing the results of their service can motivate kids to strive to improve the lives of those around them on a daily basis. In addition, children learn teamwork and leadership skills, and learn how their actions can impact others.
By serving others, children learn to serve God
The teachings of the bible clearly state that when we serve those in need, we are serving the most high God, and that our sacrifices for others will never be in vain.
How can parents get kids involved in community service?
Donating toys to those in hospitals
You can arrange for your kids to visit the local children’s hospitals to spend time with sick children and donate gifts to them. Such gifts could include collections of toys as well as crafts designed for specific ages. The tasks involved serve to show children that there are some in society that are not as fortunate as them, and that they need a hand from time to time.
Volunteering in food pantries & shelters
Shelters are almost always understaffed, so any help your children can offer is welcome with open arms. Children can clean, do the laundry or serve food in soup kitchens and other similar facilities. The CornerStone Church also operates a food pantry, and all are welcome to lend a hand. Such activities teach children about people with different living circumstances, and to appreciate what they have in their own lives.
Help children in other countries
Your kids don’t have to leave the country to make a difference overseas. Children can raise money to support a non profit school in Kenya, and learn about how the daily needs and struggles of children across the globe differ from their own. Adults can sponsor children in the Pinch Hit program, while children can play baseball for a cause. This program is a joint effort between Marti Ward Communities for Christ and CornerStone Church, and aims to reach out to children and families in third world countries to spread the word of Christ.
Have kids dedicate some time to care for their immediate surroundings. You can have them volunteer to clean, cut grass, or pull weeds at their church or a local business or shelter. Here, children learn to appreciate the work that goes into maintaining these facilities, and the role that these facilities play in serving the community.
How parents can prepare kids for community service
Organize a family devotional or short seminar to teach the children about the essence of sacrifice and the need to help others. Try to find an event from the Bible that is relevant to the task your children will be working on, and talk about how the lessons and values from that event apply to the current task. If possible, you can also draw from real life examples from the local community and life in general. Be sure to emphasize the purpose of the specific activities so that when your kids start their activity, they have a clear sense of direction.
How parents can engage with children afterwards
After participating in volunteer work, it’s equally important to go over the day’s task and discuss what your child learned from it. Talk about why the work was important and what rewards your child got from it. This teaches children to derive satisfaction from helping others, and encourages them to adopt a spirit of devotion and sacrifice.
There are many ways to serve the community, and there is no single correct way to volunteer. The important thing is that children learn to give back in their own way, and to find joy in helping others.
CornerStone Christian Academy & Preschool is a private school in Las Vegas dedicated to nurturing children in a Christian environment. To learn more about the importance of a Christian education for kids, or to find resources getting your child involved, contact us at 702-939-5050 today!