Alert
Close

Think you know AARP? What you don’t know about us may surprise you. Discover all the ‘Real Possibilities’

Family
poll

Most Popular
Articles

Viewed

Why I Volunteer With Kids

Giving youngsters guidance now could benefit generations to come

Motivating others is difficult, especially kids. That's why I make time to talk to a lot of youngsters, to help plant and water the seed of giving in them. We need to teach our kids the value of small gestures. If they see a neighbor whose yard needs trimming, they should knock on the door — especially if it's an older neighbor — and offer to help out.

Or if there's a kid on the block who isn't as good at sports, they should learn to include him (or her) in their games anyway, to make that kid feel like he's part of the group, too.

For adults, the same thing applies: If your community center is looking for volunteers to teach others, for example, how to handle their taxes or how to buy their first home, those of us who have that expertise can have an impact on our neighbors' livelihood.

We need to be observant. When we see kids in need of a little bit of guidance, we can offer that — and we can do it without preaching to them. Remember: We all have talents and gifts. Why not go to the community center or the local library and volunteer to form a class to actively engage the youngsters in dialogue?

If we give kids a voice, a chance to talk about their concerns, maybe we'll learn why some of them feel isolated or are having problems with school or with their social groups. We do that and we're planting seeds with them. You'll be giving back, and hopefully, that will pay its way forward as those youngsters grow and expand their horizons, benefiting from your wisdom along the way.

And you know what? Your greatest moment of pride will come when you see one of those young men or women sitting down years later with younger kids, passing on your example to yet another generation.

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts

Processing

Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

Grandparent
Resources

GrandFacts

National and state fact sheets listing services, programs,  benefits, laws and policies for grandparents raising children. Read

GrandFamilies Guide

Information, tips and tools for grandparents raising grandchildren. Read

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Cheryl's

Members save on custom baked goods packages arrangements from Cheryl’s.

Movies Unlimited

Members save 10% on purchases of DVDs & Blu-ray discs from Movies Unlimited.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.

Being Social

Featured
Groups

Wisdom Circle

Join our circle to ask for — or give — advice on topics such as love, friendship, grief, parenting and grandparenting. Discuss

Grandparenting: Joys & Challenges

There are many joys from being a grandparent, so let's celebrate them together! Discuss

Raising Grandchildren

Grandparent caring for grandkids share tips and discuss challenges, solutions and triumphs along the way. Join