This Week's Challenge: Volunteering for Kids

kids



It wasn't until I had a kid of my own (three years ago) that I realized the depth of truth underlying the clichés about all that children mean to our world.

Once I witnessed in my own household the potential, purity and vulnerability of a young life, I knew I wanted not only to nurture my son but also to help children who might not have the love, support or stability they deserve. And so I sought out volunteer opportunities at organizations devoted to preventing shaken baby syndrome and teaching parents the value of positive child-rearing techniques.

This week, AARP's Volunteer Challenge focuses on how to make a difference with youth. Ideas include getting involved with Experience Corps, a program where you can tutor and mentor children in urban areas; holding a school supply drive; helping children learn financial literacy; and the top 10 ways you can make the biggest difference in schools. 

You can also read inspiring stories about others - including a former executive, an opera star, and a tennis pro - who give their time to prepare today's kids for tomorrow's world.

And you can join the conversation on volunteering - for any cause that moves you - and enter Create The Good's Win & Do Good contest, to win $15,000 for your chosen charity and a $25 gift card for you.

Yes, it's cliché to say the future depends on what we invest in today's children. But it'sg who we are today. It may have come from a teacher, coach, mentor or neighbor. Now w also true. Somewhere along the way, most of us had help outside our families in becomine have our chance to do the same for the next generation.

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October 27, 2015 05:58 PM
Lexi Jadoff, 31, is a driven, ambitious Washington, D.C., consultant with a unique way of de-stressing. She volunteers with The Reading Connection (TRC), a nonprofit that promotes reading for at-risk families. Jadoff is among the Read-Aloud volunteers who read each week with children at shelters and affordable apartment complexes.
September 17, 2015 02:29 PM
Some people take a fitness class before heading to work. Others jog a mile or two. Jennifer Kenealy, 45, gets her morning workout by hauling boxes of children’s books to schools, recreation centers, youth-focused nonprofit organizations and other sites. These are spots where children of low-income families congregate as part of Alexandria Book Shelf (ABS), a citywide literacy program run by the uber-creative DreamDog Foundation.
September 08, 2015 11:10 AM
Men in tuxedos and women in sparkly jackets mingle in the Green Room of the Little Theater of Alexandria (LTA) in Virginia. A pianist in the far corner plays show tunes on a baby grand piano while a small group sings “Hello, Dolly.” Other guests sip wine and nibble on artistically presented hors d’oeuvres.