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Start a New Holiday Tradition: Give As a Family

Janet Redwine General Leave a Comment

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Kids are generous!  This Chicago seven-year-old raised $20,000 for her local hospital.  Many YouthBiz Marketplace participants donated a portion of their profits to local nonprofits and organizations this year.  And in Young AmeriTowne, students donate a portion of their individual and business earnings every day.  In today’s blog, we want to share some ideas about how families can cultivate this generosity and turn philanthropy into a holiday tradition.

Created by Community First Foundation, Kids for Colorado Gives is the perfect place for young people to explore giving.  Parents and grandparents purchase a Giving eCard, and then kids use this card to donate to a nonprofit of their choice.  Community First has designed their site to be informative, fun, safe and kid-friendly.  There’s a quiz to help youth decide what kinds of programs interest them, there’s a Giving Activity Kit for parents and educators, plus every donation comes with a downloadable coloring page.

The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation has a whole year’s worth of ideas to help families practice kindness together.  Learn more at

Kindness Calendar

You’ve probably seen a December Kindness Calendar in your social media news feed this year.  But if you didn’t, the tradition works like this: use a pre-designed schedule to help you and your family practice kindness every day for a month.  Create your own calendar as a family, or use one of the many found online.  Random Acts of Kindness Foundation even has a whole year’s worth of ideas to get you started.


Young people have a particular affinity for helping animals.  Year after year, AmeriTowne students donate the most money towards nonprofits that aid animals, no matter if they are cute and cuddly or creepy and crawly!  Families can combine education and philanthropy by choosing an animal to learn about and then researching how to help.  Maybe there’s a local animal shelter that could use hand-made gifts like toys or blankets?  Or, young people could create a small business to raise money to support a global cause like the National Wildlife Federation?

Bill Daniels, a philanthropist and founder of Young Americans Bank wrote:

“Imagine a world where people give of themselves simply because they want to.  Not out of a sense of debt.  Or because they want something in return.  No ulterior motives.  No guilt feelings.  Just the desire to give for the sake of giving.  Now, instead of imaging this kind of world, do your part in making it happen.”

Creating a family tradition of giving can make this dream a reality.  What a powerful legacy!

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