Volunteering Can be a Benefit for Your Family
Family is important. We’d all like to see our families grow closer and stronger, but finding the time and the activities to bring everyone together can be a challenge. Families are busy as ever, and different interests, schedules, ages, and personalities can make it difficult to get everyone on the same page.
Parents want to spend meaningful time together, to live out the values they want to instill in their children. They’re just not always sure how to make it happen.
Benefits of Volunteering
One activity that’s proven to help strengthen the bonds within families is coming together to help others. According to Psych Central, volunteering enriches families in many ways, including:
- Fostering empathy. It doesn’t usually work to tell children to “think about starving children in Africa” when they won’t eat their vegetables. But working in a food pantry or soup kitchen certainly does. It moves the needs of others to something very real and immediate. Being directly involved gives both parents and children a deeper appreciation for what they have and what others need.
- Seeing each other in a different light. When the whole family participates on a project, parents and children get to see and appreciate each other’s skills and competence.
- Providing an antidote to pessimism and hopelessness. Families who are actively involved in righting some wrongs, contributing to a community’s health and doing good in the world are families who have reason to feel more optimistic.
- Opportunities for connection and talk. Whether repairing a wall, cleaning up a trail, or staffing a food booth, there’s something very satisfying about working together. The banter, laughter and problem-solving that go on (without the distraction of a digital device) strengthen and deepen family relationships.
When parents make volunteering a family affair, everyone feels good about themselves and their family, and both the community and the family benefit.
If you’re looking for ways your family can volunteer in your community, one resource to check out is Points of Light. It is the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service and offers a variety of resources and tips to help you get started on your volunteer journey. It also offers tips on how to engage your younger children in your activities.
WoodmenLife chapters across the country also offer a variety of volunteer opportunities for members of all ages. Organizing a toy drive for those in need during the holidays, collecting and distributing food for local food pantries and visiting local nursing homes are just a few of the community outreach activities our chapters may offer throughout the year. We encourage all WoodmenLife members to bring their families and friends and join us for these activities that support our shared commitment to family, community and country.
If you’re not already a member, we’d love to have you join the WoodmenLife family and experience all of the benefits membership has to offer. For more information, go to WoodmenLife.org/member-benefits.
Member benefits are available to members. An individual becomes a member by joining our shared commitment to family, community and country, and by purchasing a WoodmenLife product. These benefits are not contractual, are subject to change and have specific eligibility requirements.