It’s important for children to learn how to be good citizens, and one of the best teaching methods is for parents to model the right behavior.
One good place to start is to find at least one cause or need in your community where you can volunteer your help.
Let your children know why you think that area is important, and spell out for them how you are trying to help. Let your child join you if he or she wants.
Most children will be eager to become involved — but don’t force it if they’re not.
It’s important to let each child choose where and how to help, so they can take ownership in the progress that is made.
Opportunities range from helping other young people or senior citizens, to helping animals, or tackling an environmental project.
It’s also good to find and share success stories with your children.
It’s easy for any one of us to become overwhelmed by the problems in the community or the world. But the truth is that individuals can and do make a difference.
Talk to your children about the importance of joining forces. Encourage them to involve their friends or classmates in tackling big projects such as a creek or playground cleanup.
All these activities help reinforce the actions of good citizens. They help plant the seeds that individuals make a difference, and that in a democratic society we all have a responsibility to do things “for the good of the order.”