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31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Teaching Our Children to be Givers By Setting Examples in Our Everyday Life (Day 22)

Welcome to December’s series on 31 Days of Giving on a Budget. In this series, I’ll be sharing inspiring stories from my readers and posts with practical ways to give — even on a limited income.

If you have a Giving on a Budget story to share of a way you or your family has given to others this year or this holiday season, please email me your story and a picture to go along with it, if possible. I’d love to hear it and possibly share it during this series!

One afternoon last year, there was a knock at the door. I opened it to find a young man with a stack of grocery sacks and papers in his hand.

He introduced himself and let me know he was doing a food drive in our neighborhood for the local food banks. He gave me a plastic sack, asked if I’d be willing to fill it up and said he’d be back later in the week to pick it up.

The girls and I immediately took the sack downstairs to our “pantry”. We came up with tuna, pasta, and a number of other canned and jarred goods to fill the sack with.

As we were pulling things off the shelf, it provided an excellent opportunity for me to share with the girls again about how important it is that we live our lives with open hands, seeking to give to and bless those in need.

It was such a simple thing and a grocery sack full of non-perishables won’t really make that much of a difference. However, our hope and prayer is that by constantly looking for opportunities to teach our children to be givers, it can make a lifelong impact in their lives — and in the lives of all those they come in contact with.

How do you encouraging your children to be givers? I’d love to hear your ideas!

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  • Dee Wolters says:

    When my kids were little, I would go to the bank around 12/1 and get several rolls of pennies to keep in the car. When we would go shopping I would give each of them a penny or 2 to put into the Salvation Army bucket.
    This year while shopping with my youngest, my 16 yr old son, as we approached the store he openned his wallet and removed $1. I thought he intended to buy a bottle of coke at the store, but instead, he put it into the Salvation Army bucket. This is his very hard earned money! I was one proud Mama, as I watched my son give freely, and with no one really watching. Moral of the story: They really do remember all those lessons we teach them. And then they out give us!

  • celia says:

    We discuss this frequently. My son knows the phrase “love isn’t love til you give it away”. We let him see us donate, we tell him and show him that you have to share what you have with people who need help. Raising a child with a giving heart is very important to us.

  • stephanie says:

    The last couple of years my son and i have done a shoebox and we’ve talked about how there are so many kids that don’t have anything. This year, money is very tight. I am expecting in Jan with ny 2nd and my husband left this summer, so my son (who is 4) is not getting much for Christmas. I had decided that we would just skip the shoebox this year. I mean, he wouldn’t even care or remember and what differance does 1 make anyway. (that was my thought) Well several weeks ago we were in the car listening to our Christian radio station and they had a girl on their from Romania who had received a shoebox several years ago and is now a Christian and she was sharing her testimony. My son was fascinated. When she finished, he spoke and said ” Mommy, we need to do our shoebox this year, we can’t forget” I immediatly was so rebuked. Even tho we might not have a lot, we have so much more than so many people. So the next day, we took a few $ and I we went and filled up a shoebox. He was so excited to be able to pick out things for another little boy. I feel like in this situation my son taught me.

  • Chelsea says:

    I love that roll of coins idea! I’m sure they get much less in those buckets now that most people spend with debit/credit.

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