Volunteering Opportunities: How Parents Can Help Teach Children About Giving Back to Their Community

Parents and guardians want their children to show empathy and kindness to others, but it can be hard to figure out how to teach such big concepts to young kids. Teaching kids to give back to the community can show them how we can all make a difference.

Not sure where to start? Here are five ways to get your kids involved in volunteer opportunities that give back.

  1. Start with a hands-on project.
    Kids learn best from doing, so start with a project that’s hands-on. Try a park or beach cleanup, bring food to a local food bank, or have your kids go through their toys and books and donate to a local women’s and children’s center.
  2. Cater to your kids’ interests.
    Are your children animal lovers? Get involved at a local animal shelter. Are they big readers? Try volunteering to read to folks at a nursing home or a hospital. Do they like giving gifts? Make care packages for a children’s hospital or for soldiers overseas.
  3. Let your children see the impact.
    It’s hard for kids to understand how their time and effort makes a difference. Choose volunteer opportunities that make the impact clear. Seeing folks smile at the nursing home or seeing how much garbage they picked up at school makes the experience more tangible and rewarding for children. 
  4. Make a long-term goal.
    Once your kids see the impact of giving back to the community, find an ongoing opportunity to get involved in so your kids can see other folks giving back, too. Start a monthly toiletry drive for a shelter, or take part in a fundraising campaign for a local charity.
  5. Model getting involved.
    Kids are more likely to be interested in volunteer opportunities if they see the adults in their life giving back to the community. Walk the talk and join your kids for whatever volunteer opportunities they’re excited about!


Padres Pedal the Cause offers several great volunteer opportunities for a variety of ages and abilities. For younger kids interested in giving back to the community, the Padres Pedal Kid’s Challenge is a great way to get involved while having fun! Kids from 3-12 years old can bike or scoot around our youth track to raise money for life-saving cancer research! Learn more about how you and your kids can participate, and teach them how volunteer opportunities can truly change lives. Join us and register today!

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