Why Kids Should Volunteer - Soft Skills Kids Develop When They Volunteer
While we know that children who benefit from being involved with a nonprofit organization or community service demonstrate greater cognitive and emotional skills, what is less well-known is that the same goes for the benefit of kids who volunteer abroad. Although it is possible to teach skills like creativity and problem solving to kids who spend many hours in the classroom, they gain much more from engaging with people from other cultures and living among people with different beliefs and values. By having regular experiences that run the course of their lives - whether it's participating in community service work, building houses for the homeless, or becoming a volunteer in Africa - kids gain an enriched view of the world around them. Here are some benefits of volunteering that kids can obtain when they serve abroad:
Helping kids understand the difference between right and wrong helps them grow up to be responsible and respectful citizens. Volunteering is a lot more than just doing good deeds and getting a feel of responsibility. Kids learn how to handle both positive and negative feedback from people they encounter daily and cultivate and nurture their leadership qualities by getting a sense of their true worth as individuals. The experiences that they help develop in Africa also give them a chance to practice these skills on an international scale and help people who are less fortunate than they are.
Volunteering offers kids the chance to use their creativity and imagination in ways that they may not be able to do in a classroom. Many times, a trip or service abroad means that the children must get creative. Working alongside artists, musicians or writers allows them to think out of the box and do things that adults may never consider. Having these soft skills learned in such a setting also enables kids to get a real sense of what it means to care about something and see a situation from all sides. Learning this valuable life skill will help them in many areas of life and gives them a chance to have a truly memorable career.
Those children who have limitations and are unable to give back in person can get started with giving back easily by sending supplies to charities, serving families in the community, directly through Giving Digitized, Giving Back Made Easy.