Today, families are finding new ways to spend time together-and volunteering is one way to do just that. Research has shown that volunteering as a family:
1. Helps families learn about social issues and provides a new perspective on the world.
2. Provides positive role models and passes on family values to children.
3. Provides new learning experiences and development of new skills for both children and adults.
4. Provides quality time for the family to spend together.
5. Increases interpersonal communication and the problem-solving abilities of family members.
6. Helps youth decide what they want to do with their life.
7. Enhances development — Volunteering can benefit a child's psychological, social and intellectual development. Volunteering increases self-esteem, responsibility and an interest in learning and helps children develop new social skills. It also provides opportunities to apply newly learned material.
8. Promotes a healthy lifestyle and choices — Children who volunteer are less likely to become involved in at-risk behaviors.
9. Teaches social responsibility — Volunteering helps children develop empathy and learn that one person can make a difference.
10. Creates a lifelong ethic of service — Individuals who volunteer as a child or who observed their parents volunteering have a much higher probability of being a volunteer in their adult years.
11. Improves the community — Volunteer activities are essential for advancing the common good, and children can be part of the change.