It’s not too surprising that as children grow older they tend to become more generous with their money. Many children are taught, from a young age, that activities such as sharing and giving to others are good things. Later as adults we learn that is this is the way to interact with the world; through compassion and seeking to treat others as we would want to be treated ourselves. Through which we become the person we are. Exposing children to charities is a way of doing this at a much earlier age.
Allowing children to participate in charitable events or giving them the opportunity to donate to charities, provides them with an opportunity to look beyond their familiar world towards new ideals and concepts. Understanding the needs of others, and being given the opportunity to help meet those needs, helps build the child’s self-worth, confidence, and happiness. At the same time the child is also exposed to the concept of collective purpose, which contrasts with their own egocentric desires typically forged during childhood.
When we teach our children the value of giving, we invest in their long term satisfaction. While some people feel that giving to charities is simply a financial interaction, it can have extremely powerful emotional benefits. Countless studies show that an abundance of money does not equal an abundance of happiness. Charitable acts can have a positive effect by providing a perspective on the function of money that is distinct from what children hold to be true – money = wealth = happiness.
Teaching children about charity is also a great way to expose them to an alternative function of money – to do good selflessly, and helping others to survive – No parent wants their child to become a slave to money where their child’s only goal to amass as much as possible at whatever cost. However this is the reality that many teenagers are exposed to through music and popular culture.
Parents will agree that on one thing unanimously – all want their children to be successful and happy in whatever they do. Teaching your child about the happiness in helping others can only benefit them as a life skill.
Everyone, at some point in their life needs a helping hand, and when a child realizes this it makes for a next generation of global citizens that look more at the collective worth in their actions, than the simply individualistic ones. They are able to give to those who are in need and graciously accept help when they cannot make it on their own.
When we teach how to give to charity, what we are ultimately doing is displaying the value of others and teaching to our children how they can open their hearts to others and offer compassion.