Every summer, my church’s youth group has a local mission trip. Almost 100 teenagers from ages 12-18 sleep in the youth building from Monday through Friday, going out to volunteer at food banks, sort recycled soaps and discarded hygiene products, and do yard work for the elderly.
And you know what? Spots fill up almost immediately. This year, it took a record-breaking 5 minutes.
The students thrive on community service. They love helping and connecting with people, sometimes seeing the fruits of their labor, and sometimes knowing they will never see them.
There are many long-term benefits of children participating in and learning how to love community service. Take a look at just a few below.
Opportunity for Quality Family Time
Volunteering together creates opportunities to bond as a family. You can sit down together and share your experiences, discuss what you’ve learned, and brainstorm how to implement these lessons into your daily lives.
Community service sets children up to become selfless, service-driven adults through learning empathy and the importance of caring for others. They discover passions they may have never known, such as removing plastic from the ocean or bringing clean water to impoverished countries, and they can build on that passion as they grow. Furthermore, they develop responsibility and commitment. These skills can be applied to friendships, education, and future careers.
Greater Sense of Self-Worth
In an age where so many people judge their self-worth based on the number of Instagram likes, it may seem difficult to teach children how to self-confidence. Volunteering can help. When children actively participate in community service, they learn that it doesn’t matter how young or small they may feel—they have the ability to change someone else’s life for the better. Community service increases a child’s confidence.
When children and youth volunteer, it benefits both them and the world around them. And if you’re looking for a Catholic school in Orlando where your children can be around others who believe in volunteer work, come visit us at St. Charles Borromeo. You can learn more about our curriculum and beliefs on our about us page.