Summer is a great time to start kids on a charitable path, when they aren't as programmed and might be looking for something meaningful to do. So if you have children in your life and you're concerned that they aren't learning to give back, here are some resources geared specifically for them. You'll find things that should appeal to a wide variety of kids, from stories about giving from cultures all over the world to a crowdfunding site specifically for youth.
Learning to Give: This site features curricula and stories from cultures all over the globe to help teach kids about giving. This is a really a resource for teachers, but there's a library of useful activities and stories categorized into content for grades pre-K through 12. The teaching stories might be good for parents to use, too.
Youth Giving: This is an information hub for youth from around the world to learn about giving, plan their grants, connect to other youth-giving projects all over the world, and implement their giving. It's a good tool for helping kids learn about other parts of the world, by seeing charitable projects there and the kids who are making them happen.
The Philanthropy Project: This is a crowd-sourcing platform specifically geared toward young people. It allows them to create fundraising campaigns for nonprofit causes and to engage others to support them. It aims to take kids through a process wherein they learn about causes, plan, collaborate with peers, and run the campaign.
Generations Together: This is a project of the National Center for Family Philanthropy. As the name indicates, this is a great resource if you want to create inter-generational participation in philanthropy. It establishes giving within family culture and history, and it teaches about philanthropy in a way that fosters participation among people of all ages.
Do Something: This isn't about charitable giving, but rather a web-based resource to engage young prople in social change. It helps them identify their passions, find or create campaigns, and sign up to take action, volunteer, and communicate on social media about their chosen issues.
Model being charitable
All of these websites are good resources, but it's ultimately the adults who will have the greatest influence on in the children in their lives. If you want engaged and charitable kids, the first and best thing to do is to be charitable yourself. That means you might need to find your passion, make a plan, engage with other people, and be strategic about your own giving. Then talk to your kids about what you're doing, why, and how. Even if they seem bored, if you're doing it genuinely, they will pay attention.
Fool contributor and Giving Coach Mark Ewert is as serious about charitable giving as you are about investing, so he wants to help Fool readers and their families to be skillful givers. You can purchase his book, The Generosity Path: Finding the Richness in Giving, through his website or at your local bookstore.