Looking for a new way to spend time with your family? I know I am always seeking new things to
do in the Triangle with my bustling brood! Recently I have discovered one thing that truly equates to
“quality time” - and that’s volunteering. The great thing about it is my kids love it just as much as I
do. As a parent I want to do my best to provide them with hands-on learning experiences where they
may even adopt some new skills. When we have taken on these projects together we have truly made
some memories and learned a few things along the way. We’ve also had some excellent conversations
about the world and why it’s important to do such things as make cards for children in the hospital, pick
vegetables at an urban garden for the hungry, donate our clothing to those less fortunate, and more. This
is why I will engage them in the upcoming National Family Volunteer Day.
On Saturday, November 22, 2014, Activate Good will bring together families from around the Triangle
in recognition of National Family Volunteer Day - a day of service that celebrates the power of families
who volunteer together while supporting their neighborhoods and local communities. Established more
than two decades ago by Points of Light, National Family Volunteer Day was created to demonstrate the
benefits of family volunteering and provide opportunities for families to help their local communities.
Each year, National Family Volunteer Day is strategically held on the Saturday before Thanksgiving
as a way to ‘kick-off’ the holiday season with giving and service. It also signals the start of National
Family Week. This year’s National Family Volunteer Day is sponsored by Disney Friends for Change.
For families interested in volunteering in the Triangle, Activate Good is hosting several family-friendly
volunteer opportunities to celebrate Family Volunteer Day on Saturday, November 22, 2014.
Volunteering is a wonderful way for everyone to learn about the many worthy causes. Here in the
Triangle, Activate Good has over 230 nonprofit partners! One event that Activate Good has planned
for parents and kids of all ages in honor of National Family Volunteer Day is called “Craft for Causes”
where volunteers will take on a number of crafty activities to benefit area causes, from creating no-sew
fleece blankets for the homeless shelter, to making cards for children in the hospital, and more. This will
take place at Marbles Kids Museum in downtown Raleigh (10:00 AM - 12:00 PM). Space is limited, and
volunteers must sign up.
As part of this project, Activate Good will also be hosting a “Sock & Undie” drive for new socks/
underwear for Note in the Pocket, an organization that provides clothing to children in need. As
awareness of the over 51,000 students in Wake County in need of clothing assistance grows, so does
the need for basic clothing needs for these children. Note in the Pocket is now receiving nearly 300
requests for clothes per month. All sizes of new socks and underwear are needed, but especially the
larger size socks and underwear for our middle and high school students. Volunteers are asked to bring a
contribution of new socks/underwear for the Sock & Undie drive and are welcome / encouraged to host
their own drive in advance to collect additional items to bring to the project on November 22. Use this
opportunity to teach your children about basic needs and helping to clothe impoverished children with
dignity and love.
Activate Good has also secured projects with the Food Bank of Central & Eastern NC in Durham (10:00
AM - 12:00 PM) and Raleigh (2:00-4:00 PM) designed for parents and children ages 5-12. These
projects are an excellent place to teach your children about the issue of hunger and how the Food Bank
works. Volunteers will tour the warehouse and participate in an age-appropriate food sorting project, like
repackaging bulk food into family-size portions. Once again, space is limited and volunteers must sign up.
To learn more about National Family Volunteer Day 2014 and to sign your family up to participate in one
of these great projects visit this link: http://activategood.org/familyvolunteerday2014.
I am sure you want to instill values in your kids that run deep just like I do - values like compassion,
kindness and tolerance. I strive to talk to them about these values, but through volunteering I can almost
see the light bulbs going off in my six and eight year old’s growing brains. They’re getting it, and by
volunteering with them I hope to also teach them social responsibility and that together we can make a
difference (even if it’s small) and change our community for the better.
As Activate Good’s motto says: “Anybody can be somebody’s hero.” What a thing to teach our kids!
While we don’t all have capes and supernatural powers, we certainly do possess the ability to take a little
time to help others, give back to nonprofits with limited staff and limited funds to fulfill their missions,
and make this world a better place one baby step at a time. Please take a moment to sign up for National
Family Volunteer Day, and if you’re not free that day, then be sure to check out the pages and pages of
volunteer opportunities on Activate Good’s website!