Living and Giving

The Classic Pamela Positive: How You Can Be A Family That Gives Back, Part One

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Often we think about giving in a solitary way. It\’s just us giving.

We are approached by nonprofits and we give. We see a cause, and we give.

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But you can have a greater impact if you do one thing: include others. Most importantly, include your family.

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When you give solo, you are making an impact. But when you share it with others, as a lesson, an inspiration, and as a humble manifestation of good, you are helping the world. You are helping other members of your family see good taking place. Then, it can become a habit. Others will see that as a model of how one should live. They will naturally give.

Here’s some practical tips on how your family can give during the holidays or any time of year. Please share with us what you did!

1. Model Early

Certainly, a humble attitude regarding giving is always appreciated. When people speak about a long list of their giving, it can be about bravado.

With family, it’s different. Your 4-year old, 6-year-old, 18-year-old… whatever age they are… will understand it and absorb it. So begin gently sharing how you dropped off a meal for a single mom; donated clothes to the neighbor down the street; or quietly funded a scholarship. All of these actions make a difference. If your child sees this is the norm, he, she, they, or we will do it too.

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2. Come Up With Your Family Values

Have a dialogue at the family table about what’s important to your family. Is it love? Truth? Doing the right thing, being selfless, slowing down, listening, helping others…? You can decide as a family and make sure that you have that up on an inspirational white board, bulletin board, or chalk board that you can point to. You can read before you sit down for your meals. Have a vision for the type of family you want to be, serving with the world and your local community.

Next, come up with your values. You don’t need more than three. They might be Grace, telling the truth, and loving kindness.  You can always change them but it’s important to start living and practicing them. You can then talk about it at the table. What did you do today to really live these values?

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Is this philanthropy? You bet it is. The definition of philanthropy by Merriam-Webster is

“goodwill to fellow members of the human race” 

which also means loving people. Loving people is the purest form of philanthropy. It\’s from the Latin philanthropia, which is defined by loving people:

Phil (Love) + Anthrōpos (human being).

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3. Make A Statement

Now, you’re ready to allow your young ones to make a statement. And they might not be young ones? Many of us live in larger families or blended families. Perhaps everyone gets an “allowance” to do good, not just teens.

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Everyone should set aside an allowance from your savings or be given it from their parents and talk about what they did that week at the dinner table. It’s basically a spending account, for the world. Right now, just over 60% of parents provide an allowance.1 Be a part of a movement to give your family an allowance to help the world!

 

4. Give Your Time

Perhaps one of the most precious things in our busy, Silicon Valley and global world is our time. How we spend it makes a statement. Are you volunteering? It’s great to take your time to do this with other family members.

You might see dad go to be a banker in the morning or go to work at Bapco construction on the street. But when you’re volunteering, you’re all working together, replanting the garden, or serving meals to homeless individuals. By giving back together, everyone is doing the same thing to create a greater good. And it\’s been proven if your family volunteers together, \”the children felt cheered up,\” and they \”respected their parents more.\”2 Those are two great, family bonding reasons!

Everyone should set aside an allowance from your savings or be given it from their parents and talk about what they did that week at the dinner table. It’s basically a spending account, for the world. Right now, just over 60% of parents provide an allowance.1 Be a part of a movement to give your family an allowance to help the world!

 

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So get out there and volunteer and be a stronger family.

I hope these have helped you understand how to live a more impactful life and how to truly give. It’s not just about

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It’s about the

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Let’s Be Living And Giving,

Pamela


Citations:
1Fabbri, Briana, “Allowance in America: When, Why & How Much We Pay Our Kids”, NetCredit, published on September 11, 2013,https://www.netcredit.com/blog/allowance-in-america/
2 Littlepage, Laura, “Family Volunteering: An Exploratory Study of the Impact of Families”, Center for Urban Policy and the Environment, 2003, https://archives.iupui.edu/bitstream/handle/2450/438/31_03-C05_Family_Volunteering.pdf?sequence=1
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