By Darryl Alder
Feb 14, 2015

Service, a Gift of Love for Valentines

seniors valentinesI never thought of myself as a Pinner, but there are  a lot of good Valentine service project ideas out there, like the one to the left for the birds. Here are just a few I found  (one for every day of the month):

1. Valentine’s for Senior Citizens

A card for Valentine’s Day might be what residents need to get cheered up. Making cards might not be the most fun or exciting service projects to suggest, but sometimes they have quite a large impact. Contact a nearby retirement home to see if they would accept cards from your den or troop.

2. Take the Seniors thing a step further with either:

0209151054aAsk about making door decorations or even hosting a Valentine’s Day party with snacks and music.and take the Scouts to a local care center to deliver them.

or

Organize a board game night at your local nursing home. Gather your friends and favorite classic games, and plan a fun afternoon.

3. Donate  Kits for patients at Primary and Shriners children’s hospitals. They are looking for Valentine, St. Patrick’s Day, Easter, and spring craft/decoration kits. (Place all items in zipper storage bag [like Ziploc]  Get ideas at Crayola Crafts, Disney® Family Fun, Making Friends, Martha Stewart Crafts. Items like glue, glitter, and scissors are not required in kits.)

4. Night on the town

For parents with young kids, Valentine’s Day isn’t usually a romantic night out at the movies or a fancy restaurant—unless troop, team or crew members step in to offer a babysitting service.

adopt a troop heart5. Adopt a deployed military troop.

Send Valentine’s Day-themed care packages with cards thanking them for their service to our country.

6. Make cookies, cupcakes, or a cake and decorate Valentines. Then take them to the local Fire Station to thank firefighters for their service or the local Police Station to thank them for their protection.

7. Make a no-sew fleece blanket for a child in need through Project Linus.

8. Organize a food drive in your neighborhood, church, or school.

9. Have a garage sale to collect humanitarian supplies for the Deseret Industries

10. Plan an afternoon of fun: crafts, a movie and popcorn afternoon, or a kickball tournament at a children’s home or refugee center. Plan a day of fun!

LDS Charities Donate School Kits to Children

LDS Charities Donate School Kits to Children

11. When school supplies are very cheap at the beginning of the year, pack up a backpack and supplies for a local child in need (the Deseret Industries and YMCA frequently collect these, in addition to other organizations).

12. Bring gently used board games and decks of cards to a local homeless shelter.

litter partol13. Put on gloves and pick up litter at your local park.

14. Write a letter to your elected official about a cause you believe in.

15. Collect DVD’s and videogames you no longer use/watch and donate them to a Children’s Hospital for patients, or to KidFlicks, an organization that set up movie libraries in the children’s wards of hospitals.

Cub Scouit Animal Kindness16. Volunteer at an animal shelter– play with the dogs and cats, help to brush them, and clean up after them.

17. Read stories to or share your talent with younger children. Be a positive role model that kids can look up to!

18. Work with your local high school or college to place empty boxes on campus at the end of school. Collect textbooks for students who need them in Tanzania, Sierra Leone, and other African nations (and keep them out of landfills!).

19. Stuff warm socks with snacks and fruit to pass out to people who are homeless.

20. Secretly rake leaves or shovel snow for a neighbor in need.

21. Make sure your school is recycling– talk to your city hall to get recycling bins for all of the classrooms and make posters to explain what materials can be recycled.

cub-scout dog22. Hold a “dog wash” to raise money for a local animal shelter.

23. Volunteer to read letters or the newspaper to residents in nursing homes.

24. Collect used sporting equipment and donate to communities that do not have access (such as IAYS that works with the Peace Corps to deliver worldwide).

25. Donate used baby and toddler toys to a nearby church, synagogue, mosque, or temple for their youngest members. Most places of worship have a place for little ones to be entertained during services.

26. Donate books you’ve grown out of to the waiting room of a local dentist, doctor or ER.

27. Donate your gently used stuffed animals to a local firehouse or police station to give to children in emergencies.

28. Promote bike-riding and carpooling at your school to reduce traffic and air pollution.

If you’ve enjoyed these ideas, check out these tips to teach your Scouts empathy, these incredible kids doing community service projects and our day filled with random acts of kindness.

There are so many opportunities this month to teach our Scouts about helping others—what are your favorite service projects for kids? What did we miss? 

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Author: Darryl Alder | Strategic Initiatives Director, Utah National Parks Council, BSA.B2Y by FOS FinalPortions of this article were taken from Pinterest and other internet sites

 

 

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