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How do older children get involved in volunteering, fundraising or campaigning activities? #iwill want to know: chance to win £300 NOW CLOSED

(173 Posts)
AnnMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 20-Nov-17 12:05:35

We are working with the #iwill campaign to celebrate young people, aged 10-20, who take part in volunteering, fundraising and campaigning. #iwill would love to hear what your child does or what they’d like to do.

To celebrate #iwillWeek 2017 (which which runs between 20-24th November), we want Mumsnetters to celebrate young people who lead social action and their capacity for building communities by bringing others together. The week is all about shining a light on the impact that young people are having, as well as the great work of the 750+ #iwill partners who’ve pledged to create more social action opportunities.

Share your story below and here are some questions to get you thinking!

What do your children do in any of the following areas?

~ Volunteering - do they support environmental projects, older or vulnerable people or other young people themselves?
~ Fundraising - how do they get involved with raising money for local, national or international projects?
~ Campaigning - are they showing their caring side by fighting for something they believe in?

Why do they get involved?
How do you feel about your child getting involved in these kinds of activities?

If they don’t do this sort of thing, why not and do you think they would like to get involved in things like this? (there’s lots of opportunities to get involved here)

Please share your story below - everyone who does will be entered into a prize draw where one person will win two £150 vouchers for the store(s) of choice (from a list) - and you can keep one for yourself and give the other one to your child!

Thanks and good luck

Standard Insight T and Cs Apply

CMOTDibbler Mon 20-Nov-17 12:14:28

My 11 year old volunteers with me - at parkrun, doing refreshments for cycle races (he's brilliant at doing washing up and dishing out cake), marshalling at events (great with the encouraging words!), and he helps me at the annual cycling festival I run - on registration, directing people, putting up course tape and loads more. The cycling festival is a fundraiser, and we raised £3500 this year.
I grew up learning to be involved and do things to help others or paying back for things you get pleasure from doing yourself, and he's done the same.

healthyheart Mon 20-Nov-17 14:29:41

Volunteering - my DS helps with the local Cub pack as part of his duke of Edinburgh award and gets a lot of out it, for starters realising what the adults give up each week to run the pack and how much / little help the attendees give back in return. He enjoys it.

InMySpareTime Mon 20-Nov-17 15:14:27

My teenage DCs are both Explorer scouts, and take on many voluntary roles through this.
Everything from Marshalling marathons/half-marathons to running soft archery lessons at local events, and clearing weeds at various scout campsites.
They've helped set up scout events, packed bags for people in supermarkets, and busked in shopping centres to help fundraise for various scout events/camps.
They also volunteer for our church, helping with the youth club and the sound desk on a regular basis.
I think volunteering helps them build generosity of spirit, and it's made them the wonderful people they are today.

MargoLovebutter Mon 20-Nov-17 16:35:18

Mine have both been involved in volunteering activities through their Duke of Edinburgh's Awards. At Gold level you are looking at a year of volunteering commitment, which I think is pretty amazing for a teenager.

AuntieStella Mon 20-Nov-17 17:18:34

It was kickstarted by Duke of Edinburgh and, like CMOT, it's weekly at Parkrun which depends on volunteers to keep going. It's the largest free, inclusive, mass participation run (not a race!) with a real sense of community.

One of the DSes also did DofE, but his activity didn't stick IYSWIM.

All DC have done various fundraising things at school. Sixth formers are actively encouraged to come up with projects to raise money for good causes and get all year groups participating.

megletthesecond Mon 20-Nov-17 18:19:28

Another vote for Parkrun, adult and junior. DS has just turned 11 and he's discovered he's good at marshalling and cheering on the little kids.

He understands it can't take place without everyone chipping in to help every so often.

FanSpamTastic Mon 20-Nov-17 18:51:44

DD is an air cadet. They do lots of volunteering - selling poppies for The British Legion, helping at the Hospital Fun Run, providing bodies to help at school fairs and fireworks displays. DD

A team from the Wing (cadets from various squadrons in the county) enters the Nijmegen 4 day marches in the Netherlands every year and fundraises for the charity they are supporting that year.

At school they have various non-uniform days for different charities. They also encourage the kids to come up with, run and participate in their own fundraising ideas.

Theimpossiblegirl Mon 20-Nov-17 18:59:48

Both DDs have done supermarket bag packing to raise funds for their theatre group. I always support any group doing the same (scouts, football teams etc.). It's a great way to get the young people directly involved in fundraising.

Chopchopbusybusy Mon 20-Nov-17 19:06:22

DD1 started volunteering at a social club for adults with special needs as part of her gold duke of Edinburgh award. She continued for a couple of years afterwards and even now she is in her final year (of five) of her degree and she still likes to go along when she’s back home on holiday.

Chopchopbusybusy Mon 20-Nov-17 19:09:31

And in answer to the question in the OP. She originally did it because of the DOE but she continues because she really enjoys it. And how do I feel about it? I’m very proud of her. It sure as hell beats drinking cider in the park which is closer to what I was doing at the age she started.

sharond101 Mon 20-Nov-17 20:18:13

My ds is only 5 but school organise lots of events and really give the children ideas on how they can help in the community. My Son loves donating things to the local foodbank and gives old toys and clothes to charity shops.

RueDeWakening Mon 20-Nov-17 21:17:54

My 10 year old is about to become a Rainbow Helper at a local Rainbow Unit. She will run games with the Rainbows at the start of the meeting, help with crafts etc, run games if there's spare time at the end, and help tidy/wash up etc before we leave.

She will shortly be helping to host a community Christmas party, along with the rest of year 6 at her primary school.

She's singing with her choir when the Christmas lights get turned on in our local town, at the school Christmas fair, and at the community party mentioned above too.

She's playing her instrument for the Christmas carol service at our local church (for the 3rd year running).

She's recently been out litter picking and planting bulbs with the local opposition councillors (who include her dad).

I'm a big fan of community involvement and volunteering - my husband is a local councillor, and I volunteer for Girlguiding UK - it's my Rainbow unit she will be helping at, and she wants to become a Leader for Girlguiding when she's old enough. She's also intending to sign up for her DofE bronze as soon as she's old enough, and I'll encourage her to find a different volunteering opportunity as part of that.

TheKnackeredChef Mon 20-Nov-17 21:21:43

I think it's a bit trickier for them to get involved in volunteering if they don't take part in things like Scouts/Guides, DofE etc. We moved around quite a bit so my older ones never really had that opportunity, although now were settled I'm making sure my younger one does them. DD in particular suffers from crippling shyness and whilst I know she loves the idea of helping out in her community, it's difficult to think of things she can do which don't require a huge amount of self confidence to start with. It's good to know there's a resource like iwill and I'm hopeful she might manage to find some inspiration there.

Jasminedes Mon 20-Nov-17 21:22:20

Dd1 helps out with a sports team as part of DofE award, and dd2 is volunteering at a santa dash for a Guiding challenge badge.

ParadiseCity Mon 20-Nov-17 21:25:48

I find it a bit tricky - neither of mine found scouts/brownies etc v inspiring. They do things at school - sometimes for charity and sometimes for school funds/PTA.

Every so often they will want to do their own ideas for sponsored things but imo you can't keep asking people to stump up cash.

Faux-charity things like mud runs add to the complexities.

And they are too young to reliably bag pack imo. So all in all its a bit of a struggle for them to actually do useful volunteering.

jellyshoeswithdiamonds Mon 20-Nov-17 21:39:28

Dd has achived Gold DofE.
Not only that but she's gone on to be a Leader for her section, helping others to achieve their Gold awsrds the following year.

Doing first aider courses, being asked to help/instruct in other life saving activities.

She's still volunteering to be a Leader for DofE next year despite her college work and p/t work.

honeyandginger48 Mon 20-Nov-17 21:46:34

Both my children took part in the National Citizenship Service scheme where they undertook fundraising and awareness raising activities for a dementia charity and a women's refuge . In addition, as part of the Dof E award my daughter helps out at a charity shop at the weekends and is a mentor at school for younger children. My son was a volunteer at our local library helping older people use IT services and was later offered a part time job there.

I think volunteering is a great way for teenagers to help others and in addition to gain valuable experience and the opportunity to meet people of all ages and backgrounds.

Gibble1 Mon 20-Nov-17 22:53:28

My DS is soon to leave Scouts and head to explorers. He has been helping out at Cubs for a year, having helped out at Beavers for 6 months previously.
He attends the programme planning meetings with us leaders and gives his ideas for the Cubs.
He has helped out at our firework display for the past few years by running the sweet stall or helping with the candy floss.
He has been selected to attend the World Scout Jamboree 2019 and will need to raise £3495 to go. So he is going to print enamel mugs, metal drinks bottles and normal mugs.
He has been involved with clearing the wheelchair access along our local sea front, and with planting flowers for the village.
He is also a Marine Cadet and has been involved in fundraising and recruitment on many armed forces days and air days.
He is always doing something- perhaps that’s why his room is such a mess 😂?

Halebeke425 Mon 20-Nov-17 22:58:56

My 9 year old has been involved in various litter picks at the local beach and around the canal area where we live. She really enjoys doing it and it gives her pride in our community. This Christmas I am taking her with me to do some volunteering at our local association for the homeless, she's really looking forward to it!

Quadratilla Mon 20-Nov-17 23:54:26

Both daughters have helped at local (different) Brownie units since they were 11 (they are now 14 and 16). They do this in addition to the usual volunteering that Guides and Scouts do - litterpicking, running stalls at fetes, bag packing to raise money for various causes etc.

Both have also helped for several years at their previous primary school's fireworks event usually selling glow sticks and sweets and/or helping with the clear up afterwards.

Eldest daughter volunteered on a holiday for underprivileged children last summer and gained valuable experience. She is keen to do it again next year. She is currently looking to help at a local hospice for a few hours a week. She also mentors a younger student at her school, helping him with a specific GCSE topic for an hour a week. She is not a saint, nor forced into doing this but sees it all as a valuable learning experience and part of being a member of her community.

Younger daughter has also been selected for the World Scout Jamboree and has just started fundraising. She has made and sold some things as well as bag packed with her unit so far.

Youngest child is 10 but and has also helped clear fireworks and litter pick. He is keen to help at a Cub unit next year and will be helping to plant saplings in the community soon.

I didn't realise how much they do until I wrote it down. I would say they're just normal kids really. Where most of their friends have paid jobs, they work for free in the community.

Oddsocks15 Tue 21-Nov-17 07:43:54

Have 3 DC who are Explorer Scouts and volunteer with local Cub pack as part of Duke of Edinburgh award.

Through Scouts they have litter picked, bag packed, marshalled, made bird boxes with old people in care home, slept in a Church as part of homelessness project

Thesqueezermustghost Tue 21-Nov-17 10:26:47

DD goes to Woodcraft Folk where they discuss the environment and also poverty and do practical things, like raise money or donate items for those in need. They went along to Grenfell Tower in the aftermath. She also goes to St john Ambulance, which I think is developing a strong set of skills to help people. She has always been for social justice, even before she knew the phrase. I am very happy about that - though there is little choice in our home.

Wellandtrulyoutnumbered Tue 21-Nov-17 14:05:42

The children at our school regularly look at ways to fundraise for a fellow pupils operation. Today they did a cake and coffee morning. What struck me was the support of the headteacher despite being busy she set time aside to support these pupils to help them count up the money, serve coffees etc and that is what gives children the ability to change things- support and role modelling.

steppemum Tue 21-Nov-17 14:21:46

dcs are 15, 12 and 10.

The eldest is doing Duke of Edinburgh. As part of that he volunteered for a local homeless shelter. They weren't allowed to be there when the clients we there, but he and a friend went and set up every Friday.
He had never done anything like this, and he was pretty moved by it. he is now planning his silver DofE and working out what to do.

dd1 (12) is a keen scout. As part of that they do various social/community things. They are currently fundraising for a trip to The World Jamboree. My dcs received FSM, so this is a huge challenge and opportunity.
She also volunteers in church, most Sundays she looks after a 2 year old with autism as he can't be in the creche without a 1:1: supporter, so she is his 1:1. She has just started to learn how the computer system works there as well, so she can operate the sound desk during services.

As a family we are very involved in PTA/school events, so kids help with setting up summer fair etc

Youngest doesn't do anything much yet, but does get dragged along whenever I'family do stuff and she is always great at joining in.

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