I am passionate about serving with my kids. I want them to understand, as best as they can, that there are people in our world and in our city who need our help. And not just our resources but also our time. I want them to have a compassionate heart to help people in need.
That being said, that doesn’t mean they will always understand it and enjoy it in the moment. This past Sunday, after serving for about 10 minutes Abbey turned to me and said, “I am tired of doing this. When am I going to go to Grammy’s?” Ugg. I wanted them to have fun! I wanted us to serve together!
I will never forget taking Elijah last summer to the waiting room of Crisis Assistance Ministries, a place where people wait for hours in hopes that they will find help to pay their bills and provide for their families. We were there to give out books to kids and read with them while they were there waiting. Elijah was discontent the entire time… what are we doing here? how long are we going to be here? Mommy, I’m thirsty. when are we going to leave? Towards the end of our visit, I was talking with the director of the organization, Carol. She told me that all her life her parents drug her to places like this to serve people. She told me she never really liked it as a child, but then one day, as a young adult, she realized she had such a passion to help people in need. She now gives her life every day to it.
When we go to an event, I try and prep my kids- This is what we are doing, this is why we are doing it. It is going to be hot. We will stay until our task is finished… even then there are times where they just don’t get it, or they can’t stay engaged. I have to remember that I planted a seed of generosity and a seed of compassion in their heart, and trust that God will bring it to fruition in His time.
All that being said, here are a few family friendly events you can be a part of this LOVE Week…
1. Birdhouse Making
It’s summertime and your family is spending a lot of time playing outside. Share the beauty of the great outdoors with the residents of Agape Senior & Assisted Living by building bird houses. Start building on July 29 from 1-3:30 pm by signing up HERE.
2. Free Store
Do you or your kids like to shop? Did you know you could volunteer at a free store for LOVE Week? Free Store is a large-scale resource for donated clothing and household items that are given to families in need at no charge. Our teams need your help inspecting, sorting and stocking donated items in the Free Store to go out to local families in need. Shop till you drop on July 30 from 9-11 am HERE.
3. Healthy Family Fun Day
Join us for a community hot dog social and health expo at the Community Health Services of Monroe Diabetic Clinic. This free clinic serves over 7,800 patients in Union County with Diabetes. Many of these patients are unemployed and have no health insurance. The Clinic provides these patients with all the tools to help them lead a healthier life. Join families from the Monroe area on July 31 from 9-1: 30 pm to enjoy food and have fun as they gain valuable health information. Register HERE.
4. Summer Block Party
What better way to celebrate summer than with a fun outdoor block party? We will be celebrating with the residents of Agape, their families, and community on July 31 at 6:00 pm. Sign up to celebrate HERE.
5. Family Game Night
What is more fun that a family game night? Play Bingo, cook dinner, and make dessert with the residents at Inreach on July 30 from 4:30-7 pm. You win just by signing up HERE.
TORONTO, CALIFORNIA AND ROANOKE – LOVE Week is going on at all our locations and our extension sites. Here are a couple of our favorites there.
6. Back to School Centerpieces
Do you and your kids like to make arts and crafts? Then this project is for you. The Yonge Street Mission in Mississauga, an organization that supports at risk youth and families in Toronto, is holding a “Back to School Fundraiser” to raise money for school supplies for dozens of children this fall, and we get to create the centerpieces! We will provide all the supplies and instructions for you. This is a perfect event to do at home with your family, or get some friends together and make 2 or 3! You will be able to pick up and drop off all supplies at church on the weekends. Start creating by clicking HERE.
7. Ronald McDonald House
This event is a favorite of our volunteers every year. We will be cleaning inside and outside landscaping at Ronald McDonald House Roanoke. July 31 from 6:3-8:30 pm. Register HERE.
8. Food Drive
Bring your family with you to the grocery store and pick out items for the Sacramento Food Bank. Bring by your cans between 8am and 7pm on Wednesday July 30. Accepted items include: fresh produce, canned & dry goods, USDA certified perishable food items (meat, eggs, dairy), unexpired baby food & formula, clothing, diapers & baby supplies, bags, backpacks, purses, books, toys, unopened toiletries, computers, TVs and bicycles. To donate and find out more, click HERE.
9. Coat Drive
Growing families outgrow clothing. Clean out your closets and donate your coats to bless local, underprivileged families in the Roanoke area. Bring all your jackets to church on Sunday, August 3. Find out more HERE.