We have a difficult time finding ways to show our boys how blessed they are and how grateful they should be for all that they have.
Our 7 year old "T" was looking for activities to do and wanted to create a business. We encouraged him to raise money for charity and think through how he would go about doing so. He enlisted "recruits" - his neighborhood pals. They all made drawings over the weekend for something of value to potentially sell. Then Daddy and him identified Phoenix Children's Hospital as the place they would raise money for, registered online for a donation page, and Daddy generated a QR code to put on a flyer along with visuals to help the kids talk through what the donations were going towards.
We talked through the details with T, and he saw that 50% of the patients that went to the Phoenix Children's Hospital have little to no private medical insurance, that $7 provides a meal voucher, $25 would give a family a gas card, etc. That the money they raised from helps ensure that these children and their families can get the care that they need. The identified goal was to raise enough to purchase a wheelchair ($500).
Yet, when it came time to knock on doors, the kids all wanted to play Fortnite instead, so it was just T and daddy going door to door. The first few doors were terrifying, and T kept saying how scared he was at every door he walked up to. He stumbled through telling people about what he was doing, and there was a lot of wary looks. He had uncertainty whether any money would be raised at all. However, T kept persisting and was determined to make it happen. Finally, a kind neighbor decided to donate and it changed everything. T was beyond excited and went again to enlist his friends. Now all the kids wanted in on the action and the next time T went out to knock on doors, the others joined, and T talked with confidence and enthusiasm! T taught the others the talk track, that they were to give away their drawings to those that donated, and they rotated through who would take lead.
Unexpectedly, in encouraging the kids to do things for charity, we realized we were gaining a lot more than we were were giving. We found that these discussions helped us instill the values of empathy and helped make the kids more grateful for their situation and for what they have.
In doing things for others, we always end up receiving even more.