Disclosure: I have partnered with YMC and Local Love and have received compensation for this post. All opinions are my own.
Like most of you, raising good humans is top of the charts for us in our parenting priorities. We feel part of that is giving back in whatever ways we can to our community. Being raised by “helpers” myself, I know a lot of why I think it’s so important and worthy of time is because I was shown how it was done. Instilling a spirit of kindness and generosity starts at home, and this year we put incorporating more goodwill initiatives into our lifestyle on our family vision board.
I know, I know, Mamas, participating in good deeds can feel like another thing to add to our conveyor belt of a to-do list when our crazy lives with small people already seem so full and overwhelming, but the act of doing good just feels really good and there are some really simple, yet impactful ways to make a difference in our communities. Need some inspiration? LocalLove.ca is a great place to start to get ideas on how to live well and do good in your own communities in Toronto and surrounding regions.
We have been corresponding with the team at Take Care Kits for some time on ways to get involved in their incredible initiative that provides personal care kits to parents facing the unexpected and very stressful reality of their newborns being admitted to the NICU or children to the Pediatric ward of our hospitals in the GTA. This cause is important to us, as we’ve had close friends and family face this difficult reality and know what a toll it can take on the well-being of the parents who don’t have time to ensure their own self-care needs are being met. The fact they provide kits to the hospital in York Region all four of our kids were born and where their Nana worked in the Women & Child program makes this cause more personal and meaningful to us.
While a monetary donation would have been easy enough, we wanted to get the kids involved in an age-appropriate activity that made them feel like they were contributing in a hands-on way. So, we grabbed some essentials Take Care Kits said they were in need of from our local drug and dollar store, picked up the bags from the charity’s team and took it all to one of our favourite local parks in York Region to assemble.
We spread the products out in groups and had the kids fill each bag with one of each item. It was as simple and doable for them as packing loot bags for birthday parties and they found it quite enjoyable!
At the end of it, and in only 20 minutes time, twenty kits were assembled for a group of families at a local hospital with a high rate of NICU admissions. A small amount of time to show some BIG love in our community. We all felt great at the end of it knowing the impact it will have on families going through emotional times. After their efforts, the kids got to go play in the splash pad and park, which they didn’t find too shabby either 😊 It was an easy way to do good while incorporating it into a fun, go-with-the-flow Summer day. We even came back to the park later that night for our Town’s Concerts in the Park night, which attending requires a non-perishable food donation from each family member for our local food bank, and buying snacks from Farmer’s Market concession stands were appreciated…other super simple ways to give back as a family that may seem too easy to matter, but they do!
To get your gang in the do-good spirit, you should definitely sign up for Local Love’s weekly “The Good News Letter”, where you can get a super short and sweet round up of inspiring stories, learnings and things to try in and around the Greater Toronto Area. Not just another notice to clog your over-stuffed inboxes, Mamas, this one will give you a dose of feel-good vibes we could all use to keep our weeks going on a high note.
Also, go show some love for Local Love on Social:
How are you and your family giving back to your communities? We’d love to know!