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15 tips for a summer of generosity

Summer is a great time to not only relax with the family but also to share the joy of giving. From overflowing backyard gardens to helping with VBS, there are numerous ways to express generosity.

Metro Voice has added to a list from the National Christian Foundation suggesting ways that families can practice generosity.

  • Take a vacation from digital. Close the laptop, put down your phone and give the gift of uninterrupted time to your family and friends. Make it a priority to savor moments together. Encourage everyone to look at life through each other’s eyes rather than through the lens of a phone’s camera or by scrolling through social media.
  • Go on a family giving adventure. Set up some time with an organization and surprise your kids or grandkids with a service opportunity.
  • Sponsor a kid at Summer Camp. Many children come from families who are not financially able to send them to a Summer Camp. Plus, some camps risk closing for a lack of volunteers. Check out this article on how you can help.
  • Explore your family giving story. Where do your beliefs about money and giving come from, and what does the next generation believe? Learn how to tell your giving story and take advantage of time together this summer to ask questions that could affect your legacy.
  • Empower someone to make their first grant. Share the joy of generosity by opening a giving fund for a family member, friend or employee. Tell them how you use the fund, choose charities and budget for giving. Then plan a celebration for when they make their first grant. Consider Metro Voice and support Christian journalism.
  • Volunteer to help neighbors take worry-free trips. In an era of increasing crime, many families are hesitant to leave their homes unattended for a summer trip. Volunteer to watch the homes of neighbors. If possible, mow their lawns before they return.
  • Share your bounty. If your garden is overflowing or it’s time to empty your fridge before vacation, donate to a community fridge near you. Find one near you at org, or learn how to start one in your neighborhood.
  • Always stop at lemonade stands. A Metro Voice favorite! Encourage kids in their efforts to raise money. With garage sales aplenty, there’s bound to be a lemonade stand near you.
  • Encourage your encouragers. Pick up the phone or schedule a coffee date to tell your spouse, parent, grandparent or someone else who has influenced you just how much they have blessed you. Start with. “The greatest gift you ever gave me was _____” or “I want you to know how much it meant to me when you _____.”
  • Know a single mom? Invite her kids to join yours at your favorite water park or other Summer activity. Better yet, take the kids with you on vacation. The mom will appreciate some time to herself, knowing the kids are in good hands.
  • Get ahead on Christmas generosity in July. As you vacation this summer, dream big about how God wants you to give in the future. Now is a great time to start planning your year-end giving, before the rush of autumn kicks in.
  • Keep a generosity journal. Take some time out on vacation to reflect on your giving journey. Your journal will come in handy when you create your giving strategy.
  • Mow an elderly neighbor’s yard. Grass can grow pretty quick this time of  year. For the elderly, the cost of having it done can be prohibitive and the heat dangerous. Offer to do it for them.
  • Make someone’s day with a playlist. Support a friend with a Spotify playlist of worship songs or music that speaks to their situation. Send it along with a note such as, “Listen to this when you’re lonely on the long drive home” or “play this to pump you up before your busy day.”
  • Cultivate joy with a thankfulness jar. Take time to savor the blessings that come your way each day by jotting them down on a scrap of paper and placing them in a special jar. Make sure the whole family participates. Then open the jar on Labor Day to look back on the highlights of your generous summer.

–Alan Goforth and Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice