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Volunteer! Getting Your Child and Family Involved

— USA Freedom Corps
Updated on Dec 16, 2008

Volunteering as a Family

Volunteering as a family can help strengthen your family and bring you closer together. It’s also a great way to introduce your children to the benefits of giving back to their community and will teach them values such as respect and kindness. And, you’ll have fun! Whether your family chooses to help build a playground or a house, clean up a local park, or volunteer on your next family vacation, you’ll be surprised by what you can do and by the positive impact you will have on your community.

Ideas

Here are a few ideas, but don't feel feel limited by this list.  What is your family interested in?  How can you give back to your community while pursuing your interests?

Image of a flag

Join others in a Habitat for Humanity build. All levels of construction experience are welcome and needed, including novices. Visit www.habitat.org to find out how your family can make another family’s dream of homeownership come true.
 
Image of a flag Volunteer as a family to collect food and re-stock the shelves of your local food bank. Ask another family to join you. To find more ways to help, go to www.secondharvest.com.
 
Image of a flag Participate in your local Meals on Wheels program as a family. Click here to find the closest program to your home.
 
Image of a flag Join the KaBOOM! team in building a playground for kids. Be a part of a one-day playground build that will bring joy to kids for years to come. Visit www.kaboom.org for dates and cities of upcoming KaBOOM! builds.

Finding a Service Project For You or Your Child

You can find a service project for you or your child by contacting your local volunteer center, library, place of worship, senior center, police or fire stations, park service, or Citizen Corps council. Additionally, you can search for volunteer opportunities through the USA Freedom Corps Volunteer Network at www.usafreedomcorps.gov. The USA Freedom Corps Volunteer Network is the largest on-line clearing house of volunteer opportunities ever created.

Supporting your Child’s Service Project

Your support for your child’s interest in starting or participating in a service project is vital to their success. However, your commitment need not be a financial one. Instead, you can support your child’s project by being involved in their planning, helping to line up financial and in-kind sponsors, or loaning them materials to help them complete their goal.

Youth Service America’s Project Plan-It! is a great tool to help you and your child get started. This on-line project planning tool will help young people develop a custom made plan, timeline, budget, funding proposal, press release, and other helpful resources. You can find the tool kit by visiting http://www.ysa.org/planit.

Help Your Child Earn an Award From the President!

Image of PVSA logoEarning the President’s Volunteer Service Award is easy and is a great way to encourage your child! You can help them earn the Award by helping them keep track of their hours using our Record of Service Page.  Keep track of your own hours, too and earn the Award together!

When your child earns the Award, they will receive an official President’s Volunteer Service Award pin, a personalized certificate of achievement, a note of congratulations from the President of the United States, and a letter from the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation.

Earning the Award is easy! Youth 14 and younger can earn the Award by completing 50 or more hours of volunteer service in one year, adults earn the Award by completing 100 hours or more, and families earn the Award by completing at least 200 hours of service as a group, as long as each member completes at least 25 hours.

Plus, the hours you volunteer now will bring you and your child closer to the President’s Call to Service Award, which recognizes those who have made a sustained commitment to volunteer service by dedicating at least 4,000 hours over the course of their lifetimes.

Contact USA Freedom Corps

USA Freedom Corps' office is located in one of the historic townhouses off Lafayette Park just north of the White House. Our building was home to President Theodore Roosevelt while the White House was remodeled in 1902. To read more about the history of our building, click here.

If you have a story or an idea you’d like to share, let us know. Our address is:

USA Freedom Corps
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC  20502

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