If you’re raising future global changers like I am there’s one thing I’ve learned that makes a world of difference: starting at home. Although I understand the term “global changers” might suggest that one might have an awfully big pair of shoes to fill, I’ve learned that one small act of kindness or conservation can have a ripple effect, thus creating an impact beyond the originator. During a presentation in college, I shared what has become one of my favorite quotes:
“When I was a young man, I wanted to change the world. I found it was difficult to change the world, so I tried to change my nation.
When I found I couldn’t change the nation, I began to focus on my town. I couldn’t change the town and as an older man, I tried to change my family.
Now, as an old man, I realize the only thing I can change is myself, and suddenly I realize that if long ago I had changed myself, I could have made an impact on my family. My family and I could have made an impact on our town. Their impact could have changed the nation and I could indeed have changed the world.” ~ Unknown
Many of us are the parents of big dreamers. Our kids want to make a difference in the world. They hear stories in their classroom or on television and take it as a call to action. They remind us to donate to causes and to throw our bottles away in the right bin. They are curious about social issues such as homelessness. They accompany us to charitable events and are most often eager to help.
I believe in giving our children the opportunity to give back. I believe in instilling and modeling compassion and humility as parents. I believe that these are all lessons that can first start at home. These are the things that have the ability to become second nature. These are the things that can, directly or indirectly, have a ripple effect — changing our children, our family, our communities, our nation and the world.
In support of our pint sized philanthropists and conservationists, I wanted to share ways that kids can make a difference in the world — without even leaving the house (and as an added incentive many of these things can be done whilst in pajamas).