Blessing Bags (Teaching Your Child to Give Back)

There are a lot of things I wish for my children. At the top of that list is that they are loving, compassionate, and kind human beings. It’s important to me that they understand what a wonderful and privileged life they have and that not everyone lives like we do.
It’s never too early to teach your children to think about others and how they can give back. When Ben started whining about Disney World and why we couldn’t go back every year, I explained to him that some kids never get the chance to go. In his innocent 4 year old little mind, he just couldn’t comprehend why that was. And yet another teachable moment occurred. In an effort to teach Ben about helping others who have less or sometimes nothing at all, we created Blessing Bags.
I had a huge tub of samples and travel size toiletries that were just taking up space under the sink so we used these but you could also purchase travel size items from the store. 
We separated the items into girl and boy piles and Ben labeled each bag accordingly.
Next we filled each bags with the toiletries. I tried to make sure each one had at least a container of shampoo, body wash, deodorant, toothpaste, and feminine hygiene products for the girls.
To make them a little more personal, Ben colored pictures and stuck those in the bags too.
We also added some cracker packs and Capri Suns. You could use any snacks or drinks that have long expiration dates. In the end, I think we made 4 boy bags and 3 girl ones. 
We keep these bags in our car and if we see a person needing help, we give them a bag. I realize that not everyone with a sign is homeless or maybe the person just wants money, but I’m choosing to teach my child that we help and give, without judgement. Maybe the person will throw the bag away when we drive off or maybe they will eat the food and use the deodorant. And just maybe they will see the hand drawn Spiderman picture by a 4 year old and it will make them feel loved and cared about. Ben will have his whole life to become jaded by the world but for now, we just give.
*A note about safety: We never get out of the car to give the bags out. I roll down the window and hand it to the person, but always during the day and only in areas where there are lots of other cars or people around (usually stopped at a traffic light). It’s great to give, but safety is always important. 

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