• November 29, 2021 11:13 AM | Anonymous

    Does the word "crafting" make you want to bury your head in a pile of pompoms? Will the thought of arts-and-crafts set you off in a glitter-filled frenzy? Well, before you take off screaming from the sight of a hot glue gun, here's what the "crafting" in Crafting Kind Kids really means.

    But first let's define what crafting is. The old school dictionary definition of CRAFTING is this: "to make or produce with care, where the imagination and hand of the maker are evident". For us in this modern day context, crafting can simply mean to take an idea and turn it into something tangible and beautiful. 

    So, then, what does "crafting" have to do with kids volunteering? Here are 5 reasons there's more to Crafting Kind Kids than mere paper, scissors and glue. 


    We're crafting kind humans. Just like learning a language or training for a 5K, volunteering is a skill that must be developed and practiced. No different than expanding your brain or firing up your muscles, crafting kind little humans is something that must be honed each and every day. Getting out and giving back through fun, simple and age-appropriate service projects is an easy way to craft a kind(er) kid. 

    There's a brush for you in our volunteering multipack.  Are some of the crafting kind family volunteer opportunities craft-related? Yes, because kids are awesomely creative and imaginative... and because kids are more skilled than our adult-drawn stick figures!  Also, many of our non-profit partners have crafty needs that kids can easily do, like beading donor thank you bracelets or painting holiday ornaments that they can then give out to their clients in need.

    However, there's more to Crafting (Kind Kids) than stickers and crayons. There are monthly litter cleanups at a local park as well as learning how to make "diaper burritos" with the Diaper Bank or putting together gardening kits for underserved schools. Whatever your family's volunteer preference, there is always something to choose from in our multipack of crafty paintbrushes!

    "Do whatever good you can in whatever way works for you."~  Doing Good Together

    Craftivism is the new self-care.  As important as pizza and movie nights are to a family's decompressing after a long week, so too is getting up early on a weekend morning to serve a community need.  Whether that's decorating a pet food donation box or preparing soil for a community garden's worm bin, the easiest way to combat the stresses of the world (kid or adult-sized) is to get out and give back in a meaningful, screen-free, intentional way. 

    There's kindness in crafting.  When kids and families come together in a unified way to serve a common need, the kindness is palpable. Kids and families, who've never met one another because they live in different corners of our community, become friendly by the end of a 90-minute volunteering project. Whether it's two families working together to clean a park or a group of 20 kids and families spread throughout a room to craft holiday decor for a local shelter, there is always friendly chit chat, sharing of supplies and kids jumping in to help a fellow Kid Volunteer complete a project. Crafting truly is the ultimate expression of kindness.

    Storytelling is an art and craft. When families walk away from a volunteer project, they leave with a story to tell. Maybe it's a story about the people they volunteered alongside or a story about driving to a side of town they've never been before. It could be a story about the volunteer project itself or a story about how the benefiting organization will now be able to help more people. There is always a give-back story to craft and curious questions to answer.

    Which brings us back to where we started - crafting kind humans. Crafting kindness is more than just paper, scissors and glue; it's a skill that is developed and applied through the practice of getting out and giving back. It's about taking an idea (e.g. help homebound seniors feel less lonely) and turning it into something tangible and beautiful (e.g. handmade cards for seniors and their caregivers).

    How can your family craft kindness with imagination and skill to make it a better community for others?

    Crafting Kind Kids is a kids + family volunteering organization 
    that works with a variety of local non-profits to develop and create family-friendly volunteering opportunities for kids ages 5 and up in Tucson. You're never too young to volunteer. To start volunteering with your own kids, visit us today!

  • September 20, 2021 11:57 AM | Anonymous

    When my daughter was nine years old, we participated in a family-friendly fundraiser for a local organization. During the typical rush of getting three young kids out the door, dressed and each with enough snacks to get them 20 minutes across town, my nine year old had a mild meltdown. 

    What I've now come to realize is standard fare in the preteen-tween world, my nine year old was suddenly hyper-focused on her outfit, which other kids would be in attendance and if her school/social world overlap at this mandated family outing to do good. 

    After much compromise and some high stakes negotiation, the right t-shirt was chosen and she bounced back to her lowkey self. However, mom took a little longer to recover. Here we were going out to do something positive for struggling children and my daughter cared more about what she was wearing?! Something was amiss; she just wasn't making the connection.

    HOW regular volunteering has changed Our kids

    So I set out on a journey of finding opportunities to take my daughter out of her small world and into the community to see what needs exist beyond her cushy existence. And now three years later, she and I have done all sorts of interesting, perspective-building volunteering. From bagging peppers at a food bank to sorting through old hotel bottles of shampoo to make homeless hygiene kits to planting garlic and potatoes for residents at an affordable housing apartment. We've done a lot and her worldview has greatly expanded.

    Now with her two younger brothers in tow, rushing out of the house for a mandated family outing to do good sees much less eye-rolling and is definitely free of meltdowns and fashion dramas! But, it took a couple years of ongoing dedication by this busy mom of three, to have my trio understand the blessings in their lives and the needs in someone else's life. To have them develop the perspective that there is so much more beyond the every day world they know. And now it's time for me to share these experiences and pay it forward to other families.

    "It's not uncommon for volunteers to see their own lives in a different light..." 
    ~ Good Deeds Day

    These days we seem to have discussions about causes and community needs with regularity. And my son will often regale us with school cafeteria conversations he has with his classmates who toss away lightly eaten lunches and the hungry kids across town who'd love to have that lunch.

    The truth is that getting out and giving back takes time. It requires mom or dad finding the energy in an already busy life to schedule in volunteering. It takes lots of ongoing convos with the kids to help them make the connection between their "good deed" and the people who will benefit as a result. But, good things take time. So while you're waiting for that day, we hope to see you out there on your own mandated family outing to do good.

    Crafting Kind Kids is a kids + family volunteering organization that works with a variety of local non-profits to develop and create family-friendly volunteering opportunities for kids ages 5 and up in Tucson. You're never too young to volunteer. To start volunteering with your own kids, visit us today!

  • July 26, 2021 9:15 AM | Anonymous

    Our daughter, much to her pre-teen angst and disappointment, is still without a cell phone. The grudgingly-made compromise has been to set up a group text chat with her middle school friends via mom's phone. And does mom occasionally check out the latest chit chat and dramas  of 11 and 12 year old girls? Of course she does! 

    It was during one such scroll through the emoji-filled landscape of tween texting that I came across an exchange between my daughter and a friend. This friend was lamenting how horrible her summer has been thus far because she was having to do some summertime homework as well as participate in sports practice. It was just the worst summer ever says the friend.

    To her credit, my daughter responded to this fellow 12 year old that she too was doing summer school, attending weekday swim team practice and  is stuck at home with her two little brothers. And guess what, friend? You'll survive!

    How to Build Kindness and Perspective in Kids

    Slightly shocked at the maturity of this response, I asked her about the exchange. She simply responded that there are so many other kids who don't have the opportunities that she and her friends have each summer and that this particular friend just "needs to get over it". 

    Was this preteen sense of perspective the direct result of dragging her outside of her comfort bubble and exposing her to all sorts of people with vastly different needs than she has? This hopeful mom wants to think so!

    Regardless of how she came to provide a little dose of summertime reality to a friend, the ability to understand the potential lack in someone else's life and the abundance in hers is one of the many benefits of volunteering at a young age. Being able to step into another person's shoes is a critical skill that research suggests helps with making friends and forming social relationships (via Doing Good Together, June 2021).

    Having perspective makes us more willing to help others and to act with compassion. 

    Whether this moment of tween perspective-taking was a total fluke or the making of a compassionate person, only time will tell. But this mom will celebrate each and every time she witnesses her kids taking even the smallest dose of perspective. ♥

    Crafting Kind Kids is a kids + family volunteering organization that works with a variety of local non-profits to develop and create family-friendly volunteering opportunities for kids ages 5 and up in Tucson. You're never too young to volunteer ♥ To start volunteering with your own kids, visit us today!

Our Mission

To provide young children with hands-on opportunities to make their community a better place to live and to foster a joy of giving to others through age-appropriate volunteering activities.

Crafting Kind KidsTM  is a 501(c)(3) organization.
EIN  86-3132063

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Tucson, AZ 85750

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