What kid doesn’t love McDonald’s? Chicken McNuggets, Happy Meal toys, indoor playgrounds, fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies. What’s not to like?
Of course, your kids DO know about the Ronald McDonald House, right?
Come to think of it, I’m not sure my kids know about it. Hang on a minute… Okay. Now they know.
Anyway, there are lots of ways kids can help out their favorite clown and get in on the philanthropic action. Whether they want to serve from the security of their own home or make a trip to an actual House, there are lots of easy ways kids can get involved.
This is also a great way to fulfill service requirements (and a few extra requirements, depending on your chosen act of service) in the Faith in God, Personal Progress, Duty to God or Scouting programs. A handy list of links to those requirements is at the end of this post.
First, what can kids do to help?
* Collect or make greeting cards to donate to your local House. Homemade cards, new cards, or the fronts of used cards are all useful. Ronald McDonald House gives these to families, who can send them to their ill child or give them out as thank you notes.
* Collect pop tabs. Not all chapters participate in this program, so check first. Your local chapter will also be able to tell you if there are drop-off locations elsewhere in your community, or provide you with pop tab collection containers to place in new areas. This is a great way to help Houses raise much-needed funds.
* Provide service at the House. Contact your local House to see what they need. You can help serve meals, plant flowers or do some cleaning.
* Sponsor a food drive to help stock their pantry with non-perishable goods.
* Collect items for a community yard sale and donate the proceeds.
* Help prepare and serve dinner at the House.
* Plan an activity for the children living at the house, like a face-painting party or story hour.
* Bake homemade cookies, decorate them, and donate them to families staying at your local House.
* Wash the cars of the families staying at the House.
* Make quilts for the beds. Check with the House first to see what’s needed. Some Houses have nicely decorated, themed rooms (often donated to the House by individuals or groups) and so may not be in need of this. Other Houses have worn bedding and would greatly appreciate something new and fresh!
The needs of these Houses is huge and varied. You’re bound to find something of interest to your son or daughter. For more information about Ronald McDonald House Charities or to find a local House, go to the official website right HERE.
Related LDS Youth Program and Scouting Program Requirements:
Faith in God – Serving Others requirement 1: “Read and discuss the parable of the good Samaritan (see Luke 10:30–37). Plan and complete a service project that helps a family member or neighbor. After completing the project, discuss how it helped your faith grow stronger.”
Faith in God – Serving Others requirement 4: “Plan, prepare, and serve a nutritious meal. ”
Faith in God – Serving Others requirement 7: “Plan and hold a parent-child activity, such as a dinner, picnic, hike, day trip, or service project.”
Faith in God – Serving Others requirement 8: “Read the twelfth article of faith. Discuss what it means to be a good citizen and how your actions can affect others. ”
Tiger cub scout elective 11: “Help collect food, clothing or toys for needy families with your den or pack.”
Tiger cub scout elective 12: “Make at least two cards or decorations and take them to a hospital or long-term care facility.”
Wolf cub scout elective 9b/c: “Make a gift or toy like one of these (examples shown in book) and give it to someone.”
Bear cub scout requirement 9a: “With an adult, bake cookies.”
Bear cub scout elective 21b: “Help with a garage sale or rummage sale. This can be with your family or a neighbor, or it can be a church, school, or pack event.”
Citizenship cub scout belt loop requirement 3:“Participate in a family, den, or school service project.”
Reading and Writing cub scout pin requirement 2: “Read a book to a child or group of children.”
Personal Progress Good Works requirement 6: “Spend at least three hours giving service outside your family. Ask your ward or branch Relief Society president or a community leader for suggestions for service. For example, you might take care of children while parents attend the temple; collect, make, or recondition toys or games for a nursery; accept an assignment to clean the meetinghouse; or perform errands for or read to a homebound person or others in need. Record in your journal the reactions of the person you served and possible goals for future service opportunities.”
Second class boy scout rank requirement 5: “Participate in an approved (minimum of one hour) service project. ”
Star boy scout rank requirement 4: “While a First Class Scout, take part in service projects totaling at least 6 hours of work. These projects must be approved by your Scoutmaster.”
Life boy scout rank requirement 4: “While a Star Scout, take part in service projects totaling at least 6 hours of work. These projects must be approved by your Scoutmaster. ”
This is a good idea for the Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project if you turn it into something significant, perhaps raising funds in order to redecorate and update rooms at the Ronald McDonald House.
Citizenship in the Community merit badge requirement 7, which includes learning about a community service organization and donating at least 8 hours serving that organization.
Do service at the Ronald McDonald House as part of the requirements to earn the Boy Scout Special Award in honor of the late, great Jimmy Stewart, the James M. Stewart Good Citizenship award.
Venturing Religious Life Bronze Award requirement 3: “ Plan and lead a service project such as helping to build a Habitat for Humanity house, participating in a community cleanup project, or taking on a fix-up project for a nursing home or nursery.”
Choose Ronald McDonald House Charities as your organization to serve as part of the Venturing TRUST Award requirements.
Serve the Ronald McDonald House as part of the “Serve Others” requirements in the Duty to God program.