School in our area begins in a couple of weeks. Many students will start the first day of school without any supplies. When they run out of any supplies they do manage to possess, their parents won’t replace them. Imagine how difficult it can be for children to have no materials for classwork or homework. You and your kids can help change that, have fun and you can teach your kids godly money skills at the same time.
Box retailers and school supply stores begin having special sales on limited items from mid-July until well into September. Have your kids pull the ads out of the Sunday paper each week. Get them to search the ads for special deals on school supplies. Can they find any coupons to use with the deals? Which stores have better deals? Are the deals worth it if you have to drive out of your way to purchase them? Do you have a budget for this service project? How many school supplies can they get with the amount budgeted? Use these questions and more to start teaching your kids godly money concepts of budgeting and being careful with our money so we can give more back to God and help other people.
After you have made a shopping plan, take your kids with you to purchase the supplies. Many churches have school supply drives which will allow your kids to help package various supplies for individual students. Or call a public school with a large number of students who get free lunches. Ask them how they would like the supplies packaged and delivered. Then take your children with you when you deliver them.
Make friends with a teacher in one of those schools. A lot of organizations provide school supplies at the beginning of the year, but few help with supply needs later during the school year. See if your family can afford to help meet the supply needs of one of the teacher’s students or her entire class for supply replacement needs.
If possible, help your children to get to know some of these children. Encourage them to find the things they have in common. If your situation allows, invite the children and their families to attend church. Use this as an opportunity for your family to serve others, your kids to serve while learning about how God wants us to handle our money and as a way to teach your kids how to share their faith. What a great way to start the new school year!