Category - We Can Give Back

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Souper Bowl of Caring – A Family Meal That Gives Back
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Giving Back: 10 Places in the Twin Cities to Volunteer with Kids
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Giving Back as a Family: Second Harvest Heartland
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22 Ways to a Meaningful and Easy Earth Day
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2017 Twin Cities Earth Day Family Events
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Autism Society of MN Presents Steps of Hope
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Winter Capsule Wardrobe Project 2015
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Experience Feed My Starving Children with Family Fun Twin Cities
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Meet Our Hosts of the Great Give Back Challenge
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Greater Good: Making a Difference Together for People, Pets and the Planet

Souper Bowl of Caring – A Family Meal That Gives Back

Why do I love Ronald McDonald House’s Souper Bowl of Caring? Because it combines the best part of my day with an act of giving back to our community. How can you beat that?

Souper Bowl of Caring

We’ve all heard the benefits of regular family mealtimes. According to the Family Dinner Project, some of the specific benefits of family dinners are:

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Giving Back: 10 Places in the Twin Cities to Volunteer with Kids

While Family Fun Twin Cities is not a website focused on family volunteering, we like to feature family volunteer opportunities in November because we believe giving back with your family can be a lot of fun and teach important lessons. We have collected ten different opportunities to volunteer with kids.

Other ideas can be found here.


Volunteer with KidsOctober 31-November 4, 2016

• Candy for Troops/Books for Kids @ Fairview Clinics throughout the metro • Even the littlest goblins can bring Halloween candy into a clinic this week to donate to the military troops overseas.  For your donation, you will receive a new book and bless our service men and women who would love a little taste of home. Read More

Giving Back as a Family: Second Harvest Heartland

After our two-hour volunteer stint at Second Harvest Heartland, both kids wondered how soon they could come back and pack rice again.

“Tomorrow?” suggested Andy, the almost 10-year-old. He had had a blast filling boxes with 1 lb. bags of rice, checking to make sure the weight was correct, then taping up the boxes and loading them on pallets to be shipped off to smaller local food banks and pantries.

tm second harvest heartland 2His sister, who had turned 8 only days ago, spent her shift scooping the rice into those pound bags from a one-ton sack. “Now I understand why you have to be 8 to do this,” she remarked as we worked side-by-side with other members of our 4-H club and other community groups. She meant that the jobs available to the volunteers — labeling and packing the rice, using a machine to seal the bags, loading them into boxes — were not tasks her younger sisters were ready to take on.

tm second harvest heartland 3But the shift is perfect for grade school kids (and their adult caregivers) and manages to convey facts about hunger in Minnesota in a manner those kids can understand. For instance, it was news to my children that 1 in 10 people in our state aren’t getting enough to eat each day. Second Harvest Heartland works with donations from farms and companies to provide the equivalent of 74 million meals annually.

4,760 pounds of those 74 million meals were packed by our groups today! Above, Andy and Emily are unveiling the final amount.


Second Harvest Heartland welcomes both groups, families and individuals to come volunteer Tuesday-Saturday at their Golden Valley location. For more information on how to register, click here. Children must be 8 years old to participate and a waiver for each minor must be signed prior to work.


22 Ways to a Meaningful and Easy Earth Day

Easy Earth Day ActivitiesEarth Day is almost here. April 22 for those of us who need a reminder.  We’ve combed through the internet to find 22 of the easiest but meaningful activities to do with your kids.

I solemnly swear: None of them include milk cartons.

Activities include books to read, printables to color, projects that don’t take too much preparation, outdoor activities, and songs to sing. 

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2017 Twin Cities Earth Day Family Events

Earth Day Network’s first Earth Day was in 1970. It’s continuing mission — “to broaden and diversify the environmental movement worldwide and to mobilize it as the most effective vehicle to build a healthy, sustainable environment, address climate change, and protect the Earth for future generations.” For us, it’s a chance to teach our children about good stewardship of our planet, while getting out and enjoying the long-awaited spring. I think the spring thing may be why the Twin Cities Metro does not skimp on Earth Day activities and events. We have a sampling of Earth Day family events to get out with your kids and celebrate our environment this month.
Earth Day Family Events

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Autism Society of MN Presents Steps of Hope

Be an Autism Hero with the Autism Society of Minnesota 16th annual Steps of Hope Walk.
Autism Society of Minnesota

When I was a teenager, I had the opportunity to babysit for a little boy who had autism.  I can still see his face and his strawberry blonde hair as he tip-toed around his house with incredible agility.

Unfortunately, I was not fully prepared for how I could best care for him.  But thankfully, I had a friend who loved that little boy so much.

She knew exactly what he needed–when he needed space and when to be insistent.  She was a lifesaver for his family and him and a blessing to the whole community.

Tammy was just 15 years old and already an Autism Hero. Read More

Winter Capsule Wardrobe Project 2015

Thrift StoreIt’s that time again: Switching our capsules.
To be honest, the boys didn’t need many new items, a couple more sweatshirts (replacing t-shirts) and St. Paulanother pair of warm athletic pants. They were done.

The girls and mom on the other hand?  We had a few more holes to fill in.  FFTC partnered with Arc’s Value Village to bring you a real-life look at thrift shopping for your capsule wardrobe.  In doing this, Arc’s Value Village provided us a 20% discount for our purchases.  No other compensation was exchanged, and boy, do I have things to share with you!

This is going to be fun.

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Experience Feed My Starving Children with Family Fun Twin Cities

Last year, I visited Feed My Starving Children for the first time.  It was a wonderful experience.  And one we have done again and again with my kids. This year, you can join FFTC on Monday, November 23 from Noon-2 p.m. 

If you are interested in joining us, we have reserved 20 spots for you to join us.  They have very strict age guidelines.  All volunteers need to be over 5 years old and the adult to child ratio is very important to adhere to.  If you want to come, but need childcare, please let us know under the contact button.  We will arrange for you to be able to come.

Click here to register to join our FFTC Packing Team.

Read more to check out our experience.

Feed My Starving Children Read More

Meet Our Hosts of the Great Give Back Challenge

We Can Give Back MonthImagine this scenario.  It’s Thanksgiving morning, and you are busy getting ready. You are in up to your elbows in mashed potatoes or pumpkin pie filling.

What are some ways to get your hearts ready to give thanks?

The Hosts of the Great Give Back Challenge are excited to help you get your hearts ready for the upcoming holidays! If you haven’t been able to participate in the GGBC of 2015, here are some options for the week of Thanksgiving.

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Greater Good: Making a Difference Together for People, Pets and the Planet

Mall of America

 

“Over 35 million dollars have been donated and by the end of the year, it will be over 40 millions,” Rena Rasmussen of Greater Good  told me. Those numbers can’t be ignored, and Greater Good is proud to be making a difference in the world.  Read More

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