September 11, 2016 marked the fifteenth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. With heavy hearts millions honored and remembered the nearly 3,000 lives lost. In the wake of this tragedy supporters rushed to establish dozens of nonprofits that could address victims’ pressing and long-term needs. Individuals came together to actively contribute their time, money, and resources to once again show that the United States of America is one nation, one community. And fifteen years later these philanthropic foundations continually support those in need.
This sparked my interest to question if, or what kind of, conversations are being discussed amongst our younger generations in terms of community and public service. How can educators transform the word ‘philanthropy’ into something meaningful to students? I believe educators should be encouraged to create projects or propose field trips designed for their students to have a hands on experience with civic engagement. This is exactly what A Legacy of Giving hopes to accomplish for years to come. An innovative education and service learning program that resides under Austin Community Foundation, a public charity, hopes to empower children to become more engaged in improving their communities so to grow a generation of givers.
Equipping students with a passion for volunteerism and philanthropy can lead to great things! Especially when the nation is in peril, or during a time of great need our younger citizens will have the tools to provide effective support.
It’s important for students to understand that philanthropy isn’t synonymous with wealth. Anyone, regardless of socioeconomic status can roll up his or her sleeves to tackle a problem. For a student to truly grasp that what they do counts is perhaps the greatest lesson we can teach.
Below are a few links to learn more about A Legacy of Giving and ways to implement philanthropy into the classroom: