Both Brandon and I were fortunate enough to have opportunities through our parents at young ages to experience giving back and doing things in our local community. We knew early on we wanted to install some of these core values and experiences to our boys too, so we have tried to start them young!
In college, we both had many opportunities to volunteer our time with our fraternity and sorority. BTR was even the volunteer coordinator for our entire college’s Americorps program and organized large events in St. Louis that helped preschool students and their families. I personally remember playing with little ones on the playground once a week for an entire semester!
We have continued to be involved in our local community. I am a part of the Junior Service Club where we not only raise funds but also donate our time directly to organizations in our community. Brandon also sits on a foundation board that helps students in the Belleville school district.
One of the first service activities we have done with the boys is now a summer tradition! We sign up to deliver Meals on Wheels to homebound seniors in our community. While Jude has been doing this since the year he was born, I think this was the first year that it clicked and he understood how important our job was. He got a little whiney as it’s a lot of driving and takes a while to finish our route. But along the way we talk about how the people we are taking meals to are relying on us to get them their food on a weekly basis because they can’t drive or may not have anyone that can go to the store for them. Jude then asked if we were delivering again the next week and when I told him no he was so concerned that the next driver would forget or not do something right. So hopefully something was sinking in and I love his little heart for caring so much! The boys enjoy walking to some of the doors with me and of course, the seniors love seeing them and saying hi!
I am so glad to be partnering with COUNTRY Financial because they share our family’s values for helping the local community. Their grant program supports many local organizations that are doing work to help families build their financial health and plan for the future.
We hope to do more service activities in addition to Meals on Wheels in the future and hopefully pass down some of our passion for helping others to our boys.