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4 Ways Parents Can Turn The “Gimme Season”

Into the “Giving Season” For Children & Teens

Let’s face it, Christmas in America sure seems to be a lot more about “gimme, gettin’, and greed” than “generosity, giving, and gratefulness.”  So, as parents, what can we do to help raise generous kids not only at Christmas but year around?

From my experience raising my three children, here’s 4 E’s that can help you have some practical ways you can raise generous kids. 

·        EVENTS: Before Christmas a number of years ago I asked our kids, "Whose birthday is it?  Who should get the biggest presents?"  They answered it was Jesus’ birthday and He should get the biggest presents.  But they asked, “how can we give birthday presents to Jesus?”  I explained to them that when we give gifts to the lonely and the least, we are giving "birthday presents" to Jesus.  So, we started something in our family that has now become a Christmas tradition.  In our family, on Christmas eve after our kids open up their presents we give each of our kids an envelope with hundreds of dollars and a list of "approved" needy people , organizations, or projects.  Each child has the choice of where they want the money in their envelope to go so they can help give birthday presents to Jesus.  Each child then explains to the rest of the family where they gave the money and why.  In addition to Christmas, you can also include acts of generosity in other events throughout the year by being intentional.  For a kid’s birthday party, have everyone bring a non-perishable food item that can be given to a food pantry to serve the needy.  At Thanksgiving, invite foreigners to join you for Thanksgiving dinner.  In our family, we normally have 20+ people from 5-10 countries at our house for Thanksgiving.  When you tie acts of generosity into major events during the year, the message of giving gets imprinted onto your children’s hearts, minds, and memories. 

·       ENVELOPES: Give each of your children 3 envelopes and have the draw/design their own envelopes for Giving, Savings, and Spending.  Whenever they get any money, the money is divided into the three envelopes to help shape their understanding of the three primary purposes of money.  We started this practice when our children were preschoolers and is still happening now that our kids our teenagers.  Our national research shows that many adults who are faithful and generous givers to religious/charitable causes started this practice when they were living at home.

·       EXPERIENCES: Take your children to help feed the homeless at Thanksgiving or Christmas, go on an overseas trip to help the needy, or be a Secret Santa to a family at Christmas leaving presents for a needy family front door, ringing the doorbell, and hurrying away before they come to the door.  When my oldest son turned 13 I took him on a 3 week trip in four countries in Eastern Europe.  Because of this experience, he has gone back to Romania to help serve poor gypsy families for  five weeks over the summer and four months during the school year.

·       EXPOSURE: It is important to expose your yourself and your family to the Scriptures on generosity/finances and to your personal financial practices.  I wrote the www.GenerousLife.org 40 Day book that has 450,000 copies in print and is being translated into over 40 foreign languages.  But before it was a bestseller, it was a Kinkos-printed document that I gave to every family in my church to read together around the kitchen table at breakfast or dinner.  One day we were going through one of the worksheets with our children about what organizations we gave money to.  Our 7 year old stopped us and said, “Dad, if we didn’t give $1000 to that camp, do you know how many more video camps you could buy me?!”  I explained to my 7 year old that in our family the most exciting thing we do is give to help others and that we would never want to buy a $1000 in video games.  This was a teachable moment for my 7 year old that none of us has ever forgotten.

With these 4 E’s in place, you will be headed in the right direction to raising generous, giving, and grateful kids that will likely turn into generous, giving, and grateful adults!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: BRIAN KLUTH is known as “America’s Giving Guy.”  He is a bestselling author of  www.GenerousLife.org, www.MyFamilyOrganizer.org and www.GodIsYourProvider.com.  Brian is the speaker for the www.GiveWithJoy.org radio program and he is regularly heard on talk shows or quoted in news stories across the country. 

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“Brian Kluth understands exactly what I need for a perfect sound bite or a longer interview.
I've been in radio/TV for almost 50 years and
Brian is a delight to interview because he is
fully-versed on the subject and is savvy enough
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or a network newsroom."
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He is real and our audience responded very positively to his interview.”

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Visual Media Graphs & Talking Points

While other experts can talk one facet of giving, Brian is a multifaceted leading authority on generosity with experience as a media guest, national researcher, bestselling author and writer, and radio host. His generosity work or interviews have been featured on all the major TV networks, thousands of radio stations, magazines, and major newspapers.  Brian also practices generosity by living on a 5-figure salary but giving 6-figures to charitable causes and to encourage greater generosity across the United States and around the world.  

For each interview, Brian can provide graphs with key talking points or screen shots.  These graphs are especially helpful for TV news stories or talk show interviews. 

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"The Giving Guy", Brian Kluth's Availability and Contact Information

AVAILABILITY: 24/7 by phone or by arrangement for live, pre-recorded, Skype, or affiliate station interviews.

OFFICE/HOME: 719-594-0240  CELL: 719-930-4000

LOCATION: Colorado Springs/Denver TIME ZONE: Mountain

WEBSITE: www.BrianKluth.com   EMAIL: bk@kluth.org



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