8 Easy Ways Parents Can Volunteer

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Getting more involved in a child's life is often a rewarding way for parents to connect and spend extra time with their young ones. Contrary to what some may believe, you do not have to be a stay-at-home parent or even a part-time-parent to volunteer your time or services. Because volunteering is a donation of time, parents decide exactly how much they spend based on their schedules and desire to help.

Bring Food

You don't have to be a pastry chef to offer your baking or cooking services. Food is often needed for a variety of events, from fundraisers and sports events to parent-teacher conferences and beyond. A dozen or so cookies is a kind gesture that doesn't require much time.

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Start a Recycling Organization

In some cities, recycling isn't a given. As a result, schools resort to throwing everything away because hiring an expensive private recycling company doesn't fit into the annual budget. Start on a small scale to help recycle within your child's classroom. If successful, consider inviting other parents to help.

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Use Your Green Thumb

Landscaping is often expensive when done by a professional company, so some schools and organizations rely on the help of volunteers. You may want to volunteer over the weekend with your child, or help during the school day if that works better with your schedule. Work includes weeding, planting, mowing and manicuring the campus in general.

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Extra chaperones are often needed for school field trips. Some field trips are only a few hours long, while others may last for up to a few days. Call your school and speak to your child's teachers to learn about upcoming chaperone opportunities. Your child may also bring home papers regarding chaperone opportunities, so stay on the lookout if the idea interests you.

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Buy Classroom Supplies

Not all schools or teachers are fortunate enough to have a large budget for their classrooms. Call the school, or your child's teacher, to see if anyone needs any extra supplies for the year. Even a small donation can ensure that all students in a classroom have the proper supplies, better enabling a healthy learning environment.

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Get Involved with Fundraisers

The next time your child brings home a fundraising opportunity, don't just push the paper aside. Helping your child do well with the fundraiser is an excellent opportunity to bond and raise money for a school. And while goods sold as fundraisers are often more expensive, the splurge is justified because it's just as much a donation as it is a purchase.

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Library Volunteer

Elementary, middle and even high school libraries are often inundated with work. From filing books and re-entering recently returned books to sweeping the floors at night, parents can volunteer their time during the day or evening.

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Schools, local programs and even 4-H events require experts in certain fields to help judge contests. Though parents shouldn't judge a contest their own child participates in, they can judge contests for those in a different age bracket or subject.

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