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Every Little Bit Counts: Raising Little Heroes Teaches Kids to Give Back

For most of my adult life, I have been searching for ways to contribute to society in a meaningful way.  I have this wish for my children: that they will grow into compassionate adults who know everything and everyone is connected and we should all be doing our best to take care of each other and the world in which we live.  As my children were growing before my eyes, I was all too aware of the fact I wasn’t doing anything tangible to help make this wish come true. I was waiting to have more time, more money and more energy. 

Then one day I realized I didn’t want to be teaching my kids that being generous is something you do when it’s convenient.  What if we never felt financially secure?  I decided to stop waiting and asked some friends if they felt the same way.

We started as a handful of families, coming together once a month in the summer of 2012 to take on simple projects. Since then we have grown into an organization called Raising Little Heroes with more than 100 local families on our mailing list and an East Coast chapter gearing up for their first project. Whether it’s an 8 year old helping pull weeds at our adopted park or a 2 year old drawing a cheerful picture for a family affected by a natural disaster; an infant inspiring her parents to get out there and do something to help make this world a better place or a parent holding a new mother’s baby so that mother can take 10  minutes to sort food donations; or, a pregnant, first time mother making a blanket for a baby in the NICU while chatting with other parents about the new journey she’s about to embark on.  There is something for all of us, a way to contribute regardless of how much.

raisinglittleheroes If you also feel an urge to get your kids involved, know you don’t have to start an organization like we did (although if you are interested in starting a Raising Little Heroes chapter, by all means drop us a line). Every little bit counts, so gather your family together and brainstorm. Maybe you have a neighbor who is sick and could use a hand with yardwork or a local food bank that would be happy to give you a tour and let you lend a hand sorting goods for an hour or two. 

 If you need help getting the ball rolling though, here are some ideas:

  •  Bake some brownies and have the kids make thank you cards for a local firehouse or police station and then hand deliver them

 For more ideas including larger scale efforts you can check out our website:

 Good luck and let us know how it goes!

Sarah Stith lives in Boulder with her husband and 2 children (3 and 6).  Before moving to Colorado, the family lived in Brooklyn, NY where Sarah worked as a dresser at The Lion King on Broadway.  She now works from home and manages to find time between breaking up arguments to build her organization, “Raising Little Heroes” (, a group devoted to finding volunteer opportunities for families with young children. She also writes about her life on her blog, “A Day in the Life of My Little Brood” (

Family Volunteer Opportunities: Rake Up Colorado, Serve Up Thanksgiving or Adopt a Safeway Store!

Volunteers of America is looking for families to help rake limited-income seniors’ yards in Adams, Arapahoe, Denver, Douglas and Jefferson counties. Take advantage of this group and family-friendly opportunity to help limited-income seniors with this important fall chore. YOU can make a difference!

When:  Saturday, November 2nd, 9:0 – 3:00 p.m. (times are flexible)

Where: Limited-income seniors’ yards in Adams, Arapahoe, Denver, Douglas and Jefferson counties

Who:    You and your family…children of all ages are welcome!

What:   Volunteers will be assigned to rake leaves at seniors’ yards throughout their service area. Together, the goal is to serve 250 seniors through this one day of service.

Sign-Up:  To sign-up to volunteer, please call Robin Sikora at 303-297-0408.


Thanksgiving Social and Bingo Event

You can help brighten up the holidays and bring joy to low-income seniors this Thanksgiving by joining VOA for November’s Family Volunteer Project!  Families can  participate in a Thanksgiving Social and Bingo Event at Westminster Commons. Westminster Commons is an affordable housing apartment complex for seniors age 62 years and over. It is an independent living facility and is categorized under Subsidized Housing through HUD.

When:     Saturday, November 23, 2013, 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Where:   Westminster Commons, 3180 W. 76th Ave, Westminster, CO 80030
Who:       You and your family…children of all ages are welcome!
What:      Hosting an appetizer  bar, making holiday cards and playing Bingo with low-income seniors at Westminster Commons.  Each family can bring their favorite appetizer to share.
RSVP:     Please sign up each member of your family through Volunteer Spot as well as an appetizer  to bring to the social. *Space is limited for this event. Sign-up is on a first come, first serve basis.


Adopt a Safeway Store

Partner with Volunteers of America and Safeway this holiday season by adopting a Safeway store during the End Hunger Food Drive. Families will sign up for two-week shifts to collect donated food from their adopted store and drop off  items collected at Volunteers of America, City Harvest Food Bank.

Where:   Safeway Stores all over the Denver Metro area

When:   First shift starts November 13, 2013. Last shift ends December 25, 2013

Who:       You and your family…children of all ages are welcome!

What:      Collecting donated food several times a week from local Safeway store and bringing items to City Harvest Food Bank.

RSVP:     Please sign up  your family for a two week shift at your closest Safeway store listed through Volunteer Spot. Once you have signed up you will be contacted with additional information via email.

Additional Opportunities: Volunteers (over the age of 14) are also needed to help sort and box donated food on Saturdays throughout the drive.  If you would like to help, please contact Andrew Wilson at (303) 297-0408