How to encourage kids to be giving

Kathy Eldon, Founder & President of Creative Visions Foundations shares advice for parents on how to teach their kids to be more giving and helpful people
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How to encourage kids to be giving

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The very best way to get your child interested in giving and helping others is to be a giving person who likes to help others. Now sometimes that's a stretch, I know it. But the children model themselves upon their parents or other authority figures or other figures that you may not want to have them modeling after. But a child is going to notice if you care about somebody in the super market, if somebody's having a tough time or if somebody needs help carrying something or if your neighbor is a shut-in or if somebody just needs a helping hand. And if you give the child the task to go and help – I remember myself taking May baskets to the elderly lady who lived next door to me. And it imbued a really life long habit in wanting to have that good feeling of having her open the door and see me. I think that as parents we have to be the models… or grandparents… we have to be the models of goodness and giving. And sometimes it's really a stretch, but having children takes us to a higher level. We can become very cynical as young people in our lives, but I think when you're a parent, you just got to go to that higher space if you possibly can.

Kathy Eldon, Founder & President of Creative Visions Foundations shares advice for parents on how to teach their kids to be more giving and helpful people

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Kathy Eldon

Parent with a Purpose and Founder & CEO, Creative Visions Foundation

Kathy Eldon was born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She graduated from Wellesley College and has since worked as an art teacher, television presenter, magazine editor, journalist, media consultant and a television and film producer in Kenya, England and the United States. She has written seventeen books on a variety of subjects including Angel Catcher, a Journal of Loss and Remembrance; Soul Catcher: a Journal to Help You Become Who You Really Are; and Love Catcher, a Journal to Invite more Love in Your Life, all published by Chronicle Books. The journals were co-authored with her daughter Amy, who is her partner in Creative Visions, a television and film production company.

Kathy was the Executive Producer of the 1999 Emmy nominated Turner Broadcasting two-hour documentary, Dying to tell the Story, about journalists who risk their lives to do their jobs, which was conceived of and presented by Amy Eldon. In l999 Kathy exec-produced a one-hour CNN documentary, Soldiers of Peace: A Children's Crusade, about the Colombian children's peace movement, nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Both films were distributed internationally to over 220 countries. Kathy's company also produced Lost in Africa, a family feature film distributed by Columbia Pictures internationally.

Kathy is currently producing a feature film about her son, artist and Reuters photographer Dan Eldon, who was stoned to death at the age of 22 in Somalia. In May, 2011, Kathy and Amy exec-produced, together with Julia Roberts, "Extraordinary Moms," a tribute to the power of mothers to change the world around them. Hosted by Julia Roberts, the special featured Hillary Clinton, Rosie O'Donnell and Christiane Amanpour.

Kathy edited The Journey is the Destination, a collection of Dan's journal pages which was published by Chronicle Books. Kathy and Amy are co-founders of Creative Visions Foundation, which supports "creative activists" who use media and the arts to create positive change. Over the past 10 years the foundation has incubated more than 80 projects and productions on five continents, touching the lives of more than 10 million people.

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