It’s fun teaching your little witches and superheroes there’s more to Halloween than face paint and sweet candy treats. You can get extra mileage out of those adorable costumes while simultaneously giving back to the community by exploring fall volunteer opportunities at a senior care center near you.
Snaggle-tooth smiles and wild clothing choices are sure to bring smiles to folks who may not otherwise see children dressed up for Halloween. Plus, it’s a chance for teens to get into the spirit, even if they only sport a seasonal T-shirt or rainbow wig. Start by learning about family-friendly Halloween volunteer opportunities near you. Call the local senior center, nursing home, or assisted living facility, and ask to speak to the volunteer coordinator or activities director. Then, discuss one of these spooktacular ideas!
Ask if your children can go door-to-door sharing smiles and asking for treats. Some senior facilities host public trick-or-treat hours, just for this purpose. The kids can also visit individual tables at the end of dinner service, which keeps everyone in one central area of the building.
Host A Halloween Parade
Is the senior center hosting a Halloween dinner or movie night? Kick things off by gathering the neighborhood kids and parading down the halls, letting them show off their costumes. The kids can hand out candy or little cards with Halloween jokes (in large spooky print) to the seniors as they pass by!
The weekend before Halloween, help the residents get into the holiday mood by carving pumpkins together. Use real squashes and gourds, or opt for soft, spongy craft pumpkins. If you want to keep the activity free of sharp objects, use glue, ribbons, markers, googly eyes, pom-pom balls, and yarn todecorate the pumpkins.
Hang Halloween Decorations
Do you love crafts? Offer to bring in supplies to trace, cut out, and color Halloween decorations to hang around the building. The seniors and children can work together to create unique paper ghosts, witch hats, and pumpkins to brighten up the environment.
Have your teen contact a local charity to ask if they have any fall volunteer opportunities, such as raising money over Halloween. I love the idea of sponsoring the adoption fee for a black cat at an animal shelter, making it easier for the pet to find his forever home. The child can turn a tissue box into a festive black cat or pumpkin donation jar and trick-or-treat for coins at the senior center, then around the neighborhood!
The elderly adore visitors, especially if they’re dolled up in tiny costumes and ready for a conversation. Help bring the fall season to life by spending a few hours on Halloween with those who may not get to see trick-or-treaters otherwise. Share your Halloween volunteer opportunities (and pictures!) with us on Twitter.
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Why It’s Good
Bringing a smile to others is always a good thing! It's even better when it includes silly costumes, candy, and a mug of hot cocoa. This Halloween, add a visit to your local senior care facility and kick off the season by sharing your joy with others and being a positive role model for your kids.