The Most Wonderful Time of Year to Volunteer: Helping out at Comfort Cases with Kids

[Note:  This post was written by KFDC Contributor Emily Moise, a local writer and mom of two young children.   She always has excellent recommendations for kids’ activities around the DC area. See some of them here and here.]

 

Thanksgiving feasts and eight crazy nights and advent countdowns, oh my! Does your holiday season cup runneth over yet? December has only just begun, but if you are already feeling the weight of excess, this post about volunteering is for you.

In my Chrismukkah celebrating household, we have to work hard to make the holidays about traditions and family — because with two little ones, the presents can quickly take center stage. We knew that, like many, our traditions would need to involve giving back.

My [sometimes] mature preschooler seemed ready to get a first-hand lesson about privilege this year. I started looking for ways to expose her to those less fortunate, and for us to give back together. And guess what?  Volunteer opportunities for four-year-olds do exist!

Comfort Cases, based in Rockville, MD, is a national organization that provides comfort and personal care items to youth entering the foster care system. Kids who literally have nothing but trash bags of belongings, are given brand new backpacks with brand new items inside.

Not only did this seem like the perfect place for us to volunteer, they also had lots of available time slots to choose from and no restrictions on age. They currently require proof of Covid vaccination or negative test results for volunteers age 12 or older.

Our service day was run by volunteers, creating a relaxed, communal feel. We walked in and immediately got started rolling fleece blankets. Next, we joined some girl scouts putting together packs of pencils and pens. My daughter was very excited to use the pencil sharpener.

But the best part for her was getting to put together a backpack for a young girl. She got to hand-select everything that went inside, including a stuffie, a journal, toiletries, and more items. She wrote her name on the finishing touch — a postcard that read “Prepared by Mia.”

After our time there ended, she was eager to do more and wanted to learn more about the kids who need parents and homes, let alone toiletries.  I couldn’t have asked for a better introduction to volunteering.

Comfort Cases is located at 15825 Shady Grove Road #60, Rockville, MD 20850. Click here for information on volunteering and the available time slots. For more DC area volunteering opportunities where kids can help out too, check out this KFDC post.

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