As we get closer to Thanksgiving, charity and giving to others is particuarly top of mind, which is why I was just so happy to discover several subscription boxes for kids that teach those very values.
Many of us are talking to our kids about things to be thankful for, as we make donations to food pantries, add some extra Toys for Tots, items to our shopping bags, and think about special DIY gifts to express gratitude to teachers, coaches, and other instructors and guides in our kids’ lives..
So I love that we can keep these values top-of-mind year round, thanks to these three unique subscription boxes for kids, that really drive the message home.
Your kids get the excitement of receiving a new package throughout the year, plus with the the fun of creating or learning about something new. But on top of that, they’ll gain understanding about larger, important issues and what they can do to impact their communities or the greater world.
That, as they say, is priceless.
Related: The best subscription gifts for kids this year: 40+ ideas for every age, and every interest
Alltruists subscription box for kids
Photo: The Cinnamon Mom via Instagram
Launched this past June, the cleverly named Alltruists subscription box for kids (catch the pun?) delivers monthly volunteer project kits designed in collaboration with select nonprofit partners.
Designed for kids ages 4-11, Alltruists boxes are created with a strong educational component so that kids learn more about key issues including homelessness, hunger, recycling, refugees, and the plight of bees — all in an engaging way that is age-appropriate and impactful, but won’t leave them with existential dread.
Boxes include five mini books, related enclosed activity projects, and the encouragement to research additional ways they can help to extend their own commitment to key issues. A QR code leads to a video about that particular cause, and allows kids to direct a $5 donation to the organization.
Related: Mighty Kind: A fun, compassionate, anti-racism, pro-kindness magazine for today’s kids
I love that Alltruists was founded by a mom of four who knows a thing or two about doing good in the world: Jessica Jackley was one of the founders of microloan company and CMP favorite Kiva. With her understanding of the bigger issues around us, Jessica has made sure Alltruists boxes are multi-faceted and work to teach kids empathy for issues that might seem very far away from their day-to-day lives.
I also like that the boxes themselves are as eco-friendly as possible since that’s another big issue kids today particularly care about (as should we all); the contents are all recyclable, biodegradable, plastic-free, and low-or-no waste.
Alltruists’ December box supports charity: water, and they can expect future boxes to include projects like doing playground or park clean-up, making bird feeders for migratory birds, and upcycling or recycling items within one’s home.
This one will come in handy after Christmas!
(Options include buying one-off boxes for $55 if there is a cause that is near and dear to your heart, or purchasing a subscription for 3, 6, or 12 months. The cost to get kids to start thinking about how they can help others in this world? Priceless.)
Little Loving Hands subscription box for kids
I am so excited to see that Little Loving Hands is back after a short break (I called them one of my favorite subscription boxes of 2015). They’re new management, but with the original mission still intact: Sending bimonthly craft boxes all beautifully assembled with everything your elementary-age child needs to create a project with the mission of spreading kindness.
With boxes centered on causes like kindness to people without housing, kindness to our veterans, or kindness to shelter dogs, there is a wide variety of themes, all explained in an age-appropriate way for young children.
Previous boxes have included braiding a dog toy for a shelter animal (awwwwww), making a warm knit scarf for a homeless shelter resident, or above, packing together a seed ball for the earth, that can be planted in your garden or neighborhood. Your finished craft is mailed back to Little Loving Hands for distribution to their partner non-profit or kept locally to be used at home.
Related: 12 acts of kindness you can do with your kids over the holiday break, to make the season about more than presents.
I love the sample box I tried so much six years ago, that I purchased a subscription box series for my son, and he is not normally a crafter. Interestingly, he loved doing crafts with a “purpose” and was totally engaged because of it.
As I wrote back in 2015, “Kids who might normally rush through a project may also spend more time and care on something that will get into the hands of someone at an organization.”
(Individual boxes are available for $35 while supplies last, or cost $25/bimonthly for a one-year, 6-box subscription)
For Purpose Kids subscription box for kids
I used to love snuggling up with my kids and reading them stories that helped them learn about all the people in the big world around us. And though they are now huge teens and not as apt to sit on my lap anymore, your little ones may be perfect for the For Purpose Kids’ book club subscription.
Related: Why it’s important for kids to read diverse books, with author Meena Harris
What makes The book club subscription from For Purpose Kids particularly special is that each carefully selected title covers topics that make my progressive heart sing — like diversity & inclusion, anti-racism, gender equality, access to education, LGBTQ+ communities, and climate change. Geared toward kids ages 3-8, each mailing includes both the book, and DIY activity suggestions to go along with the story.
Recent book selections include favorites we’ve covered here like Malala’s Magic Pencil and We are Water Protectors; in other words, books that will help kids learn empathy for others and concern about the world in which we all inhabit.
With each subscription, a donation is also made to Cool & Dope, a terrific organization led by young Cavanaugh Bell that’s been helping people in need during the pandemic.
($74.95 for a six-month bimonthly subscription)