This past Tuesday, most of us were in shock (and despair) as it became clear that Donald Trump would be our next President.
Tuesday was our time to stay up all night in shock, crying, wishing the whole thing was a nightmare we could wake up from. Wednesday was our time to mourn—for our children, for our Muslim brothers and sisters, our Latino friends, the LGBTQ community, and all people of color or difference who woke up feeling vulnerable, targeted, and terrorized. Thursday was the day we realized while we may be angry and sad about not getting our President, we could still fight for the issues (the people!) who are important to us.
And today? Today is a new day. Today is the day we can transform that vulnerability and fear into full on rage, the kind that drives us to do good, to find ways to connect with our shattered and heartbroken communities, and get shit done. We can’t afford to wait four years for this monstrosity to go away.
We are mothers. We are fathers. We are humans who promote acceptance, love, and kindness above all else. And we need to act now, for our kids, and for the next generation of kids to come.
So we’ve compiled some ideas of real things you can do right now to make the world a more compassionate and accepting place. There are ways to donate, to volunteer, and simple acts of kindness you can practice with your kids in tow.
10 Family-Centered Organizations to Volunteer With or Donate To
1. The American Civil Liberties Union vows to protect our constitutional right and liberties, including racial equality and reproductive freedoms. Click here to donate.
2. The Anti-Defamation League’s purpose is to “fight anti-Semitism worldwide,” as well as “combat extremism and terrorism.” They also aim to address bullying of all kinds, including cyberbullying. Click here to donate, and here to join your regional chapter.
3. The Boys and Girls Club of America works to provide a safe haven for kids when they aren’t in school (afterschool and summer vacation, for example). Click here for more information on how to give.
4. Camp Aranu’tiq is a summer camp and safe spot for LBGTQ kids who feel that they might not fit in anywhere else. Click here to donate.
8. Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) offers programs for victims of sexual abuse, and operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline (800-656-HOPE). Click here to donate, and here to volunteer for the hotline.
10. The Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights’ goal is to protect the rights of children who immigrate to the United States unaccompanied. Click here to donate, and here to volunteer as a Child Advocate.
10 Simple Acts of Kindness To Do With Your Kids
1. Have a garage sale for a local women’s abuse shelter. Make sure to take your kids along when you donate the proceeds.
2. Take flowers and handwritten notes to mosques, synagogues, and other places of worship where marginalized people congregate. Show them that you are there, you are listening, and you care.
3. Donate toiletries, feminine hygiene products, gift cards, diapers, and food to domestic abuse shelters and homeless shelters.
4. Pay for another’s family’s meal—just foot the bill without even asking. Pay it forward to the person behind you at the drive-through.
5. Volunteer at your local soup kitchen, and not just during the holiday season.
6. If there is a gay, lesbian, bisexual, or trans kid who is out at your child’s school, encourage your child to be a good listener, and beacon of support. Reaching out, even when an LGBTQ child doesn’t ask for help, can make a world of difference in terms of that child feeling safe.
7. Take your kids on the many protests, marches, and demonstrations that are bound to pop up over the next few years. Show them that there are other likeminded people who care, and that caring doesn’t just mean talking the talk, but showing up and doing the work.
8. Have your kids write letters to their local and national elected officials. Sometimes words straight out of the mouths of babes means more than anything else.
9. Give out hugs to anyone who needs them. Smile. Hold open doors. Each small gesture counts and matters.
10. Offer kind words to anyone who is struggling. Don’t even ask. If you see the pain on their face, ask them how they are. And listen. Listen, listen, listen. Validate. We all need to be heard right now.We can’t reverse our disappointment, but we can use it to fuel us. Let’s make sure those that will be most affected by a Trump presidency (minorities, POC, Muslim Americans, sexual assault survivors, etc.) know that we stand with them in solidarity and love.