A BIG Thank You to 3TV for coming out and covering our Thanksgiving Food Bag Event!
Kids learning to give back to the community
Click Here To View Video by Ryan O’Donnell
A group of kids are doing something really special. They’re putting together Thanksgiving meals for other kids who are less fortunate.
“It’s just something we do, it’s part of who we are and hopefully it’ll be a lifelong passion of theirs that they continue and pass on to their kids,” Skar said.
Families Giving Back was recently featured in Raising Arizona Kids magazine:
FAMILIES GIVING BACK
HELPS CHILDREN HELP OTHERS
By Maggie Zehring | November 1, 2013
Lisa Geyser (left) and Alex Sklar of Familes Giving Back. Photo by Daniel Friedman.
Arizona families can find kid-friendly, family-focused volunteer events thanks to local non-profit Families Giving Back (FGB).
Co-founders Alex Sklar and Lisa Geyser of Phoenix began FGB so they could include their growing families in their own volunteer efforts. Since the organization began in April 2012, it has collaborated with 14 area nonprofits to organize 25 events ranging from reading to kids to preparing food in a soup kitchen in the Phoenix metropolitan area.
FGB volunteers sorted through thousands of donated books for
Homeward Bound at a September event in Phoenix. Photo by Daniel Friedman.
Sklar and Geyser met seven years ago as young mothers at North Central Parenting Group in Phoenix, soon after giving birth to sons. Since then, each has had another son; the four boys—two age 7, and a 4- and 5-year-old—consider themselves brothers. tried to take the boys with them to volunteer events but continually were turned away. “We were hearing ‘no’ a lot,” says Sklar.
Families Giving Back was recently featured in the Jewish News
Teaching our children about the value of giving
Posted: Wednesday, October 16, 2013 10:00 am
Teaching our children about the value of giving and about the impact our giving has on others is best demonstrated by experiences our children can take part in. Volunteering allows us to put our Jewish values into action and creates a powerful learning opportunity.
Older children have plenty of volunteer choices available to them and there are many Jewish organizations in the Valley that promote tikkun olam (repairing the world) experiences – The Friendship Circle, B’nai Tzedek, local youth groups and congregations to name a few.
In the past, families with younger children may have struggled to find mitzvah opportunities their families could participate in. Enter Alex Sklar and Lisa Geyser, founders of Families Giving Back. These women created FGB because they were looking for volunteer experiences their families could participate in but were not able to find a lot out there to accommodate young children. After speaking with many other families, they realized the interest was there but most parents did not have the time or the knowledge to seek out these opportunities.
Families Giving Back works with nonprofit organizations to develop volunteer events that work for families with children of all ages. They host two to three events per month and also promote other family-friendly volunteer opportunities from other nonprofits.
According to Alex and Lisa, most of the events are short but children observe firsthand how a small amount of time can make a huge difference in someone’s life. Through FGB events, young children are exposed to the “real world” and develop a compassion for others who are less fortunate.
Families Giving Back has a volunteer experience coming up that is perfect for Family Fun Page families. On Oct. 20, FGB will be working with Keep Phoenix Beautiful at PHX Renews Project Site – part of Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton’s vacant lot initiative. Volunteers will be helping to clean and beautify the park area. To learn more or to find out about other volunteer opportunities, visit www.familiesgivingback.org/site/event-calendar.
Here is an article from Rabbi Lawrence Troster to help you get your family ready for a mitzvah experience of caring for the earth: http://bit.ly/1e8u2ri
Kol H’Kvod to all our Family Fun Page families who spend family time volunteering!
Featured on Raising Arizona Kids Magazine Website 8/10/13
FAMILY VOLUNTEERING AND THE ART OF GIVING BACK
Some Valley families got out of bed just a little bit earlier than usual this morning to pack and prepare food for United Way’s WeekEND Hunger Backpack Program.
They were helping through the family-friendly volunteering program Families Giving Back(FGB).
Valley moms Alex Sklar and Lisa Geyser started FGB in April 2012 because they were having trouble finding volunteer projects they could do with their own young children.
Since then, Sklar and Geyser have helped organize 25 events in the community, alongside 14 Valley nonprofits.
“If you teach them at a super young age, it instills that idea in their soul,” explains Karen Conway, a member of the FGB board.
The organization hosts at least two activities a month. During the slower summer months, FGB promotes in-home activities like collecting pop tabs or gathering clothes for donation.
September’s events include helping assemble welcome bags for Ronald McDonald families and putting together book donations for Homeward Bound’s “Reading With Friends.”
“About a year ago, two Valley moms with a desire to expose their young children to volunteering discovered that it wasn’t as easy as it sounded.
“We were both looking for volunteer opportunities that we could do as a family together,” says Alex Sklar. “We both kept running into roadblocks because our boys are young and many of the nonprofits have age restrictions.”
So Sklar and Lisa Geyser, whose two young sons are the same ages — 4 and 6 — as Sklar’s sons and attend the same schools — Congregation Beth Israel’s Chanen Preschool and Pardes Jewish Day School — decided to launch Families Giving Back.”
Ellery Beauchman, left, and Adrian Woodnick, both 4, wrap boxes of matzah as part of a mitzvah project at Congregation Beth Israel’s Chanen Preschool. The school partnered with Families Giving Back, a new organization that offers volunteer opportunities for families. The boxes of matzah were donated to families in need through the community Passover food drive coordinated by the Bureau of Jewish Education and Jewish Family & Children’s Service.