One of the things we all want for our children is to be happy and safe. What I also want for my boys is to have an understanding of others. That sometimes people are different to us and that is okay. But also that people may be the same as us, they just live in a different place. I think we all need to stop and take a step back sometimes: Count our blessings, and count them again. We are so fortunate here in the UK to have access to a good education, medical care, housing and so on. Although even here not everyone is equal, with 130,000 children in the UK every year leaving primary school not reading as well as they should. This is why Save the Children launched the Read on Get on Campaign.
Save the Children is an international non-governmental organization that promotes children’s rights and campaigns for long-term change to improve children’s lives. They provide lifesaving supplies (including food and healthcare needed to thrive) and emotional support to protect the world’s most vulnerable children who are caught up in disasters like floods, famine,war, extreme poverty and to protect them from exploitation. They help families to help themselves.
I was interested to hear about Save the Children Club – a great new membership scheme that would help my children to understand the lives of other children who are just like them but from different places around the world. I actually hoped that also they would begin to appreciate how lucky they are too. The Save the Children Club is aimed at children ages 6-11 years old. Costing only £7.50 a month which goes to help vulnerable children. Three times a year child will be sent their own activity pack (and they can even have it addressed to themselves!) which will contain informative activities that foster creativity and empathy.
Helping children develop a sense of self in the world. Who they are, where they belong, how are they the same, how are they different. That it is okay for them to be different. This will be empowering as well as giving them a very humanistic view of things. Of course it will also take into account geography and they will be given a map and stickers where they can place where people are. Each pack will focus on a child. There will be fun activities to do associated with their life. It will be packed with facts and also fun games. With also access to a website packed with quizzes, videos and games. Not forgetting a club badge.
Save the Children invited us to London to see what we thought of the first pack. Focusing on Gerald a 9 year old boy in the Philippines who it is briefly touched on that his home was destroyed by a typhoon and that Save the Children got him a new one. The pack mainly focuses on what the Philippines is like how things are the same and how they are different to the UK (such as the time difference). The games and activities are a mix of ones that children can do by themselves and others that they require others.
We also heard about the emergency work done by Save the Children. It really brought home how young they are and how they are just children. Sometimes they are experiencing such horrific things and they just need some safe space. That the smallest of things can normalise their lives a little bit. Like some bubbles, a balloon.
I loved how happy the children at the event were to play with plastic bottles just like the children in the Philippines and my son certainly learnt a lot more than he knew before (he’s 7).
It is a great way of helping support the work of Save the Children for the most vulnerable of children whilst still benefiting the receiver of the pack. If your child is then wanting to help further you may be interested to get involved with Den Day (29 May-6 June).
I was invited to London to review The Save the Children Club with my son. All words and opinions are my own.