The future changemakers of Australia

The organisation encouraging empathy & inspiring kids to get involved in social change, Kids in Philanthropy.

5 teens standing together, smiling.

Philanthropy seems like a huge concept to most. Sometimes it even conjures images of rich, distant billionaires donating cash hand over fist to huge charities. While that is one form of philanthropy that certainly exists. There’s a change on the horizon; the new wave of philanthropy empowered by kids of all ages - Kids in Philanthropy.

Kids in Philanthropy (KiP) is an Australian organisation that brings empathy, powerful change and hands-on-help to our communities. Encouraging kids and their families to be the future change-makers of Australia.

With simple goals like helping the local community or disadvantaged youths, and a broader vision of making the world a better place. KiP aims to bring kids to the forefront of charity and philanthropy by making the culture of giving normal. In fact, wealth has nothing to do with philanthropy with KiP. The children and families involved learn about the true meaning. A love for humanity and strategic giving for the greater of mankind.

How good does that sound? Future changemakers, social awareness and empathy for others? All traits most parents would love to see in their kids, we’re sure.

Luckily for us, KiP Board of Directors member, Romy Katz, shares her experience of working with Kids in Philanthropy. She tells us a little bit more about this wonderful organisation.

Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with us today. Can you tell us the core values of Kids in Philanthropy (KiP)?

KiP’s core values are all about collaborating to grow empathy, inspire change and do more. We work with over 20 different charities and not-for-profits to help our friends in need - we really believe collaboration is the essence to creating change.

What do you love about working with Kids in Philanthropy?

Working with KiP means doing something different every day. Sometimes it’s in schools running workshops, in a kitchen cooking meals for people in need, giving a lecture, facilitating 200 people at a volunteer session, posting social media or crunching numbers in the office with my best friend and colleague Sarah.

But the best part are the amazing kids we meet daily, who just blow us away with their sense of empathy, justice and their philanthropic drive.

“KiP works because kids get to touch and feel the issue first hand, be a part of the solution. They leave us feeling inspired to do more.”

What kind of activities do kids in KiP get involved in?

KiP runs all types of activities that have the same purpose, that is to empower the next generation of changemakers. We really want to see the kids of Australia standing up and making a difference to help our friends who are doing it tough. That can be through volunteering, through clothing and sporting goods drives and sorting activities, through school workshops or cooking sessions. We even have KiP teens volunteering for KiP to help us run our sessions.

Why do you think KiP works as a way to get kids involved in helping their communities?

KiP works, because the kids involved not only learn about the issues, but they get to touch and feel the issue first hand and be a part of the solution. We never leave our KiP kids with a feeling of hopelessness or that these issues are too big for them to help. They leave us feeling inspired to do more.

Kids in Philanthropy (KiP)

I’m sure you see a positive impact in the communities that KiP helps – does any instance stand out to you? A time when the impact was really memorable?

My most memorable moment was when we ran a session at PEGS school, it was a huge workshop with all the boys who ended the session with a hand written note of hope to those living on the streets. It wasn’t until a month or two later I was chatting to a young person living rough who told me she had taken a note from Youth Projects (that the PEGS Boys had written) and kept it with her whilst squatting in the CBD.

She told me that every day she read that note and felt like she had a community supporting her, it gave her all the strength she needed to get up every day and try to change her life. Fast forward a few months and she is working full time, living with her partner in an apartment… it was then that I realised every little bit counts, and the work we do is imperative to every person we touch.

“We are teaching the kids of Australia to care and to be philanthropic in every way, every day, for the rest of their lives. To us they are the changemakers we want leading our country in the future.”

What about the kids in KiP, what kind of attitude do they have after being involved in some of your activities?

To watch the growth and change in kids that come to us after just one session is incredible. Some kids arrive with preconceived ideas about people and the support they require, after a session they are far more open minded, empathetic and they feel proud of what they have achieved, they have an improved sense of wellbeing.

It only takes a short time of volunteering to make a significant impact that you can see in both your own life and that of someone else.

Kids in Philanthropy (KiP)

It’s amazing to hear that these Aussie kids are future changemakers – we agree! What does that term mean to you?

A changemaker is someone who will create positive social change in their community.

At KiP we believe that if you teach someone to do something daily from a young age (like brushing your teeth), they will embed this habit as a part of their life, forever. We are teaching the kids of Australia to care and to be philanthropic in every way, every day, for the rest of their lives. To us they are the changemakers we want leading our country in the future.

What kind of things can parents do at home to encourage the KiP values in their own kids? Growing empathy, inspiring change and doing more?

Every parent can do this by teaching their kids about Philanthropy. Philanthropy, meaning simply ‘Love of Humanity’ is about giving of your Time, Talent and Treasure.

Time: In the literal sense, make time for others, show your children that giving up some of your time on the weekend to do something for someone else is an important value.

Talent: Use your skills for good, cook for someone who is sick or unable, take a walk with a grandparent, knit a scarf for your local friends living rough.

Treasure: Teach your children that their old clothes, books, shoes and toys can be a treasure to someone else with nothing. Teach them that when they earn money, birthdays, Christmas or pocket money there are 3 boxes you can put it in. Spending, Savings and Donation, even if only 10 cents goes in the jar it’s more than someone with nothing has. Over time that can become $1, $10, $100; the impact you can make on others is huge.

Of course talk to your kids about just being kind to one another. Every day gives us an opportunity to positively affect someone else's life, so why not have a go.

Kids in Philanthropy (KiP)

The true meaning of philanthropy; loving humanity, giving with empathy and forming a sense of justice.

Leaving behind a dramatically positive impact on everyone involved, this type of philanthropy is all about making the culture of giving normal. KiP is changing the face of Australian philanthropy through the next generation and raising a team of changemakers who will keep this empathy for the rest of their lives.

We can’t wait to see what’s next.

Get involved

KiP currently operate in Victoria but expansion is on the horizon (NSW and QLD, keep an eye out).

They love welcoming new families! Follow them on Instagram and Facebook or sign up to their newsletter at www.kip.org.au.

Their flagship event Hangout for the Homeless is on June 1st; simply volunteering for two hours can leave a huge impact on homeless youths this winter and we think it’s a great way to get involved!

For more inspiring stories, read how about the wonderful, Kherrington Briggs Volunteers at 'Feed My Starving Children' - Tween Goals!

Charmaine Chung
Charmaine Chung

Charmaine Chung is one half of the lady boss team behind Somewhere Between, a resource for super mamas everywhere raising kids in the feisty pre-teen and early teen years. Beginning her career in retail fashion, before moving onto the music industry, working for major record labels, Charmaine eventually moved from Sydney to Laos to follow her dreams of starting a family. Four kids and 14 years later, she’s back in Canberra where motherhood has won her over, leading her to develop Somewhere Between - for mums just like her - raising kids who are navigating that space between their childhood and teenage years.

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