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1860 - Colonel Thomas F. Mitchell arrives in Soledad Canyon [story]


The Good Long Road | Commentary by Jennifer Fischer
| Saturday, Jun 7, 2014

JenniferFischerAs we all know, the Santa Clarita Valley is very family-friendly, with special events happening every weekend. It’s also an area with a thriving nonprofit community – which means many fundraising events.

Although I support many causes, as a parent on a tight budget and with two young children, it can be hard to attend fundraising events, but one of our favorite fundraising events is just around the corner: Touch-A-Truck on June 14. It’s a fundraiser for the Santa Clarita Valley Senior Center. My boys loved it last year, and we’re looking forward to attending this year.

Children get to meet emergency service workers and can climb aboard fire trucks, city buses, garbage trucks, moving trucks and much more. It’s hands-on, and the cost to attend is just $5, with free admission for fathers. Held at Central Park, this is a great Father’s Day weekend activity. Plus, I love that it supports the Senior Center.

For me, not only is this event a fun outing, but it is also allows me to talk with my son about what emergency service workers do and about the importance of other jobs that make our community work: water works, garbage disposal, etc. The event also underscores for me the value of teaching my children to give back and help others.

We focus on giving back and taking care of our community quite a lot. My 2-year-old in particular is a stickler about litter. He hates seeing trash on the streets and cannot understand why people don’t just throw it away (me, neither).

truckMy 4-year-old enjoys doing grocery store scavenger hunts to get items to donate to the food pantry, and one of our favorite family volunteer opportunities was visiting a veterans hospital-senior center on Sepulveda. It can be a challenge to find service or volunteer opportunities when you have young children, but visiting an elderly friend or a nursing home, veterans center or similar place can be a perfect fit.

Our visit truly brightened the day we met the veterans, and the boys had fun, too, playing giant checkers and other games and just interacting with their new friends.

Often with toddlers and preschoolers, focus areas include ABCs, numbers, colors and shapes. But for me, teaching empathy and a love for helping others is equally important.

I want to make sure I prioritize character building. I want them to not only be smart, well-balanced and happy, but also giving, loving, caring and aware of the needs of those around them.

Lately, I feel like we need much, much more of that. I’ll continue to prioritize it, and I have been inspired by the many parents and educators I know who are focusing on this, too. This is the education revolution I want to see.

 

Jennifer Fischer is co-founder of the SCV Film Festival, a mom of two, an independent filmmaker and owner of Think Ten Media Group, whose Generation Arts division offers programs for SCV youth. She writes about her parenting journey on her blog, The Good Long Road. Her commentary is published Saturdays on SCVNews.com.

 

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  1. Just don’t get pulled over by the police here you will get shot for not wearing your seatbelt.

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