Live far from your grandchildren?

Missing those precious hugs and delightful baby gurgles?

Wishing to snuggle?

Feeling the urge to read a book to little ones?

May I suggest that you volunteer somewhere? Get involved in the lives of the children who are nearby…in between visits with your very own ‘grands.’

Does your church have a nursery? I bet they could use some extra hands!!

Do you live near a school? I bet teachers would love to have someone assist them — helping with art projects, reading books, hanging out on Field Day. What an encouragement to teachers and students alike!

Okmatdet collageDo you live near a hospital? Have you considered volunteering to hold babies or to read books or even to play picture BINGO?

Here in Ukraine, when a child is hospitalized a parent stays with the child and takes care of all non-medical needs. This includes bathing, playing outside, reading, providing extra food and juice…anything you can think of. Orphans don’t have the luxury of someone with them, so taking some time to hug and give extra attention to these children is priceless.

One place I volunteer is in the HIV/AIDS unit at Oxmatdet — the national children’s hospital here in Kyiv. Some children are alone; many have a caregiver, often the mom. Our small team is able to break up a monotonous week by playing bingo (stickers to the winners!), providing materials for handcrafts, singing, drawing with sidewalk chalk. Whatever. AND I am always more than happy to hold someone’s little one — giving the mom a much-needed break and giving me a child to snuggle. Win-win!!

While no one can ever replace my own grandchildren, what a joy to brighten the lives of others! I get my ‘fix’ and they get one-on-one attention.

I encourage you to find some children to love on while you are far from your own.

You will be blessed beyond measure.

I promise.

Currently there are "6 comments" on this Article:

  1. Joyce says:

    This is a beautiful ministry! And, from my personal experience with the way God works, he is arranging special kindnesses to bestow upon your own grandchildren. He will NOT be outdone in generosity!

    • Marianna Peipon says:

      Yes, it is true that one cannot outgive God! This ministry blesses me much more than I bless the children and their caregivers, I’m sure. It’s pretty amazing to think that God is arranging special kindnesses to bestow upon my own grandchildren as I serve Him on this side of the Pond. Makes me smile. Thanks.

  2. What a wonderful way to give back Marianna! I know there are many many grandparents living far from their grandchildren and many children craving love and attention.

    I have only come across three picture books showing older adults volunteering–isn’t that crazy? I’m sure there are millions doing so.

    • Marianna Peipon says:

      It’s hard to believe that you’ve only come across three picture books showing older adults volunteering — yes, it IS crazy!! Any authors out there looking for some good subject matter??!!

      I am so excited to have stumbled across your site today…I am a bookaholic and look forward to your reviews as I build my personal grandchildren’s library!!

  3. Grandma Kc says:

    I found a great way to volunteer — I joined the PTA at my granddaughter’s elementary school. I get lots of extra hugs from her and from her friends plus I get to hang out with some really cool younger moms!

    • Marianna says:

      Super idea, Grandma Kc! I love whenever different generations can work together for the common good. (Slightly jealous of how much time you get with her, but so encouraged that you’re so committed to nabbing time whenever you can.)

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