Written by Amy Andrews
Maia Campbell is one inspirational 14-year old. She saw her parents helping out and giving back to the community and became curious about how she and her siblings could get involved too. She and her parents quickly realized that many non-profits have age limits and require volunteers to be at least 16.
So, what did she do? She founded Kidz That Care, an organization to identify ways that kids can help and volunteer. “We decided on a name and before you knew it, we had an organization and slowly, but surely started getting some attention,” said Maia.
Maia is passionate about the fact that age and experience should not keep kids from getting involved. “The main reason I love doing this is that I like knowing that I’m making a difference, helping people and bringing smiles to other people’s faces,” she shared. “That fills my heart with joy and I think other people will enjoy it too. I hope more people will see what we are doing and be inspired to get involved.”
Due to COVID-19, Kidz That Care quickly adjusted to lead and organize remote/virtual and social distanced volunteer opportunities in support of those most affected by the pandemic such as food pantries, shelters and health organizations. Maia explained, “we decided to do remote plans where kids do projects at home or outside, to stay safe and help out.” Kidz That Care researches volunteer opportunities that are kid and teen-friendly all across Charlotte. They conduct online research on local organizations serving community needs, and then follow-up with a call to the volunteer coordinator to explore opportunities to help and to see if there is a good fit.
Recently, Kidz That Care did a Valentine’s Day project, where kids created cards for retirement home residents. They held a zoom call to coordinate and then created the cards and delivered them. Maia emphasized, “We are up for any type of projects. This project showed creativity and brought a lot of smiles.”
Kids looking to get involved can follow Kidz That Care on Instagram and Facebook to view their events calendar and see if there is a service project that interests them. This past year alone they were able to do projects including food drives for local food pantries, collecting PPE equipment for healthcare workers, writing letters to healthcare frontline workers, putting together hygiene kits and snack packs for underserved students and repairing books and making reading buddy materials.
Kidz That Care empowers kids and teens to be not only volunteers, but also to grow into actively engaged community leaders by encouraging them to lead initiatives and events in support of local social issues they care about the most, whether it's anti-bullying, helping the homeless, education, health, animal cruelty, or any other area they are passionate about making a difference in.
Since they started in the summer of 2018, Kidz That Care has partnered with over 30 Charlotte organizations in need of volunteers and has completed hundreds of hours of community service work.
For more information about Kidz That Care, you can visit their website. Let’s help spread the word that there are many great opportunities for kids to get involved on a regular basis in Charlotte and give back!