As children enter their tweens and especially in the teenage years, many are searching for ways to feel needed and useful. Most are apprehensive about being around elderly adults but there are so many ways young adults can serve the mature around them.
One of my favorite group project ideas actually was sparked when a local church organized an event for the senior citizens in our area.
Full Service Car Wash
Since they live on a fixed income, many senior adults need assistance with basic car maintenance. Why not search for an empty parking lot with access to water, like at a church, and set up a free car wash with additional services such as oil change and fluid check. Older teens could be trained to do these basic auto maintenance items and while they are checking under the hood, younger teens and tweens can be cleaning out trash and/or vacuuming the interior.
Once the inner details are complete, they car would be nudged forward in the line to the car wash area where the car is cleaned and the the tires can be checked for air pressure.
As your customers wait, your preteens could also work a rest area where the elderly adults could be served refreshments as they wait. This age group can really get excited about pretending to be waiters.
This is not an idea that children could tackle by themselves and adult supervision and training would certainly be necessary. You would also need to seek out donations for oil, wiper fluid, and cleaning supplies.
While in my mind this would work well for a church group, I can easily see how a homeschool co-op, civics club, Boy Scout troop, or middle school could organize and offer the full service car wash to the senior adults in their area.
Have you ever participated a car wash or auto maintenance service project? What tips can you offer those who might be planning an event such as this? Thanks for leaving your thoughts in the comments!
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