Learning Young the Gift of Helping Others

The Moret girls, Zoe, Mia and Sophie, are given a choice when they turn 5: Have a birthday party of their choice with presents from their friends or have the same party but forgo the presents.

This might seem like an exercise in futility for any parent. But so far, the two sisters older than 5 have both opted for no presents. They have asked instead for things that a local charity needs.

For Zoe, now 8, her fifth birthday was a natural melding of her interests. “I love princesses and I wanted to do something to help animals,” she said.

The result was a princess-themed party to benefit a local animal shelter. Guests brought what the shelter needed, from biscuits to bleach and copying paper.

“We got to drop off the things at the front desk,” Zoe said. “And then we got to go and look at the animals. We’re basically at the point where we’re going to get a new dog.”

She added, “My sisters do it as well. Sophie is still getting presents. But Mia is doing it and one year she wanted to do this thing with dolphins.”

The Moret sisters are part of a small but growing group of children and teenagers who are engaging in charitable giving and…

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