How to create more opportunities for your child to succeed, even when you lack financial resources

Since the moment your child was born, you had high hopes for what their future would entail. Many want more for their child...more than maybe what their parents were able to provide. Despite any circumstances that may appear as lack, your love of your child will motivate you to find a way to provide the best opportunities and future possible. Sometimes a sea of opportunity can be right under your nose, if you’re willing to look!

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Remember, Google is your friend

Depending on how old you are, you may remember in the “olden times” when you had to look things up in the Encyclopedia Britannica, dictionary hard copy (not!), and learn the Dewey Decimal System to complete school papers. But now, we have this amazing tool...GOOGLE! Anything you or your child wants to know can be found in a matter of minutes. Even seconds! Google is a low cost way to help your child succeed by showing them the plethora of knowledge out in the world at their disposal. You can learn anything! If your child wants to learn about another country, Wikipedia is an option. If your child wants to learn how to create a robot for a science project, you can learn by watching a few YouTube videos. You can even take FREE classes on HUNDREDS of subjects by logging into with your library card. There are literally thousands of opportunities to learn and get ahead by using all of the resources available to you through the internet. It’s up to you to decide how you’ll use it.

Your local public library

Speaking of the library...some people think of the library as an old place with old smelly books. But you have to give credit where credit is due! Most public libraries around the country offer enrichment programming, guest speakers, free internet use, tutors to help with homework, and digital resources to learn a new language among other things. And did I mention all of this is FREE to you and your family?

Seek out opportunities for free or low cost educational/enrichment programming through local organizations, colleges, and non-profits

Many non-profits and programs are started with the intent to help people of little financial resources in education, learning new skills, and overall creating a better life path for themselves. And I mean quality programs! Search online or through the websites of your local college for topics that interest your child to see if there are any low cost programs enrolling new students. For instance, a google search using the phrase “free enrichment programs in Atlanta” led me to the following:

Help your child find a mentor

As a parent, you serve as the 1st role model in your child’s life. So you have the ability to help form your child’s perspective of the world. But it never hurts to have other positive role models. With a mentor, your child can develop an even more well-rounded view on life, as well as support academically, socially, and personally. Sometimes once a certain level of trust is obtained, the relationship built between a child and mentor can further enhance the child-parent relationship and child-teacher relationship by providing an additional outlet and support system.

Being a present parent

Studies show that parents who are PRESENT in their child’s life greatly enhance the child’s development and well-being. Children with parents who are not present may experience attachment issues, trust issues, low self-esteem, lack of identity, and can easily be influenced by the wrong crowd. Of course, every child is different and may not experience these consequences. But who wants to test it with their child?? No one. Understanding many parents work and have obligations outside the home, it is understandable that you cannot be with your child 24/7. However the time you are present is enjoyable and edifying for the entire family when you are present without being distracted.

Remember, time is your greatest asset...use it wisely

Nowadays we all seem pressed for time. Between work, raising a family, a social obligations, it may appear like you have no time. But your child’s well-being and future depend on you prioritizing. Activities such as checking homework, ensuring your child has a healthy well-balanced meal, reading, or taking time to find your child the resources he/she needs to succeed all matter! A lot of times, parents may have the money to provide but not the time. Or a parent will have the time, but not the money. As frustrating as either situation can be, see the positives in both. If you are the latter and financial resources are not in abundance, please realize your time and how you spend it can be as good as gold. You have time to find the resources your child can use to get ahead. Use your time wisely.

Teach your child to take ownership over his/her own life experience

In schools, you’ll see many students who’s parents cater to their every need-always on top of the student’s schedule, running them to various practices/rehearsals, and not even trusting them to keep up with their own house keys. But when that child turns 18 and should be heading off to college to begin life as an adult, the child is ill-prepared. They’ve never had a responsilbility. They’re unable to manage their own money. And meals consistent of microwave dinners or fast food because they’ve never had to fend for themselves. From a young age, you can begin teaching a child to be independent. You can teach them how to speak up for themselves by encouraging them to speak on their own behalf instead of having mom speak for them. You can encourage them to be money-conscious by opening a student checking account where they can store their allowance. There are many ways to teach a child to take ownership while watching under a loving parent’s eye. A child who is responsible and takes ownership is poised to seek and seize opportunities.

What do you think of these ideas and resources? Do you plan to use any? Let us know by joining the conversation on our Facebook page. We’d also love what other ideas you’ve had or tested to make your child a success.

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-Solid Foundation Christian Academy Staff