Halloween is a fun time for children in this country, lots of sweets, parties and a little mild spooky fun. My kids love dressing up, carving a pumpkin and as far as I am concerned, it is a harmless festival. In fact, psychologists have suggested that indulging in fantasy scares, like reading a spooky fairytale or ghost story, help children work through anxieties they are too young to articulate or rationalise.
I am not, however, very keen on the Trick or Treat aspect of doorstepping your neighbours, and if you are not comfortable with that, or more generally with the emphasis on ghouls and ghosties around Halloween, finding a way of allowing your children to join in without an outright ban is always problematic.
This year, put an alternative spin on the festival. World Vision UK are asking that on 31st October, we remember the children around the world who really do live in fear. They have come up with the utterly adorable idea of placing a heart pumpkin on your doorstep. On a dark, dark night, you can show the world you care with your pumpkin burning bright, a little lantern of love and hope for universal childhood.
You can read more about the Night of Hope on the Worldvision website. They have carving guides, pumpkin recipes and a very sad case study about a little girl in Uganda who was ultimately helped by World Vision to escape a forced marriage aged 15.
Please do consider signing up, you might even win the prize of a cookery class with Lesley Waters, which you are entered into when you do. Bonus!
|Image courtesy of World Vision UK|