5 Youth Creating Extraordinary Social Change

5 Youth Creating Extraordinary Social Change

There’s a fairly common misconception that young people aren’t able to make a difference in the world.

For a young person looking to help their community, this idea can be incredibly stifling. They might come to believe it’s only possible to make a difference when they’re older.

Being told they can’t do something at a young age might mean they never develop a desire to help others later in life.

The young people highlighted here blow that assumption out of the water. These young people took a problem in their community and designed a solution.

They didn’t look for short-term fixes or easy answers. They found sustainable projects that filled a void and weren’t afraid to get their hands dirty.

As they grew older, the spirit of service stayed. Many have developed new ways to make a difference, all at a young age.

These five youth will show just how much positive social change can be accomplished by having an idea and running with it.

 

Zach Bonner, from lwrf.org

Zach Bonner, from lrwf.org

1. Zach Bonner- Homeless Youth

Not many people can say they started a foundation at age 7. Zach Bonner can.

In 2004, after Hurricane Charley in Tampa, Florida, young Zach gathered supplies in his community and gave them to needy families affected by the hurricane. He transported donations in a little red wagon, the inspiration for his Little Red Wagon Foundation, which champions “kids helping kids.”

Zach didn’t quit there. Over the years, he has completed several long-distance walks and projects to raise awareness and resources for impoverished youth, specifically homeless youth.

From the LRWF website: “We all have the ability to make a change in this world if we just try.” We agree, Zach!

2. Brooklyn Wright- Litter

Brooklyn Wright is a young environmentalist and author. She was only in 2nd grade when she noticed her community’s litter problem. Instead of ignoring it or letting someone else fix it, she tackled the problem herself.

Brooklyn is the author of an interactive book called The Adventures of Earth Saver Girl, which uses a superhero to teach kids about the importance of protecting the planet. Her goal is to inspire other kids to make a difference.

She loves to tell other youth “you’re never too young to make a difference.” Awesome!

3. CareGirlz- Elderly

Caregirlz is a troupe of talented 6-13 year old girls who sing and dance in nursing homes, assisted-living centers, and children’s hospitals. The group was started by Abigail Lupi, who first performed at an assisted living center at age 7 in honor of her great-grandmother’s 100th birthday.

While at the assisted living center, Abigail learned that while her great-grandmother had visitors, a lot of the elderly residences didn’t have any. She aimed to change that. She gathered her friends and traveled to over 20 different locations around the state of New Jersey, performing pop and Broadway numbers.

Her goal is to put a smile on people’s faces by doing something she loves– singing and dancing.  This goal led her to a 2011 President’s Volunteer Service Award.

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4. Tristan and Jackson Kelley- School Supplies

When brothers Tristan and Jackson Kelley learned that many children in their area didn’t have backpacks or school supplies, they decided to do something. They used some of their own money, and matched funds from their parents, to purchase school supplies for children in their area.

This was the beginning of their non-profit charity, Backpacks for New Beginnings (BP4NB). By giving needy children backpacks and school supplies, Tristan and Jackson are helping them get an education.

Their school supplies prepare students and increase their confidence. They also help alleviate the financial burden of school supplies on families.

5. Katie Stagliano-Hunger

When Katie Stagliano was in 3rd grade, she received a cabbage seed. That seed would sprout and become an enormous 40-pound cabbage that started Katie on a mission to end hunger.

When visiting a soup kitchen, Katie realized how extensive the hunger problem is. She started Katie’s Krops, an organization that starts vegetable gardens and donates the harvest to local soup kitchens. In 2015, there were over 83 Katie’s Krops gardens across the United States.

Katie hopes to inspire others to garden and donate the harvest, even if it’s just from one pot on a front porch.

 

These 5 youth are on a mission to inspire others and change the world. They use their skills, whether performing or gardening, to help others and create solutions for some of their communities’ biggest problems.

These youth definitely prove you don’t have to wait to grow up to make a difference.

 

 

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