I believe we need to start showing our children great people. Showing them what people are doing and what people have done. Our kids are inundated with shallow, bubble headed, scripted TV, movie, and music stars. It’s all they see so it’s all they see as a role model.
Now is the time to start changing the role models by exposing kids to these role models.
This is also a call to all adults to shape up. Every kid around you is modeling their behavior off of your antics and outlooks. They are creating ideas of how their world is going to go based on the examples you give them. You, the adult around them the most, is the 1st role model!
Next, these students and kids need to know they have the ability to do amazing things! Not only that, they can do amzing things NOW!!! They need to know that they CAN do amazing things to help create positive change. Many kids are told NO so much, they forget that they do have the ability to do things.
Check these kids out…talk about great role models for us all:
There are kids changing the world right now….and most kids don’t even know them.
Abby Goldberg, a student from Grayslake, Ill., was working on an effort to ban single-use plastic bags in her community as part of a school project. After beginning to mobilize many in her community to support the effort, lobbyists with the plastics industry put pressure on statewide legislators to prevent local communities in Illinois from banning plastic bags
Juliette Brindak, 13 – thought that middle school was really really hard and it would be nice to have a little haven on the net for TWEENS. Created Miss O and Friends, a girls-only online destination known for its games, articles, and social community. It has helped hundreds of thousands of tween girls get through those crazy years.
Julia Bluhm, 14 – Julia wasn’t happy with the way the young fashion magazines portray beauty, so she petitioned to change the face of the industry, asking Seventeen to stop retouching photos in their pages—and garnered 84,000 signatures in agreement.
Mellisa Stephens, 14
To get more girls interested in all those numbers, she started a free, weeklong math camp with her sister and a couple friends called MathMania. “In the higher math exams and competitions … almost all of the participants and top scorers are male,” Stephens told Business Insider. “I find the lack of female participation appalling. MathMania has enabled me to pass on my love of math to the next generation of male and female students alike.”
Mackenzie Bearup, 18
She says it’s like a bomb exploding in her knee. That’s what the distress of Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy feels like, a localized-pain syndrome Mackenzie Bearup has suffered from since age 10. She turned to books to cope with the random, severe attacks. “When I read, it’s a real escape,” Bearup told CNN. “I try to take myself into the book instead of in the real world where I’m in so much pain.” She wanted others dealing with trauma—from child abuse, to domestic violence, to the homeless—to find that escape, too. Bearup began asking around for used books to donate to people in need, and her cause blew up. Her nonprofit, Sheltering Books, Inc., has gifted over 119,000 books to date.
Hannah Taylor, 10
When five year-old Hannah Taylor saw a homeless man eating out of a garbage can, she set out to cure the world of homelessness with hugs and ladybugs – as Hannah says, ladybugs represent luck and homeless people need good luck. With some help from the ‘rents, she set up The Ladybug Foundation and painted baby food jars like ladybugs and asked businesses for spare change. Now 10 years old, Hannah has raised more than half a million dollars and doesn’t plan on slowing down!
Craig Kielburger, 12
One morning before school, Craig Kielburger was looking for the comics section of the newspaper when he noticed an article about a 12 year-old Pakistani boy who was murdered for speaking out against child labor. Craig was only 12 at the time and didn’t even know what child labor was, but soon learned there were 250 million child laborers in the world! Wanting to put a stop to this, he started Free the Children with a group of classmates. Craig is now 23 and Free the Children has become the largest organization of children helping children, with partnerships with the United Nations and Oprah’s Angel Network.
Alex’s Lemonade Stand grew from a front yard lemonade stand into a national organization for kids with cancer. Alexandra “Alex” Scott was diagnosed with cancer two days before her first birthday, but when she turned four, she set up a lemonade stand to help her doctors find a cure. Although Alex passed away when she was eight, her campaign lives on. Thousands of children, schools, businesses and organizations hold annual lemonade stands to support this charity, which has raised over $5 million for pediatric cancer research.
Kids Saving the Rainforest
Kids Saving the Rainforest is a non-profit organization in Costa Rica that was founded by Janine Licare and Aislin Livingstone in 1998. In an effort to protect the local rainforests and endangered wildlife, the girls set up a roadside table and sold painted rocks. A year later, they opened the Kids Saving the Rainforest store to sell their artwork, as well as the work of local artists. All of the profits go to saving the rainforest and rehabilitating baby animals.
That’s why, when Annie Wignall found out about these unfortunate incidents in January of 2000, she decided to do something about it. Annie, who was just 11 at the time, couldn’t imagine not having her own toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo or soap, and saw the need to reach out to these kids. She came up with the idea of filling beautiful fabric Care Bags with brand new items that had been donated to the cause. The Care Bags Foundation is the result of Annie’s big heart and dedication.
Dylan Mahalingam, 9
At the ripe age of 9, Dylan Mahalingam co-founded Lil’ MDGs, a nonprofit international development and youth empowerment organization and an initiative of Jayme’s Fund. Lil’ MDGs mission is to leverage the power of the digital media to engage children in the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). His organization has mobilized more than 3 million children around the globe to work on a variety of issues, with more than 24,000 regular volunteers hailing from 41 countries. Dylan is a youth speaker for the United Nations as well as a chief strategist and project ambassador for Under the Acacia.
Ryan Hreljac, 6
In 1998, 6-year-old Ryan Hreljac was shocked to learn that children in Africa had to walk many kilometers every day just to fetch water. Ryan decided he needed to build a well for a village in Africa. By doing household chores and public speaking on clean water issues, Ryan’s first well was built in 1999 at the Angolo Primary School in a northern Ugandan village. Ryan’s determination led to Ryan’s Well Foundation, which has completed 667 projects in 16 countries, bringing access to clean water and sanitation to more than 714,000 people.
Katie Stagliano, 9
In 2008, 9-year-old Katie Stagliano brought a tiny cabbage seedling home from school as part of the Bonnie Plants Third Grade Cabbage Program. As she cared for her cabbage, it grew to 40 pounds. Katie donated her cabbage to a soup kitchen where it helped to feed more than 275 people. Moved by the experience of seeing how many people could benefit from the donation of fresh produce to soup kitchens, Katie decided to start vegetable gardens and donate the harvest to help feed people in need. Today, Katie’s Krops donates thousands of pounds of fresh produce from numerous gardens to organizations that help people in need. Katie is now a 12-year-old student at the Pinewood Preparatory School in Summerville, S.C
We have to start showcasing and putting good role models in front of the students of today. Maybe then the students will see that there is more to life than riches, infidelity, violence, and excess.
Do you want to showcase someone you think is doing amazing things? Let me know…