From installing buddy benches at schools and other local spots to recycling plastics to saving vulnerable animals – on land and in water – these kids are changing the world one act at a time. They are taking their future into their own hands and improving our world on a global level. We are so excited to be launching our Global Youth Change-Makers Directory before Christmas so you can be aware of what these selfless youth are up to and decide if you would like to support a youth change-maker cause this holiday season or to get involved in their programs.
The choices below include kids who have started and run their own registered charities or represent a registered charity. We are starting off with the kids we have featured this year and including a few extras who have stories scheduled for early next year. We hope you find this resource useful and will be activity updating it every month moving forward. If you are a youth change-maker and would like to be featured with us in our blog and included in our directory, please contact our editor, Lorrie Holmes, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hi, my name is Addy Barrett. I am 13 years old and I live in Germantown, Maryland. Ever since I was in first grade, I have been working to raise money and awareness for the endangered mountain gorilla. It started when I read a book about mountain gorillas and how critically endangered they were. I immediately wanted to do something so I went home and made a poster. I got a lot of support from friends and family, and the rest is history.
I really like to make my projects educational, but also fun so that I can captivate younger audiences. Over the past several years I have sold t-shirts, hosted three Gorilla Galas, initiated a Gorilla Hi 5 challenge, made gorilla toys and so much more. Through these efforts Gorilla Heroes has raised over $13,000 for gorilla conservation.
The keys to surviving and thriving in 2021 are to find ways to cultivate emotional rest through play, tears, and meaningful relationships.Dr. Deborah MacNamara, Author of REST PLAY GROW
Luckily, during these strange times, there are many wonderfully dedicated child development experts available to offer extra support to parents in the form of coaching and other areas of guidance so we can show up as our best selves for our kids while we continue to navigate our way through all of this. We have researched and compiled a list of such individuals who we would like to make you aware of. There are many others we will add to this list in the future, but for now, we are starting off with these wonderful leaders in child development and parent coaching. Each of these dedicated individuals offer services to guide parents and have authored books & workshops on their areas of expertise. We’re also excited to be including Certified Health Coach & Holistic Nutritionist, Juliana Avella, and her brand new Made Simple FREE App that provides valuable resources for moms and moms-to-be. Hope you enjoy this resource and we look forward to bringing you more supportive tips and tools as we learn about them throughout this year.
Written & Illustrated by Celeste, Age 9
A few years ago there was an envelope. It wasn’t any old envelope because this one could talk. No one knew that this envelope contained Santa’s List even though it said Santa’s list on the front of it! Still, no one noticed that is was his real list. Santa had written the list then sent it beforehand. The reason why he did this is because there was a problem with mice coming and eating all the paper. So he sent it all the way to Canada, with the hope of getting it back safely.
Written by Sammie Vance, Youth Change-Maker
When I think of Christmas I think of family and traditions. This year will be a little bit different with the pandemic. There are some traditions that we will not be able to do, like big family gatherings, going to see the Christmas Carol, and watching a new movie in the theatre on Christmas Eve.
Interviewed by Lorrie Holmes
My book publishing journey has been chalk full of researching, learning, connecting, and growing! My goal in creating Hi It’s Me, I Have ADHD was, If my book can impact the life of one child with ADHD, then it will be worth it! Two years later, I now have a child who is diagnosed with ADHD. I have life experience with it. I am educated about it. I teach and coach children who have it. I am an author of a children’s book about it. I am also a mama to a daughter who is impacted by it! These are all of the things that have turned me into an expert on ADHD.Katelyn Mabry, Author, Hi It’s Me, I Have ADHD
Since childhood, I have been involved with music in some way. From lessons, to choirs and even bands. After completing my degree in music education from Western University, I taught in public schools for a number of years before finding my dream job at Music Together of Kitchener-Waterloo. Here is where I can teach with passion in an environment that I love.
– Written by Justin Sather
My name is Justin Sather. I am 10 years old and I live in Los Angeles, California. Frogs are my favourite animal. I know a lot about frogs. Frogs are amphibians. They live on land and in water. There are over 5,000 different types of frogs that live around the world. I also know that frogs need our help.Justin Sather, International Youth Changemaker
In Kindergarten I learned that frog populations are on the decline. Herpetologists discovered one-third of amphibian species are disappearing all over the world. They are shocked that so many frogs are dying. Frogs are indicator species. They breath and drink through their skin and this makes them sensitive to the environment. Sick frogs are telling us that the planet needs our help. Frogs have been alive for thousands of years. It made me sad to hear that frogs could go extinct. Frogs are interesting animals. It’s amazing that frogs start off as tadpoles. Also, I like all the bright coloured frogs. My favourite frogs are strawberry dart frogs, mossy, frogs, and the glass frog. All these frogs make the world more magical! My goal is to tell the world about the frogs. I want people to know frogs are telling us the planet needs our help. I want to teach people to take take of our planet. I started to sell toy frogs to my friends, family, classmates and neighbours, to raise awareness.
When children are immersed in nature, they gain self confidence, grit, and problem solving skills that they can use to thrive in all areas of their lives. At Wasatch Nature School our goal is to help each child plant seeds of the wonder that will sprout into a lifelong connection to nature and learning.Kristy Nuttall, Marketing Director/Head Nature Teacher