Get off your butt:

They walk among us.

We all know one. We admire their tenacity, their determination and their leadership abilities. They amaze us with their capacity to make informed, mature decisions. Their passionate desire to make the world a better place to live is truly inspirational. The agents of change I am talking about are not heads of state, corporate CEO’s or even executive director’s multi-national charitable organizations.

They are teenagers.

I consider myself very lucky to have one such teenager in my family. My cousin Mallory and her friends believe that they can make a difference in their community and they aren’t letting anyone stop them from helping those in need. From organizing winter clothing drives to anti-bullying campaigns, these girls are taking charge and showing adults, including myself, just how it’s done. They shatter the stereotype of disengaged teenagers who are selfish and uncaring. And they are not alone. There are teens around the world that demonstrate that they care enough to work to right the wrongs they see in their communities. These youth are challenging the status quo and making a real difference in the world.

Regardless of age, it’s not easy to influence change. One organization that is supporting teens in achieving their goals is Do Something. The aim of Do Something is…

“to inspire, empower and celebrate a generation of doers: teenagers who recognize the need to do something, believe in their ability to get it done, and then take action.”

According to the organization, only 23% of this generation is actively volunteering in their community. They are working to change that statistic.

Check out some of the youth that are doing something in their communities.

Resourceful investments

Do Something provides a plethora of resources to teens who want to start their own projects or volunteer for existing ones. They run boot camps that bring together youth leaders for training that gives them the tools to grow and sustain their action ideas, projects and organizations. They provide start-up grants for clubs and projects.

Their website has a great tool that allows youth to find existing volunteer opportunities and Do Something initiatives in their own community. To even begin to list all the resources they provide for teen action projects could take up an entire blog of it’s own.

Do Something is creating a movement and they’ve leveraged some serious star power. Check out some of the celebs who are encouraging positive action through Do Something.

Their YouTube Channel is filled with similar videos.

As an environment writer for The Socially Conscious Blog, I am definitely partial to environmental action but what I really dig about Do Something is the diversity of positive actions they encourage.

They have 11 broad categories that span from Animal Welfare, Disaster Response, Education, Environment, HIV and Sexuality, Poverty, Violence, Peace and Politics. They allow youth the freedom to choose where they want to make a difference and the support to create and follow their dreams for a better world.

Want to get out and Do Something?

There are so many ways to get involved!

  1. You or the youth in your life can use the Do Something resources to get started on a project of your own.
  2. Volunteer for an existing Do Something Club. Find one by clicking here >>
  3. Participate in one of their ongoing campaigns like their Cause of the Month – Battle for the Bands- a campaign to keep music education programs in schools or participate in the Green Your School Challenge.
  4. Nominate a world-changer for the Do Something Awards and get their efforts recognized.
  5. Go to Do Something University and learn something new that will help expand your mind and increase your impact.
  6. Participate in one of their forums on social and environmental issues.
  7. Donate to Do Something. They have a number of sponsorship options including online donations, in-kind gifts and corporate support. They also sell school supplies through Staples stores. Help them help others to make a difference.

Do Something Org

Like these youth, my cousin and her friends are out there making a difference and inspiring everyone they meet.  This article is dedicated to her and all youth who realize that even if you’re young, you have what it takes to get out there and Do Something.

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