With school summer holidays upon us, many of us need ‘Create Your Own Happy’ more than ever, to help our youngsters make the most of every day.
As children get older these weeks still stretch ahead. Teenagers are gaining more independence, but it may help them spend their time wisely if they have a project or two to keep themselves busy and engaged. It makes such a difference if they can finish their days with a sense of satisfaction and achievement, and that these have been hours well spent.
New book ‘You can Change the World! includes interviews with more than 50 teenagers who have found ways to use their time creatively, transforming their own lives or the world around them.
Author Margaret Rooke says, “One of the lessons from the book is that no one should be afraid of taking that first step to making a change. You never know where it will lead.
“Many of the teenagers in the book needed just a bit of encouragement to find what they felt strongly about – after this they were fired up and there was no stopping them.”
Reading these interviews can inspire your teenager or pre-teen to try something different and make an impact. Take a look at:
- Tolly, 18, who runs an ethical clothing blog and buys all her clothes second hand. Then see if your teens will do the ‘charity shop challenge’ and do their shopping there;
- Parry, 21, who since he was 16 has been campaigning to clear the oceans of plastic. Get your kids to do a beach clean, or plastic pick-up in their local park;
- Cameron, 17, who set up his own football team after being left out of matches because he has cerebral palsy. Can your teen bring a group together for a casual kick-about or more?
- Maya, 15, and Will, 15, who’ve both raised thousands of pounds for causes they believe in. There are so many ways your teenager can raise cash and change lives in the process.
- Lucy, 17, who at 14 persuaded major supermarkets to stop selling eggs from caged hens by gathering hundreds of thousands of signatures online. Is there a petition your young person could start to make a change to something they believe is wrong?
And if your teen at home is feeling down and without focus, there’s advice in the book from climate change activist Greta Thunberg: “When we start to act, hope is everywhere,” she says. “So instead of looking for hope, look for action. Then the hope will come.”
Have a great summer!
‘You can Change the World! Everyday Teen Heroes Making a Difference Everywhere.’ Jessica Kingsley Publishers. £12.99