Join the British Red Cross in celebrating the extraordinary things that ordinary young people do in the UK every day to help others in their communities: nominate a young person aged 25 or under for the charity’s annual Humanitarian Citizen Awards. You have until the 14th of July to vote HERE for those groups or individuals you feel selflessly make a difference to the lives of others in their community, through:
- First aid (“young first aid heroes who have stepped forward to help when needed, performing life-saving acts or responding to small-scale incidents”);
- Volunteering (“young people who give up their own time to help others, in whatever capacity”);
- Community action (“young people – or groups – who make a positive contribution in the community”); or
- Fundraising (“do you know anyone who’s been using their imagination and energy to raise money for a good cause?”).
The winners will be announced at a ceremony on 5th October 2013.
This blog is usually about young people’s volunteering, and what they are doing for charitable causes… with particular emphasis on the UK. But a teen actress’s stand against drink and drugs, and the wild party scene that so many stars fall into, has really impressed me, and I felt that I ought to pass it on today.
Sixteen-year-old Chloë Grace Moretz – star of Kick-Ass – was recently quoted in Nylon magazine as being totally disinterested in becoming a party girl like Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan. She rejects the temptation to go on wild nights out, saying she doesn’t want to risk what she has accomplished so far in her Hollywood career.
Here’s what this young role model had to say:
“I’m, like, incredibly straight-laced, considering what some 16 year olds are doing. It’s probably because I’ve gone to nice events with big people there since I was a young girl. Kids my age at school are fighting to get into clubs and be around an open bar, whereas I’ve had the opportunity to drink and do drugs if I wanted to, and I haven’t. I look around me and go, ‘God’s put me here for a reason. Why would I want to go take a drug or do something that can strip away everything I’ve worked for?’ This business is not peaches and cream, and I’ve fought tooth and nail to earn this spot.”
What a star – we need more teen role models like this!
This blog has highlighted on several occasions the impact that sport can have on young people’s development, so I was interested to hear recently of an initiative in the South-West (of the UK) called Community Action Through Sport (CATS), which was set up in Bude, North Cornwall, eight years ago, to encourage youth involvement in the community by rewarding participants with opportunities to experience new sporting activities, as well as other “healthy living rewards”.
Created initially in response to a local anti-social behaviour problem, the CATS initiative now involves school, youth group, sports and police representatives, as well as the young people themselves, and sets out to improve the latter’s image in the area. CATS branches have already been established across Devon and Cornwall, touching the lives of hundreds of young people, and the securing of additional (Big Lottery & Lloyds TSB) funding means that the programme will now be rolled out across the rest of the UK.
There are five levels of CATS awards, and levels 3-5 are designed to dovetail with the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme. Rewards range from a leisure swim with a friend (Level 1) to an ‘extreme sports’ weekend (Level 5). Sports and other celebrities are usually involved in the award ceremonies.
Although we have seen a number of schemes that use sport to encourage youth volunteering and leadership development, this is the first I have come across that actually uses sporting incentives as prizes – an interesting idea. CATS says, “Volunteering is the Inspiration, Recognition is the key, and Sport is the driving force.”
I don’t often do this… but I received an email today, requesting help with publicity for a charity event coming up in a few weeks, here in the UK, and I thought I’d share it with you on Generosity News, even though it’s not actually about young people. It may be that some of you will be willing to take the very simple step requested below, in order to give this nevertheless very worthy cause a bit of a boost over the next day or two.
The email, from Ed Lester, of The Abundance Index, was headed: “Let’s make something magic happen!” Here’s what it said:
I really need your help with something.
I just had a visit from my mother. Apparently my only sister is VERY cross with me.
The reason for this?
Well my sister’s one of six nurses in the UK who are taking part in a sponsored bike ride.
174 miles across The Hadrian Cycleway–some tough terrain. All of this for a worthy charity…The Rosemere Cancer Foundation.
They’ve put together a Facebook page, a website and everything.
My sister, needless to say, is deeply hurt that I haven’t been in and “liked” her FB page.
Only problem is, nobody told me she was even taking part in this event. I didn’t know till 5 minutes ago!
Once I found out, I rushed straight into my Facebook account and clicked the like button on her page.
But do you know what I found sad?
Such a noble and extreme effort these amazing nurses are making and they only have 15 likes on their page
So I figured together we can put that to rights!
Would you mind very much, going to this page on Facebook and clicking like?
I think together we can get this number way higher. Maybe even 1000 likes over the next few hours.
The great thing about this…
My sister along with everyone else in the UK is currently sleeping through the night and will be unlikely to be awake for a few hours yet.
Imagine her face lighting up (should she indeed see her FB likes counter go up to 1000 or more)!
Please pull out all the stops to help me make this happen.
The guys will be delighted, and I’ll be back in the family good books too!
It’s greatly appreciated I can assure you
Have a wonderful day!
The Abundance Index
PS If you want to further support Claire’s efforts and The Rosemere Cancer Foundation, there’s a link from their FB page to the actual website where you can find out more and even make a small donation.
A new Community Award Scheme has just been launched in Bedfordshire, UK, to recognise the contributions to local communities by young people. Run by Biggleswade Sandy Lions, it aims to honour community or environmental work carried out by groups of youngsters between the ages of 9 and 20, over a weekend or longer – either as a standalone project, or as part of an ongoing scheme. Winning groups will receive a certificate and £100 to be spent as they choose.
The Lions want to encourage youth involvement, as they believe that not only will it benefit the community but it will also be character-building for the participants. This is exactly what we have been saying, at the Chreda Foundation – where we will also be launching a prize award scheme in a few months’ time. However, our scheme will be directed at individual young people.
To nominate a project for the Lions to consider, call Roger Wolburn on 01462 814967 or Judith Hagger on 0845 833 9749, and just tell them what will be done, when and where: they will then arrange to come and check it out.
The Lions are part of Lions Clubs International, a volunteer organisation consisting of 1.35 million men and women of all ages (and from all walks of life) in over 200 countries, who devote their time to serving less fortunate people locally and world-wide.