What AGE is this for?
These stories are fit for ANY age group, from babies to adults.
The experience totally varies from child to child.
- is watching the videos awesome?
- is it too much, at bedtime?
- do they dig the music, even perfom it?
- is it outside the kid’s realm of experience?
We never know. View examples on the right >>
Here is why I recommend some for the age group 10+
- is the cause rather abstract?
- does it affect not kids but rather teens and adults?
- is it too “ouch”?
What is right at what age?
- Alicia got interested in GMOs at age 5 (I sure didn’t) and started a petition that made Girl Scouts create a non-GMO cookie variant
- Chloe was 5 when she asked her mom why the man was eating from a garbage can. 3 months later she had distributed 20,000 meals to the homeless
- Coral launched an ace youtube channel on unhealthy food ingredients at age 7
Ergo – we cannot know!
All we know is that we have to give them these inspirational stories, and support them on-demand.
Advice for Adults & Parents
Our Role as Adults
is to make youth leadership stories present in the lives of
- our kids
- all kids
- other adults
and especially professionals
- public servants
as well as to
AND TO SUPPORT INSPIRED YOUTH
Parents' conscious participation is GOLD
- what your child is reading (view toggle : To Parents Outside North America)
- what is moving your child, harmoniously or disharmoniously
as well as
- to respond to questions
- to help with deeper exploration, online etc
- to engage in creative activities
to become companions in changemaking
- joining their ideas for activities
- supporting their activities
- at home, at school, in public
- involving friends and workplace
in order to
- strengthen their positive worldview
- skills, relations, confidence, resilience
- open up a rich life of opportunity
and LIVE A GREAT FAMILY LIFE
- as deep bonds in the family
- grow from shared experiences
To Parents Outside North America
YOUTH LEADERSHIP has been part of Civic Education
in North America for 50 years.
In today’s context of global learning, project-oriented learning culture, social media and escalating crisis, it is taking on sensational dimensions. It has shifted definition from “training young people as agents of change in their communities” to youth rising by themselves in response to local and global causes they learn about.
In every part of the world, we admire these children and teens as TRUE HEROINES and ROLE MODELS. This means that we imply … wouldn’t it be great, if kids and teens everywhere were as conscious about ecosocial causes, involved and successful, as confident, bright, experienced and skilled, in their own ways?
It is definitely what the world needs. And what our kids need.
There are a few challenges and hindrances for this to happen. They can all easily be overcome. But us, the adult generations that are NOT heroInes, who do NOT think, feel and act LIKE teen and adult heroInes, have to LET THEM DO IT, let them BE different from all earlier, unsustainable generations. From us failing adult generations.
At his point, I will only highlight the one pertaining to the STORIES OF YOUNG HEROINES (also view toggle HeroInes Respond to Crisis).
Some do address suffering, and stand up, also confronting “authorities” and industries.
European adults usually are afraid that their children perceive suffering in the world.
I understand this, as a European, a teacher and father.
And I have grown to different levels with Australians, Native Americans, grand changemakers around the globe and : North American teens.
North American Changemaker Kids
The North American kids do see suffering in the streets and on tv (anyway), and the hundreds of thousands involved in the sensational WE Day activities spread across 12,000 schools(!!!), appreciated by teachers, parents and millions watching on tv, ARE USED to see Craig’s story of suffering bonded child labourers, hearing of poverty, burned villages, hopeless aboriginal communities – and they RISE TO ACTION carried by their vision and experience of solutions, and the positive feedback on their impact mirrored by affected partners.
Only when perceiving suffering, a broken world, we feel empathy.
- Alicia, age 5 : “GMOs make bugs’ tummies explode. That can’t be good.”
- Craig, age 12 : “When you see a child suffer, you have the obligation to act.”
- Neha, age 9 :”When I became aware that these children had no parents, no home, no love, I decided to help.”
- Emma and Julia, age 13 : “When we learned that aboriginal youth had no books but suffered from high suicide rates, we decided to help.”
- Madi and Rhiannon, age 10 : “When we learned that Girl Scout cookies contained palm oil from deforestation leading to abuse and extinction of Orang Utans, as well as grave human rights abuses, we decided to act.”
- Other teens decided “to make our school free from bullying and sexual harassment.”
All these child-led initiaives (at last!) end atrocities caused, tolerated, sustained and aggravated by adults who never learned to face the suffering. This is no longer acceptable.
- Mayerly, age 12 : Seeing her best friend stabbed to death in the streets, her father murdered, ignoring death threats, she rose to mobilize 3 million children to create peace zones in Colombia’s civil, drug and gang wars. With cascading effects. By age 17, Mayerly was niminated three times for the Nobel Peace Prize
Mayerly: “When children speak of their suffering, adults are reminded of their own. Then, things change. Children can end the war.”
How to do it right
WHEN the perception of suffering is extremely deep and persists, without hope and promising, feasible solutions in sight, it can harm young people. But HERE, we have BRIEF mention and visual display of suffering combined with empathy + outrage + action + impact + success + celebration + what to do. This turns suffering into relief and action. And heals the world. And grows amazing human spirit.
This is a profound and precious experience.
This is what citizens normally cannot generate alone. This is why they have been afraid to address suffering and the broken world.
But this time is now over.
The Solutions Exist
The tools, tricks and support networks based on outstanding best practice examples already in use at 12,000 schools!!!, introduced BY students, and accompanied by caring teachers, provide the necessary. You can learn more about why and what makes these ROLE MODELS and MEDIA special here.
Hence, do not freak out when you see a story, images, videos showing suffering. Pay attention to how the teen heroInes react, how they feel the suffering, and how their determination grows to solve it. And see their shining smiles and faces, because they see it works.
Then, only then, can the child generation inheriting the broken world from you become free, awake confident, skilled and united to become different from incompetent adult generations and create a new world of peace, joy and abundance for all.
Adora Svitak, age 15 : “The idea (of education) is not to turn us into your kind of adults. But into better adults than you have been.”
If you think that this poses challenges to you – that’s right. YOU are to embark on a grand learning journey of growing into your role as adult – protecting people and planet, especially the vulnerable children and the feminine, from abuse, violence, pollution of their minds, bodies and hearts, and from fear for the future – as well into an inhabitant and co-creator of a global, peaceful, just, thriving and sustainable civilization. From victim to hero. From scared to sacred.
It requires you to change the way things were done in the past.
If you study “THIS YOUNG GENERATION”, and view the wide range of products and “HERO STORIES” with an abundance of uplifting imagery, favorite causes for everybody, touching one’s heart, dreams and “THE HERO’S VIRTUES”, with “FAMILY ACTIVITIES” playfully uniting kids, parents and friends for exciting activities, connecting into SCHOOLS across age groups, with favorite activities for everybody, backed up by a global community … you see, that the tools, tricks and support for walking the most beautiful path with your children and students are available.
The Young are your Teachers.
Learn from the Successful Hero Models.
Trust that their stories and their authentic media, images, words
- used over years
- shown on media
- used in schools
And that it is the GUIDE for the non-hero young and adult generations beyond North America to upgrade.
Take the example of the 60s, while the rest of the world was still deep in the dark, fascist fifties.
These are the new sixties, but wayyy different.
Not twens walking the streets asking for others to make the rules more fair. Twisted and remote-controlled by ideologies.
But teens taking tangible action, wielding their superpowers (which are more complex than you think)
This is the game changer to everything.
THIS IS THE NEW.
To learn this NEW, you have to become DIFFERENT.
Once again – your guide is not Eric, but the HERO TEENS.
I am only the messenger packaging and passing on their authentic spirit to the world
through these media and the live services and leadership programs they connect with.
NOW LET’S DO THIS!
Do not project onto the kids
- that they should feel inspired
- feel empathy
- take action
Do not annoy your kids, be pushy
- all initiative has to grow from the children
- that’s why it is called youth leadership
or you achieve the contrary
- you close them to the topic
- distort, pollute their involvement, make them tools
like “overly ambitious parents living their dreams through their kids”
If you feel frustrated by a lack of involvement by your kids, it means there is an energy inside YOU that wants to be lived. GO LIVE IT to the max by
- SEEDING MEDIA
- GETTING YOUR WORKPLACE ETC INVOLVED
- SUPPORTING INSPIRED YOUTH
(view “THIS YOUNG GENERATION”)
Do not tell them this is hopeless, impossible…
- dults told Craig Kielburger that it was impossible, hopeless to help children inbonded labour, buld schools for them. Tpday, he has action teams in 12,000 schools has changed laws, lives and learning culture and says : “Banish the terms hopeless, impossible from your vocabulary. We can change the world.”
Do not resist to getting involved at their school, at your workplace, with the media and mayor
- or you would embody the uncaring citizen and problem why the world is broken
- use our media and simple ways for soft, welcome entries to those spheres and creating win-wins
HeroInes by Definition Respond to Crisis
The title says it all.
Now, let’s look at the shining kids you admire, are proud of, give you hope for humanity:
Their stories begin by seeing that the world is broken. They feel the pain or threats to people and planet and see a solution, and get up and take steps to solve it. As they progress, they experience success, win allies and go bigger. This feedback loop keeps their spirit alive, shows them that we can heal the world. It is medicine for the soul. You see how their faces shine!
You know that their immense range of activities, of research, presentation, public speaking, planning, perfoming, media presence, relations with teachers, journalists, authorities, changemakers generate an enormous amount of skills that make surfing through society a breeze. It opens doors and paths to staying true to one’s values and make a living.
This is also a stark reminder that the mass of people does not lead professional lives aligned with their values, that youth suffer from bullying, lack of vision, passion, precious friends, eye-level encounters with adults, of relevance… and the mass of youth and adults, also the top brass in business, politics etc are completely incompetent at creating a better world. But hey – where is this leading?
The solution lies in our young generation to grow up living their inner values, the Virtues, and acting accordingly.
The aspect of “affirming that the world is broken and suffering” requires a special “Message to Parents outside North America” – view toggle
Hero Kids and their Parents
It’s on the kids to decide, and in their hands to act.
That’s why it’s called YOUTH LEADERSHIP.
ALL youth featured in YL media started out by themselves, and lead their initiatives.
That’s why experts call YOUTH-LEADER “the epitome of youth leadership”.
None of them is a parents’ tool, frontpig or shill. I know them personally.
Parents were actually freaked out by their kids’ ideas!
Of course, these gentle, shining souls have gentle parents who were taken by surprise, concerned and worried about their child’s steps of challenging industries, speaking at their school and in media … you know : trolls, bullies, madness, media…
But they sensed, that they had to permit their children to shine and move, or they would have broken their hearts, spirit and wings and poisoned the family.
So, these ordinary adults (not hero activists, but people with ordinary jobs) trusted the flow of life, their kids, accompanied them … and began to experience a blissful journey, seeing their children florish into amazing teens, with great friends and values… and into young adults – walking their path, able to make a living aligned with their values.
BINGO! It’s incredibly beautiful to see their journey unfold and be part, uplifting them!
You can now do the same – for these teen and twen heroInes, your kids and those in your spheres of influence.
Are your Kids Inspired? Maybe. Maybe not.
Some are silent, not a doer for others, not an action type. Maybe they intuitively know it is not the time, that the setting (friends, school) is unfit. This doesn’t make them wrong. They may be a healer or gardener type, and awaken in 10 years from now. That’s totally fine.
What matters is THAT THEY KNOW of solutions, youth power, the power of one and where to find support.
DO make youth leadership present in their lives.
When the Read Comes Alive
and readers are inspired
“The most inspirational videos I have ever seen. it makes me feel I want to get up and do something, too.”
we need to respond to their passion!! – or the flame dies.
As a parent, I recommend that you
- participate in the reading experience
- are open to conversations, questions
- immerse yourself in stories and videos
- openly share your feelings with your kids
- respnd to their questions and ideas
- team up for activities
- support their initiatives