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Kids are Heroes

July 14, 2009

I feel like a totally inadequate, unproductive, pathetic drain on society and I love it. 

Allow me to explain.

I was recently introduced to an inspiring website called Kids are Heroes, “the place where all kids can make a difference!”  The site is dedicated to showcasing kids who are literally changing the world by putting their time and energy into charitable projects (often of their own design).  Kids are Heroes is also meant to inspire and help other kids get involved with meaningful projects, and to give parents and teachers the tools they need to support these efforts. 

Gather your kids around the computer, and click on the website’s link to Lily’s Heroes.  They’ll see page after page of kids just like them doing amazing things for other people.  Featured Heroes range from teens Brittany and Robbie Bergquist, co-founders of Cell Phones for Soldiers (so far they’ve provided over 2.7 million minutes of talk time for troops serving overseas); to Joey Athey, who over the past six years has raised enough money selling Christmas cookies to donate over $2,000 worth of toys to a local charitable organization; to Jourdan Urbach, Juilliard violin prodigy, winner of the 2009 AAN Neuroscience Research Prize (I have to work hard just to spell “neuroscience,” for Pete’s sake) and – in 1998 at age seven – founder of Children Helping Children which has raised over $1.5 million for neurologically-focused research and musical therapy programs; to Alaina Podmorow, who at age nine started Little Women for Little Women in Afghanistan and has raised over $100,000 to help educate Afghan girls.

Anyone else out there feeling a bit inadequate?

I love it because the kids highlighted on Kids are Heroes might as well have lined up in person and kicked (in a non-harmful way, of course) my big ol’ complacent behind.  I love it because this website makes a big deal out of kids who are making a big deal about helping others.  And I love it because it genuinely gives me hope for this great planet’s future.

Even though some of the projects are out of the scope of my current time and energy, there are plenty that my kids and I are perfectly capable of taking on.  Or perhaps we’ll come up with our own unique take on it.  Either way, I can no longer ignore the fact that it really is possible for one person – even one kid – to make a world of difference.

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