Newsletter: June, 2010

June 2010: Kids Can Change the World!
Don’t have a summer job yet? Want to make a difference in the world? Why not work for yourself and your community by becoming a social entrepreneur? In this issue, we’ll look at some resources and ideas that can help you get your social venture off the ground.
Biz Kid$ of the Month
Check out these YouTube videos from our show of young social entrepreneurs who have made a positive difference in their communities:

Live Green Learn Green: Two high school students start a project with a grant from Youth Venture, to help ‘green’ the homes of lower-income families.

Team Revolution: Check out TEAM Revolution, a youth-leadership center started by Divine Bradley. With the help of a grant from Youth Venture, Divine helped transform the youth in his inner-city Brooklyn neighborhood into community leaders and social entrepreneurs. By partnering with Polo Ralph Lauren, and Doritos, Divine proved that there are no limits to what a social entrepreneur can do.

Richard’s Rwanda: How can grade school girls change the world? Meet Jessica and her friends, who started Richard’s Rwanda, a community service project to help orphans from the genocide in Rwanda.

It all starts with you
In business, an entrepreneur is an individual who sees an opportunity and grabs it. You can do the same thing with opportunities to make your community and the world better. You don’t have to start a big organization or raise millions of dollars. All it takes is an idea and the dedication to follow through with it.
To get started, ask yourself, what changes would you like to see in your community–or the larger world?

  • Are there people in need of food, shelter, friendship, or opportunities?
  • Are you passionate about specific a social or environmental issue?
  • Is there a lack of opportunity for young people in your community?
  • Do you have a skill that you’d like to share or offer to people?
Build a Team
Next, find some like-minded friends or relatives to help you out. Have a meeting to brainstorm some ideas for how you can achieve your goals. Build your resources by raising money or recruiting more volunteers. Then, go out and do it!

Talk to the experts
There are lots of resources out there. Youth Venture is one of the best–they help young social entrepreneurs with $1,000 grants and other assistance to get projects going. Their mission is “to change fundamentally the role of young people in society, such that society values youth as powerful agents for social change.” Now that’s a worthy goal!

Why be a social entrepreneur? 
Besides the impact you will have on the world, following an idea through to completion in the real world and leading a team will give you a sense of empowerment. It might take you outside your comfort zone in ways that will help you learn about yourself and grow as a person. And, it will help your resume or college application stand out from the pack.