The seeds of each new idea for a project or initiative are usually rooted in a source of inspiration. Take a minute to think about who and what inspires you. Do you have a mentor? Do you have a hero? Is there someone in your life who you really respect or someone that represents something important to you?
Write down the names of a few people who have inspired you and why. It could be someone that you know like a friend, teacher or family member, or perhaps a community leader, author, artist or activist?
Meet inspiring people
“As a member of TakingITGlobal, I experience the magnificent diversity of ways of thinking in the world. I believe that my experience in TakingITGlobal has impacted my personality and perception of others in a very positive way. Being part of this community has broadened my mind by participating in the discussion boards, improving my conflict resolution approaches. Through the Global Gallery, I share my artwork reflecting my cultural background with artists from around the world. Most important, the volunteer work I am engaged in inside my local community is provided with a new global dimension.”
- Ayman, Egypt
“We live in a context of ignorance – people don't think about how their actions or inactions affect others,” says Lina, founder of the United Students for Fair Trade (USFT). “Universities provide a common arena for raising awareness of inequities in a corporate-centered model of global trade. However, academic curriculum often stops short of suggesting viable alternatives.” Lina set out to raise awareness about Fair Trade in a student movement that now has more than 300 Universities across the United States carrying out campaigns."
- Lina, United States
“Young people do not only ensure sustainability, they energize processes and are the major drivers of technology – extending the perimeters of innovation”, says ‘Gbenga, who has been working tirelessly, over the past five years, on strengthening the voice of youth in decision-making processes as it relates to Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs)."
- 'Gbenga, Nigeria
Ways that young people change the world:
- As voices against injustice
- As promoters of environmental and social awareness
- As presenters at conferences, forums and summits
- As trainers, mentors, coaches and tutors
- As artists, musicians and actors
- As organizers of petitions, campaigns and protests
- As entrepreneurs creating businesses and jobs
- As volunteers and fund-raisers for charity
- As conscious consumers
- As responsible users of natural resources
"Each day, 6,000 Africans die from AIDS. Each day, an additional 11,000 are infected. Millions of children are left orphaned, forced to face a life of poverty and vulnerability. At the age of 7, Mabvuto lost his parents and years later lost his three sisters and one of his brothers. As a young child, he was faced with a tragic situation and at one point, found himself begging on the streets with very little hope. Due to the nature of his vulnerability, he was offered a chance to go to school and study Information Technology through a government loan program. This opportunity helped Mabvuto gain a range of skills and led to the development of an incredible initiative – Youth Care Trust. Mabvuto explains that the aim of his project is to “get street kids and vulnerable youths out of the streets and bring them to a safe and stable living home environment”. Through creating fundraisers such as music concerts and sports games that raise awareness about HIV/AIDS, money was raised to support the project. They decided to rent a house to provide shelter for 12 orphaned street kids as well as offer education and training on basic literacy skills, HIV/AIDS, Information Technology and other relevant areas. Getting this idea off the ground was no easy task."
- Mabvuto, Malawi
"In recent years, the Ministry of Education in New Zealand made a significant technology investment in the education sector. Their aim was to have each classroom equipped with computers or laptops in order to enhance learning and better prepare students for the 21st century. Very quickly, they found that it was the teachers who they had to better prepare. Cherrie explains that “some teachers find using technology annoying at first. They don't understand the value of using it - where as computing is natural for kids”. In order to help teachers better incorporate Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) into their lives and the classroom, Tech Angels was formed at Wellington Girls' College. The idea was to have tech savvy students work with teachers one-on-one each week, helping to improve their ICT literacy skills."
- Cherrie, New Zealand
Sources of inspiration:
- Read stories about inspirational young people
- Spend time outside and connect with nature
- Surf the Internet and look through inspirational sites
- Go to your local art gallery, museum or cultural centre
Check out Featured Member stories on TakingITGlobal:
Find young people taking action from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe by going to: http://members.tigweb.org