Thank you to T-Mobile for sponsoring this post.
Finding ways to impact the world for good, may seem overwhelming. The reality is, there are many opportunities for positive change, right in our own communities. As a mom, one of my biggest hopes is to raise kids who have a desire to create change in the world. T-Mobile is giving teens and young adults the chance to do just that with the first T-Mobile Changemaker Challenge, a nationwide search for young people with big ideas for creating positive and lasting change in their communities.
I’m a mom of 6, and I realize I am biased, but I firmly believe that my kids have the ability to change the world for the better if they work for it. There are so many opportunities to serve and fill needs in all of our communities that finding an idea to work for shouldn’t be hard.
My family is very busy, and I’ve been frustrated that we haven’t had more time to reach out to our local community and beyond. I’ve realized that extra time is not going to magically appear in our schedule anytime soon. In order to make a positive change, we have to prioritize service and carve out the space in our schedule.
The T-Mobile Changemaker Challenge featured teens and young adults who have done just that. They have seen a need in their community and made the time to create a difference.
T-Mobile’s CEO, John Legere was so impressed by the top six teams that presented their ideas to him on Monday, that instead of choosing two CEO Picks, he named all top six teams as the winners. In addition, he made a personal donation of $30,000 to the Top 6 Changemaker Challenge teams in addition to the cash prizes they already received from the T-Mobile Foundation
The winning teams will receive a second, all-expenses-paid trip, to return to the T-Mobile headquarters and receive in-depth mentoring from the T-Mobile legal, marketing and finance teams. This is such an amazing opportunity for these teens to truly make a difference doing something that they are passionate about.
Hosting a Mom Changemaker Challenge
After hearing about some of the amazing ideas that young people have come up with as part of the T-Mobile Changemaker Challenge, I was inspired to get my own kids involved.
I hosted a mom Changemaker challenge and encourage my kids to come up with ideas to create positive change.
This challenge took my kids outside of their comfort zone. They have good hearts and love to help when they have the opportunity, but I’ve learned that it takes practice to learn to see needs around us.
It can be a challenge to change your thinking and look for opportunities to help.
My kids struggled to come up with their first idea, but once they started stretching their brains a bit, the ideas began to flow. After some brainstorming, they narrowed down their ideas to one that they were most passionate about.
My oldest son loves technology. He thought it would be a fabulous idea to offer computer training for low-income students that attend his school. They have some amazing technology classes available, but some students are at a disadvantage because they do not have computers at home. They end up working extra hard during school hours just to stay up with the rest of the class.
My second son is an animal lover. We volunteer together in animal rescue locally and it has been a great experience for us. He read a story recently about an animal shelter that brought school-aged kids in to read to the animals. Many animals in shelters are afraid so they don’t show well when potential families come in to see them. When these kids started reading to the animals, it helped them be less afraid and got them into the habit of coming to the front of the kennel and wagging their tail. The shelter in this story found that they had a dramatic decrease in the time it took to get an animal adopted because they looked friendlier. My son thought it would be a fabulous idea to do this locally and connect students who were struggling with their reading skills with animals in the shelter who needed a bit of extra attention.
My youngest son is the most playful in our family. He is always looking for ways to have fun. He remembered the experience he had visiting the Ronald McDonald house while my daughter was in the hospital after her near-drowning. It was obviously a stressful time for our family, but he enjoyed the fact that they had video games and toys available for siblings of kids who were hospitalized to play. We do not have a children’s hospital where we live now, but my son thought it would be a great idea to collect money to buy some video games and toys to donate to our local hospital for kids who were waiting for procedures.
I was so proud of my kids for setting the gears in motion for them to create some amazing changes in our community locally. I’d love to see some of their ideas take shape. In the meantime, I hope this challenge really sparked something in them and helps them look for ways to be a helper wherever they are needed as they go forward this year.