The Young Activist's Guide to Building a Green Movement and Changing the World — Sharon J. Smith


The Brower Youth Awards honor some of the best activists in America. Not just the best young activists—but the best activists, period. They have a lot to teach us in this book!

--Bill McKibben, author of Eaarth and founder, 350.org

If you ever thought about wanting to change the world, but didn’t know where to start, then buy this book. It’s an inspiring and practical guide for young people who want to take the first steps toward finding real solutions for the planet.

--Michael Brune, executive director, Sierra Club

Organizers spend decades developing tools and learning systems that Sharon Smith puts at the fingertips of young activists within a weekend.

--Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, CEO, Green for All

I love this book. There’s no time to wait—the world needs you now. Take these strategies and make them your own.

--Adam Werbach, chief sustainability officer, Saatchi & Saatchi

Every day I get hundreds of emails from Story of Stuff viewers, asking what they can do to make a difference in the world. Now I can simply tell them one thing: Read The Young Activist’s Guide to Building a Green Movement + Changing the World. Really, everyone should read this book.

--Annie Leonard, director, The Story of Stuff Project

If you want to make a significant and sustainable impact on the health of our planet, this powerful and practical guide can help. Author and activist Sharon J. Smith (see About the Author) shares proven strategies and lessons learned from the winners of Earth Island Institute’s Brower Youth Awards—America’s top honor for young green leaders. Here are all the tools you need—from planning a campaign and recruiting supporters to raising money and attracting media attention—to turn your ideas into actions and make changes that matter.

Throughout The Young Activist's Guide to Building a Green Movement and Changing the World, Sharon spotlights stories from youth like Jessie-Ruth Corkins, who saved her school $90,000 by greening its heating system for a science project, and Billy Parish, whose small student group became one of the most influential coalitions in America addressing climate change.  These eco-heroes have made headlines for passing legislation, founding nonprofits, and raising millions of dollars for sustainability--all before their twenty-third birthdays. Eco-heroes like Jessie-Ruth Corkins, who saved her school $90,000 by greening its heating system for a science project, and Billy Parish, whose small student group became one of the most influential coalitions in America addressing climate change are just two Youth Award winners profiled in the book.

These eco-heroes have made headlines for passing legislation, founding nonprofits, and raising millions of dollars for sustainability. The Young Activist's Guide to Building a Green Movement and Changing the World is filled with inspiring stories, great tips and strategic plans. If you want to get something done in your community or on your campus, this is the book to help you combine your passion with energy to make a difference and create positive change in the world. A must read for organizers and activists of any age!
  
All author proceeds from the sale of this book go to Earth Island Institute’s Brower Youth Awards to support the next generation of young activists.

BOOK DESCRIPTION

  • Condition: New. Glued binding.
  • Edition: Paperback - Published February 22, 2011
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press, Crown Publishing Group / New York
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580085618
  • ISBN-10 158008561X
  • Pages: 224
  • Rating:★★★★★ (See FAQs)
  • SHARON J. SMITH is program advisor for Earth Island Institute’s Brower Youth Awards, a program that honors the best and brightest environmental leaders in the United States under 23 years of age. She has worked extensively with youth and student networks in the global justice, peace, and environmental movements. Smith graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, with degrees in conservation and resource studies and anthropology.
  • When Ethan Schaffer was fifteen, he was diagnosed with lymphoma cancer. He left his friends in ninth grade and underwent five months of intensive and brutal chemotherapy. Fortunately, the treatment worked and he survived. But the experience changed him. He began to question why kids were getting cancer and started asking what he could do to create change. Eventually this led Ethan to explore healthy and sustainable living by working on organic farms in New Zealand. Revitalized by the experience, Ethan realized that the solution to both health and environmental problems lay in individuals learning to live sustainably. When he returned to the United States in 2001, he launched GrowFood.org. Grow Food helps people experience sustainable living by connecting them with opportunities to work on organic farms. Less than a decade later, the program has connected more than twenty thousand people with opportunities to live, eat, and grow food more sustainably on nearly two thousand farms in all fifty states and in forty-one countries. “We need to get toxic chemicals off the farm and out of the food system. Organic farming is good for both the planet and people.” -- Ethan Schaffer
  • Think about your community—your neighborhood, town, or city. Could you work to protect and establish more parks and green space as Connie Shahid did? Seventeen-year-old Connie Shahid wasn’t always familiar with environmental issues. A senior in high school, she lived in a San Francisco neighborhood called Bayview-Hunters Point, a polluted and economically depressed area surrounded by freeways, a power plant, and a naval shipyard. She was looking for a job when she encountered Literacy for Environmental Justice (LEJ), an organization that addressed the health and environmental concerns in her community. She began working to combat the destructive effects of industrialization and landfills on the native wetlands that in turn improved the air and water quality. Connie engaged other young people in the effort by putting up posters, speaking to youth groups, and doing outreach in her neighborhood. She served as a model and a mentor to the younger participants as they repaired a community garden, built a 1,200-square-foot shade house to host native plant seedlings, and created a strong community of youth activists who cared about community stewardship. “Before working with LEJ, I didn’t even know what environmental justice was. It’s changed me, because now I’m more conscious.” -- Connie Shahid

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