Today's Youth: There's Hope for the Future

Connie McKinney By Connie McKinney, 27th Jun 2013 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Family>Teenagers

We hear so much about how the next generation is spoiled, self-absorbed and demanding.
However, from what I've seen, there are a lot of caring, compassionate youth out there. Here's just a fraction of some of the good deeds I've witnessed young people doing recently.

Thinking of Others First

A young woman with disabilities stopped at a local McDonald's restaurant for lunch recently. She handed the clerk a five-dollar bill but the clerk said she still owed 20 cents. She reached for her change purse but discovered it was empty. Just then, a teen-age boy came to her rescue by plunking down a quarter on the counter.
This young man is the antithesis of what many people think is the typical teenager of today. Teens and young people in their 20s are supposed to be selfish, self-absorbed and egotistical. They were raised by the so-called "helicopter parents" who constantly hovered around them and made them feel like the universe revolved around them. But I think the young man at the McDonald's and thousands of other youths are disproving this myth every day. They are constantly thinking of others first.

Hardworking Volunteers

Many young people today put in hours of work for no pay except the satisfaction of helping others. They pound nails, hang dry wall and paint rooms while building houses for Habitat for Humanity. Every summer, my church's youth group sends several teens to West Virginia where they spend a week volunteering to fix substandard housing for the poor. Some other teens plus a few adult chaperons from my church will travel to Haiti this summer and teach children there how to play baseball. Some of the same teens who will visit Haiti and West Virginia this summer are now growing a garden on the parish grounds. Their harvest will be shared with a local food pantry.
Nearly two years ago, a devastating flood struck my section of Upstate New York, damaging or destroying thousands of houses. Local youths sprang into action. In some cases, the entire roster of the school's football team helped clean up after the floods. They spent their weekends shoveling mud out of basements, carrying flood-damaged items to the curb and ripping out floorboards. Talk about dirty work. But I never heard anyone complain about their mud-spattered t-shirts and jeans.
Their compassion doesn't end when they leave high school. Many young people volunteer through their colleges. Instead of flying to Florida or Mexico for Spring Break, many college students head for places such as Haiti where they will spend their week off volunteering. Numerous high school and college students have headed south where they helped rebuild New Orleans after the devastating Hurricane Katrina struck several years ago.

Never Too Busy to Volunteer

Last weekend, my neighbor's granddaughter graduated as the salutatorian of her local high school. She ranked second in a class of nearly 400 students. What few people realize is that she raised money every year for the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life. This is a young woman who took challenging honors and AP courses, played in her school's concert and symphony bands and spent time with her friends like any other teenager. Yet she always made the time to volunteer for the relay.
Young people like her inspire me. Maybe they will indeed change the world and make it a better place. They definitely give me hope for the future.


Teenage, Teenager, Teenagers, Teens, Volunteer, Volunteer Work, Volunteering, Volunteers, Young Adult, Young Adults, Young People, Youth

Meet the author

author avatar Connie McKinney
I enjoy exercising, pets, and volunteering as well as writing about these topics and others.

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
29th Jun 2013 (#)


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author avatar cnwriter..carolina
29th Jun 2013 (#)

yes! there are some wonderful young people around who will stand up for what is right...

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author avatar Delicia Powers
30th Jun 2013 (#)

Very good to read and thank you Connie...!

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