Blog

temp-post-image

The abrupt transition to remote learning that has accompanied the Covid crisis is the single biggest change facing many parents and teachers as the traditional back-to-school season unfolds this year. And sadly, the strictures of remote learning are much more likely to have a negative impact on children in poverty, threatening to intensify the already glaring disparities between rich and poor students.

But as Devorah Heitner points out, there are solutions within reach. And although Heitner, the author of Screenwise: Helping Kids Thrive (and Survive) in Their Digital World, is cautious in her optimism, she also sees this crisis as an opportunity to reimagine our schools.

Read Heitner's thoug...

Read more

temp-post-image

Finding care for young children suffering from ADHD, anxiety and other common issues can often be a difficult process. Naomi Allen knows firsthand just how hard it can be, having struggled with finding therapy for her five-year-old son. “It was just a black box,” she says.

Now thanks to Allen, there's literally an app for that. Spurred on by her experience, Allen co-founded Palo Alto, California-based Brightline to bridge the gap, and provide families with a virtual behavioral health solution. The Brightline app provides a portal through which children can meet with clinicians to work on problems including ADHD, anxiety, depression, disruptive behavior and more. And this week, the...

Read more

temp-post-image

When Tarrant Cross Child was suicidal and fighting addiction, running was his lifeline, making a critical difference when he had nothing else to reach for. Afraid of losing everything, Cross Child, who is Blackfoot from the southern Alberta Blood Tribe of Saskatchewan, used running as therapy to recover.

Today Cross Child works to bring that inspiration to kids in similar trouble, through his Prairie Run Crew Outreach Program. There is a serious youth suicide crisis among indigenous young people in Saskatchewan, and he is determined to make a difference. “I want these kids to experience a victory, something good,” Cross Child explains. “Something positive in their life that ...

Read more

temp-post-image

We're at our most impressionable as children, and the things we see tend to hit harder, and stay with us longer. When Judeah Reynolds watched the police officer grind his knee into George Floyd’s neck this past Memorial Day, her life was forever changed. Her cousin, Darnella Frazier, recorded the incident on her cell phone, and when she posted it to social media, the entire world took notice.

Judeah's experience transformed her--and she decided to tell her story. "A Walk To The Store," young Judeah's chronicle of the events of that day, will be a picture book about a little girl "who witnessed something unspeakable and found her voice."

The children's book is set to be published by Beave...

Read more

temp-post-image

As 2016 came to a close, Tani Adewumi was just five years old, and living in Abuja, the capital of Nigeria. He and his family lived in a constant state of fear because the terrorist group Boko Harum was very active there; they endured harrowing attacks that eventually forced them to flee the country, their homeland.

The family ended up in a homeless shelter in Manhattan, a desolate berth after such a difficult journey. But it was in New York that young Tani would find something that would change his family's life forever: chess. Today, Tani is a 9-year-old chess phenomenon who has appeared on the Today Show and across the talk show circuit. And unbelievably, he recently moved his family into ...

Read more

temp-post-image

For the last eight years, TotalLink2 Community has worked with young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, offering a wide range of services promoting employment, independence and durable social connections. They also provide career and vocational services, including support with skill development and job placement. Based in Northbrook, Illinois, the organization's mission is to enhance their community by providing opportunities for these citizens to grow and contribute through social connection, employment and life-long education.

Sadly, the Covid pandemic has put much of this vital organization's regular programming on hold--and like many of us, they've had to pivot to th...

Read more

temp-post-image

A summer youth camp for disabled kids that operated in upstate New York starting in the 1950's, Camp Jened was a refuge for an entire generation of special needs kids. Run by a group of what were then called hippies, the camp gave disabled kids a chance to experience all the things a "normal" kid would in summer camp.

But Camp Jened wasn't just the source of a lot of treasured memories. It also proved to be the wellspring of a landmark piece of legislation: the Americans with Civil Disabilities Act. And now, the camp has been immortalized in Crip Camp, a fascinating documentary now airing on Netflix.

A former camper himself, James Lebrecht directed the film with Nicole Newnham, with Michelle a...

Read more

temp-post-image

When Felecia Gaston founded Performing Stars of Marin in 1990, a nonprofit art academy serving the underprivileged, she began with no budget whatsoever. “I had no idea about fundraising, writing grants, doing all the networking, filling out the 501(c)(3)s,” Gaston says.

Fast-forward 30 years, and today more than 3,000 young people have attended the program--and many have gone on to achieve at a level they never thought possible. By making classes, scholarships and other assistance accessible to families unable to afford performing arts programs, Gaston opened up a new world to kids who otherwise may have never had the chance to participate in the arts.

One excellent example is John...

Read more

temp-post-image

Most of us would be hard-pressed to remember what we were doing when we were four years old. Not Mikaila Ulmer: she was starting her own small business. After an unlikely inspiration--being stung by a bee--Mikaila had come to realize the vital role that bees play in the ecosystem. And almost eleven years later, her business, Me & The Bees Lemonade, has grown into a huge success.

Selling flaxseed lemonade sweetened with local honey (her grandmother's recipe), Mikaila donates a percentage of her profits to organizations fighting to save honeybees. And after introducing her lemonade on “Shark Tank”, Mikaila was able to secure a $60,000 investment to continue to grow her enterprise. T...

Read more

temp-post-image

When it comes to public policy, there are some issues that tend to be portrayed as permanent, systemic, just "part of the landscape". Poverty often seems to be one of these, sadly. But this of course is an illusion: like all social conditions, poverty is the result of specific choices made by governments, businesses and other powerful institutions.

There may be no better illustration of this point than the story being told in Canada right now. In 2016, the Canadian government began giving parents a small amount of money — a few hundred dollars a month — to help subsidize the costs of child raising. The amounts are very modest, but the results have been enormous: in just one year, ...

Read more