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Using social media for community good
Most of us are on social media posting image after image of the goings-in on our lives. More of us are using social media to connect, advocate for, and talk about issues that are important to us.
Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms can be powerful tools to engender awareness and understanding and build relationships and communities. Social media can empower people to be better citizens. Below is a short list of some young people using social to change the world around them.
I started a campaign, called it #FreePeriods and got to work. I started an online petition calling for the government to provide free access to menstrual products for girls from low-income families and launched the campaign on social media. Through social media, the message spread and slowly started to creep into public consciousness, and the initial interest and curiosity about the campaign soon morphed into full-blown media coverage. I was not alone in condemning period poverty. There was widespread disbelief that this was happening in one of the most prosperous, economically advanced nations on Earth. Like me, many thought it completely unacceptable on every level.
In the last few years, social media has increasingly become a space where I am supporting my friends as they go through the highs and lows of life. I enjoy being there for my friends without having to adopt new platforms. I think getting a shoulder to lean on from a friend makes it easier to accept help and support when you are struggling...I don't know if that will change but I am embracing this particular use of social media because it makes me feel like I am making a difference to people that matter to me.
Maka, 22 (Canada)
More young people have started to approach social media as a tool we can use to rectify all that we believe is wrong with the world…I've used my social media channels as a way to ignite meaningful conversations that will inspire positive action. In particular, given that my generation is increasingly visual, I have begun to harness imagery as a tool to define my activism. I engage with some of the issues closest to my heart: Africa, women and youth. I access other creative content out there for my own inspiration. I've articulated my agenda through my voice and imagery on social media, and have used Instagram to engage even further with the causes I care about most…
Amonge, 16 (South Africa)
Amika & Amonge are featured in the recently-launched Facebook Youth portal.
Silence is the mindyourmind Web & Community Developer. He is a newly-minted father (to an amazing boy called Louis), enjoys politics, news and keeping an eye on new technologies.
Find blogs with relevant and up-to-date info about mental health, society and other youth topics; written by a variety of youth and professional contributors.