5 Ways: Championing Children: Kern County's Call to Action
Five Empowering Ways to Support our Youth
by Callie Collins
Jun 27, 2024
“Societies are often judged by how they treat their children.” - Kim Ratz, motivational speaker and youth welfare proponent 

July is National Make a Difference to Children Month. Child advocate Kim Ratz proposed the observance in 2006 as an initiative to raise awareness of issues like poverty, child labor, abuse and neglect. Although systemic issues are pervasive and complex, developmental research shows that one consistently caring adult can make a difference in the life of a child. 

Here are five ways to help a local child:
  1. Support children’s causes: Getting involved with what matters to you can happen in ways that are convenient. Be present at community events benefiting Kern County youth. Donate when you can. Advocate on the legislative level by writing to your representatives.  
  2. Volunteer formally: Choose an organization where you can lend your time and talent. Volunteers make the world go round, especially in the nonprofit sector, which covers most organizations in service to children and their families. 
  3. Show up informally: Serve others as a kind neighbor, substitute grandparent or parent helper. Get to know children’s parents or guardians and try to help. Giving back to others is often its own reward.
  4. Be the change: From creating Little Free Libraries to helping children learn to read, every adult has unique talents to share. Identify a problem in your church, school or the greater community. Figure out how to implement a solution. Whether it’s donating material resources to a foster family, tutoring at your neighborhood school or implementing a pantry program, you can play a part in making lives better.
  5. Listen: People of all ages need mentors. If you are not sure how to help, just being willing to listen to youth is enough. Lending an ear is a good first step. 

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