Getting the kids on board

I picked up a message last night while clearing my Facebook inbox from Jon, an old  friend who is now a teacher. He  has also run the fabulous Warwickshire Youth Jazz Orchestra (WYJO) for many, many years and really knows what makes kids tick.  The Head at his school is desperate to find a way of overcoming the ‘charitable apathy’ they are seeing these days amongst youngsters and the school is looking for new ways to get them motivated:

‘These lads respond far better to interesting projects than to the standard requests for charitable giving!’

So, Jon’s wondering if ColaLife can help. Little does he know but, fingers crossed, help may be just around the corner:

In our recent bid for support to UnLtd to develop young people’s  engagement with ColaLife through work in Universities and schools, we said:

1 in 5 developing world children (1.5 million annually) die before age 5, often from treatable causes (diarrhoea, malaria, poor nutrition/sanitation). Poor awareness is compounded by scant local availability of simple, cheap medical and health supplies (eg Oral Rehydration Salts, vitamins). With poorly developed rural transport and distribution systems, it is simply not economically or logistically viable to set up dedicated distribution systems for vital medicines and other social products for remoter places. Yet commercial products get there.

The UK population, meanwhile, have ‘donor fatigue’; the daily death toll from diarrhoea scarcely figures, when we are constantly bombarded by war and disaster appeals. We lose sight of what could be solved or prevented. We risk switching off the interest and creativity of the next generation of designers, thinkers and problem solvers: the social entrepreneurs of the future on a small and finite planet. It is time to share that there are simple ideas, paradigm shifts, ways to do things differently. ColaLife puts that into practice, showing it is possible to create unlikely alliances to alter thinking and action, harnessing changes in corporate responsibility, changes in medical patenting, new media and mobile communications, and ‘carbon footprint’ awareness in transport.

Thanks, Jon, for another bit of real life evidence that we’re on the right track! We will know if we’ve been successful in our bid to UnLtd next week, and the first step will be piloting work in a couple of schools to see where it can enrich the curriculum and turn kids on to what they can do. We really need those resources, UnLtd Judging Panel, so I hope you’re watching!