None of us in this kind of work have the ability to be everything for everyone, or to serve people in all the ways people need help, care, support, information or community by ourselves. So, this #GivingTuesday, we'd like to bring your attention to just a few other organizations besides us (oh, we'll ask you for money for ourselves soon enough, don't you worry!) who we really appreciate who are participating. We're so grateful for them and all that they do. If you're looking for a new place to give some support this week, we suggest you start here:
Unless you live under a very large rock, odds are good you've heard some statistics and research about adolescent minds and neurochemistry and how they are still doing a lot of developing through the early to mid-twenties.
Yes, the adolescent brain makes impulsive behavior more likely. But that doesn't mean that teens and emerging adults don't know what they want, who they are now, or what they're talking about.
For two years, I worked in a bookstore that was aimed primarily at children and teenagers. It was a job I quite enjoyed, but I quickly discovered that when you work near books, people always want to tell you their opinions on said books. That's fine most of the time. But I noticed a pattern when parents or adults would refer to The Hunger Games series. They would express dismay over a child wanting to read the book, wondering what they saw in it, and either implicitly or explicitly stating that they thought the book was not good for youth to be reading.
What struck me about these conversations was that ninety-nine percent of the time, the adult in question had not even read the book they were criticizing. They dismissed it, either as inappropriate trash or as mindless fiction without ever actually seeing what it had to say.
When it comes to financial support, we primarily look to, and need help from, older adults in the world who care about young people, who care about young people's free, unrestricted access to excellent sex education and who do have the economic autonomy and funds to give a little.
This can obviously be a bit tricky. Most of these folks have never used Scarleteen, so it's hard for them to understand its value and what it offers and gives our readers and users.
But! There's something that can help. Here's where you come in, current-Scarleteen-user or now-Scarleteen-alum.
You can tell them. Then they'll know.
UPDATE! We -- and you! -- did it! WE SO TOTALLY DID IT! We met the minimum goal we needed to to avoid a strike and having to shut down any of our services. We can't thank the 1,000+ of you enough who have helped us do this, and who have made it possible for all the young people who need and use our services to keep on using them without interruption.