Today's message is written by Inez Aponte from Crazy Beautiful World (CBW), reminding us that intergenerational collaboration is crucial to our work. We believe CBW is the perfect companion to the Youth Compassion Collaborative (YCC), the Charter's newest youth and youth led initiative fomenting self-compassion and growth opportunities for Youth to feel supported in the compassionate movement in whichever social justice issue they might feel inclined to participate. To learn more about YCC click here.
"Connections between generations are essential for the mental health and stability of a nation." Margaret Mead
Two years ago my then 14 year old son said something that struck me right in the heart. 'Mum, I hate adults. They have made a mess of everything. What does my generation have to look forward to?' I suppose it was the first time that the seriousness of the ecological crisis, or the deepening inequalities and social divisions across the globe, had hit home. He told me he thought adults were cruel and ruthless. 'Kids would never treat each other the ways adults do. All the killing and cheating that you do. It's disgusting.'
Strong words. Unfortunately I found it hard to argue with his observations. I could see that from where he was standing it looked like all adults were making decisions about his generation's future that put profit before human and planetary wellbeing.
'What if, as well as acknowledging the crazy stuff you point out, we also start reminding each other of all the beauty in the world?' I suggested. 'What if there was a way for young people to connect with adults who do have their backs and who are working hard to protect their future? I know loads!'
That's how Crazy Beautiful World was born.
This year, after some delay caused by the global pandemic, we decided to embark on a journey to connect the hopes and dreams of young people with the knowledge and capacity of the older generations. To create spaces where youthful passion and insightfulness meets elder wisdom and patience, and where each is equally valued and listened to.
Psychiatrist and author Daniel Siegel points out that the brains of teenagers are designed to help us course correct, find new ways forward and keep us young.
'[W]ith a new brain comes a new world. Consider this possibility: The reason the human species, for good and for bad, is so adaptive to this planet is because of our adolescence. That is the moment at which everything is cast into doubt and we are fundamentally drawn to innovation and novelty. This can be dangerous for us as individuals, but it's very good for our species as a whole.'
'Neuroscience finds that our brains never stop growing, an idea called neuroplasticity. What spurs that growth and keeps you young? Emotional spark, passion, social engagement, friendships, novelty, and creative outlets. That's the essence of adolescence!'
At Crazy Beautiful World we try to capture the essence of adolescence and start our conversations by asking young people first to share their views. If you are between 13 and 19 we would love to hear your thoughts about what is both crazy and beautiful about the world we live in. Please fill in this short survey, which will feed into our online and face to face programmes and keep in touch via Facebook or Instagram
Let's start talking!
Co-founder of Crazy Beautiful World
This message from Inez Aponte, Co-founder of Crazy Beautiful World, appears in our 07/04/2021 weekly newsletter. To sign up for our newsletter, scroll all the way down to the end of this page to get to the bottom menu, in the newsletter section enter your email address and click on subscribe.