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Starts with Y

Starts with Y

By Zein Hindawi

On this podcast we start and end with "Y". The Y in "YOUTH" who are making incredible impacts on causes they are passionate about and the Y that represents "WHY" behind their stories.

We hope this podcast sheds light on the importance of thinking about your own "Y" by highlighting stories of remarkable change-makers from across the globe.
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Y a Conversation?

Starts with YJun 11, 2020

Y Education, Arissa?
Jun 10, 202118:12
Y Chalk, Olivia and Eloise?
Jun 03, 202111:40
Y Letters, Eva
May 27, 202108:45
Y Water, Apoorv?
May 20, 202107:33
Y Palestinian Youth, Maysam and Elias?

Y Palestinian Youth, Maysam and Elias?

As per their mission statement, the heart of the Palestinian Youth Movement (PYM) is rooted in justice and liberation. These factors motivate members of this remarkable organization to take an active role in the national struggle for the liberation of Palestine and its people. Maysam and Elias, representatives of the Toronto chapter of PYM join us this week to discuss the ways in which this remarkable grassroots organization is working hard to mobilize Palestinian youth through youth workshops aimed at developing leadership skills and critical analysis, commemorating the Palestinian culture and heritage, developing third world solidarity allies and much more.

In light of the devastating news of what is currently happening Sheikh Jarrah -that has been continuously happening across the country- we thought this educational episode would be incredibly important for our listeners to open their hearts and minds to the people of Palestine.

Y not learn more and support the Palestinian Youth Movement:

May 13, 202125:12
Y Bookmarks, Sarah?

Y Bookmarks, Sarah?

With all the change and uncertainty in the world today, our remarkable guest Sarah continues to spread positivity and joy in the world around her. Her passion and determination to create positive change in the world is ultimately what led her to start the Positive Change Project in 2020. Her website provides ideas on how to spread kindness within ones' own community and also invites folks to send inspirational quotes to her "Bookmark Project" that mails inspirational bookmarks to various charities and organizations to spread love and hope those that need it most.

Y not learn more and support Sarah's initiative:

May 06, 202113:51
Y an Entrepreneurial Spirit, Luke?

Y an Entrepreneurial Spirit, Luke?

16-year-old Luke Mullens was born with an entrepreneurial spirit. His journey is one that involves experiencing failures, discovering strategies, developing resources and connecting with influential people that have helped him become the young entrepreneur he is today. He refers to this journey as his "level up" and wants other young entrepreneurs to experience a "level up", the way he continues to do. It is for this reason that Luke partnered with like-minded individuals to create Rich Kids Global. A platform that helps young people achieve their goals through world class programming all focused on ways to develop an entrepreneurial spirit: from informative book clubs, meetings with young CEO's, educational workshops and so much more.

Y not learn more and support Luke's initiative:

Apr 29, 202114:59
Y Inclusivity, Dean?
Apr 22, 202109:22
Y Entrepreneurship, Ben?
Apr 15, 202113:25
Y Blankets, CJ?

Y Blankets, CJ?

Chris “CJ” Matthews’ inspiring story began when his mom experienced a pregnancy loss when he was five years old. His own grief sparked an idea to create a project to support other kids who might be dealing with similar feelings of sadness. CJ told his mom that he never wanted another kid to feel sad and lonely like he did, and “Blankies 4 My Buddies” was born. Since then, this small project has grown into an organization that brings small tokens of comfort, like cozy blankets, to children dealing with traumatic situations from chronic illnesses to homelessness. CJ is always seeking to come up with creative ideas for helping others and making an impact in the world. He has never found "being a kid" to be a problem. In fact, he believes it to be empowering and just another way to have fun, be happy inside-out, and inspire other teens and kids to use their voices.

Y not learn more and support CJ's initiative:

Apr 08, 202108:04
Y Letters, Natalie?

Y Letters, Natalie?

17-year-old Natalie created Solely Sunshine, an international mental health organization focused on "sprinkling sunshine" by mailing letters of positivity and hope. Through her website, anyone (no matter where you are from or how old you are) is able to write free inspirational letters and words of hope and wisdom that are later transcribed to paper by her team of over 100 teen volunteers. These letters are then mailed to mental health facilities to instil a sense of peace and reassurance. To date, Natalie has received letters from 50 different countries, sent over 6,000 letter and has impacted over 10,000 people.

Y not learn more and support Natalie's initiative:

Apr 01, 202113:18
Y Women Empowerment, Katelyn?
Mar 25, 202113:46
Y a Conversation, Eira?

Y a Conversation, Eira?

PERIOD works to eradicate period poverty and stigma through their three pillars of service, education and advocacy. This week, we are joined by PERIOD's National Chapter Manager, Eira Nylander Torallas to discuss the incredible work PERIOD continues to do by providing product to menstruators in need, train and equip youth with resources and information, and fighting to ensure equity and access to menstrual products in institutions large and small. They elevate and support the grassroots work of their 400+ PERIOD Chapters (in 43 US States and 35 countries) alongside other menstrual equity activists and organizations in order to change the conversation surrounding periods and advocate for policy change to advance menstrual equality in their communities.

Y not learn more and support the PERIOD movement:

Mar 18, 202114:11
Y Recycling, Ryan?

Y Recycling, Ryan?

At the age of 3, our guest this week watched a video of a turtle being harmed by plastic in the ocean and decided he wanted to make a difference to better protect the ocean, the turtles and the planet. Today, at 11 years of age, young Ryan is the CEO, manager and employee of Ryan’s Recycling Company. He spends a part of every week sorting through cans and bottles from his customers and getting them ready to take to the recycling centers and has recycled 1.3 million bottles and cans from hundreds of customers. For Ryan, the passion to protect our planet and recycle comes from an understanding that more bottles and cans recycled means fewer bottles and cans in the ocean!

Y not learn more and support Ryan's initiative:

Mar 11, 202112:24
Y Grey Water, Shreya?

Y Grey Water, Shreya?

Shreya Ramachandran is the founder of the nonprofit organization The Grey Water Project which promotes the safe reuse of grey water and water conservation as a way to battle droughts and climate change. (Grey water is lightly used water that makes up 60% of the used water in our homes). She was moved to action five years ago after witnessing the devastating effects of droughts firsthand in both California and India. She started out by doing research to see if grey water could be reused for irrigation. After winning state, national and international awards for her patent-pending research, she started her nonprofit to advocate her cause.

Currently, she does workshops and presentations at schools, libraries, community and corporate events to teach people how to use grey water in their homes and how to install a laundry to lawn system. She also runs water conservation challenges and has a grey water curriculum implemented aimed at school students to teach greywater recycling. “My goal is to have grey water reuse become like paper and plastic recycling - something everyone does,” Shreya says. She is launching a Climate Ambassadors Program for students to learn about climate change, implement a change project and receive recognition.

Shreya has won numerous awards including being a Top 20 Global Finalist at the Google Science Fair and 3rd place at the International Science and Engineering Fair. She is a National Geographic Young Explorer, Global Teen Leader, a recipient of the President’s Environmental Youth Award, the Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes and the winner of the Children’s Climate Prize 2019.

Y not learn more and support Sherya's initiative:

Mar 04, 202115:24
Y Bloopers, Lauren and Zein?

Y Bloopers, Lauren and Zein?

We all know the famous saying that “laughter is the best medicine". Here at Starts with Y, we hold that thought close to our hearts as we have seen the way laughter has brought people together on this platform. We have also learnt about the ways in which laughter triggers healthy physical and emotional changes in the body. We have had the pleasure of connecting with young experts who have explained the ways in which laughter boosts the immune system and triggers the release of pleasure-inducing neurochemicals in our brain. It is for this reason that we wanted to end our incredible season two with “Y Bloopers, Zein and Lauren” ... a final episode filled with a great deal of love, gratitude and laughter.

Dec 16, 202004:05
Y Ethical Clothing, Everett?

Y Ethical Clothing, Everett?

Everett Thorn created the clothing brand "Carbon Oil and Coil" in hopes of protecting our planet and environment. Proceeds from every purchase made through this sustainable clothing brand is donated to "Choose Today Carbon Capture"  that supports various carbon sequestration projects focused on fighting against climate change. Everett firmly believes that we should be pushing for a world that focuses more on ethical clothing, as it can be stylish and affordable (whilst standing behind great causes) ... and he hopes this clothing brand is doing just that!

Y not support and learn more about Everett: 

Dec 09, 202017:02
Y Youth Empowerment, Cassidy?

Y Youth Empowerment, Cassidy?

<strong>Cassidy Murray founded Changemaker Odyssey alongside her sister Kaitlin in hopes of creating a global youth-led educational platform that provides young people with the tools to transform their lives and make a positive impact in the world. The goal of Changemaker Odyssey is to create a movement of young people empowered to enrich their lives and push humanity forward. They do this by providing service-learning resources (from webinars, books, videos, coaching and much more), all geared towards supporting change-making youth make meaningful impacts in the world around them.<br />
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Y not learn more and support Cassidy:<br /></strong>
Dec 03, 202017:58
Y Cookies, Dana?
Nov 26, 202012:25
Y Sanitary Products, Ziyaan?

Y Sanitary Products, Ziyaan?

“For the Menstruator” (previously know as Accessible and Affordable Sanitation for Women or AASW) was founded by Ziyaan Virji at only 15 years of age. The initiative stemmed from Ziyaan learning about the struggles his mother faced in finding comfort in menstruating as a child. After watching documentaries such as “India’s Menstruation Man” and further educating himself on this topic,  Ziyaan began producing and distributing reusable sanitary packages to equip girls with necessary skills, knowledge and confidence to better understand the process of menstruation. His goal is to provide over 10,000 girls with access to sanitation in the next year.

Y not learn more and support Ziyaan:

Nov 19, 202021:32
Y Cards, Nicole?

Y Cards, Nicole?

Our incredible guest Nicole created her business CuteRoots with a simple goal in mind “to put smiles on faces, and flowers in the ground.” Nicole wanted to ensure she was standing behind an eco-friendly, impact-focused business and ensured all of her greeting cards (including the envelops) were made from 100% recycled paper. Her punny and incredibly well-designed cards are all embedded with wildflower seeds which means they can all be planted and her “impact line” of greeting cards focus on supporting various organization from the Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund, the loveland foundation and many more.

Y not learn more and support Nicole:

Nov 12, 202017:43
Y Ballet, Alyssia?

Y Ballet, Alyssia?

13-year-old Alyssia Duda launched her non-profit, Alyssia’s Dream, in hopes ensuring ballet and the arts are accessible at all youth regardless of age, race or gender. In a recent interview with the Chicago Tribune, Alyssia shared that “often times in ballet class, students of colour, especially black girls, are the only black student in the class." Being the only black dancer in some of her own ballet classes, Alyssia's goal is to ensure all youth are provided with the same opportunity to experience the power of dance, regardless of the colour of their skin.

Y not learn more and support Alyssia:

Nov 05, 202009:59
Y Mentorship, Jameson?
Oct 29, 202013:57
Y a Book, Kate?

Y a Book, Kate?

Following a trip to South Africa and learning about the threats facing wildlife during a safari,  8-years-old Kate was determined to do something to help the animals who were being harmed by humans and knew she had to also educate young people about this issue. It is for this reason that Kate wrote "Lets go on Safari". A book that provides examples of small-scale, achievable animal advocacy projects that kids can initiate. Profits of the book go to organizations devoted to wildlife conservation, such as the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, Jane Goodall Institute and Global Wildlife Conservation.

Y not learn more and support Kate:

Oct 22, 202010:57
Y Websites, Marina?

Y Websites, Marina?

As a daughter of Mexican immigrants, 17-year-old Marina is proud of her heritage and culture and has grown up taking advantage of the resources and knowledge she’s gained through her unique experiences. It is for this reason that she created her website "Culture of Change" as she wanted to create a safe online space that allows youth of all ages to educate themselves on various topics including the US justice system, the crisis in Yemen, the act of protesting and so much more. Marina firmly believes that everyone has the power to grow their mindset hopes her website is able to provide information that offers different perspectives that will open minds and hearts.

Y not learn more and support Marina:

Oct 15, 202016:00
Y Inventions, Gitanjali?

Y Inventions, Gitanjali?

At only 11 years of age Gitanjali was named America’s Top Young Scientist of 2017 with a device to detect lead in water faster than any other current techniques. She has created several other inventions including "Kindly" an artificial intelligence service to detect and stop cyber bullying as well as a snake bite detector tool that measures the severity and type of venom injected during a snake bite using thermography. Gitanjali actively combines science and kindness as a catalyst for social change and to make a difference and hopes to continue to make positive impacts in the world... one innovative invention at a time.

Y not learn more and support Gitanjali:

Oct 08, 202020:03
Y Frogs, Justin?

Y Frogs, Justin?

9-year-old Justin began his journey in kindergarten when he learned that one-third of frog species are on the verge of extinction. As he continued to research more about frogs and their incredible impact to our ecosystem as well as the importance of protecting these beautiful species, he set a goal for himself to conserve 30% of the planet by 2030. He hopes to make the planet safer by promoting the idea of plastic reduction to better our planet and our water quality for the frogs and beyond.

Y not learn more and support Justin:

Oct 01, 202010:52
Y Benches, Sammie?

Y Benches, Sammie?

Sammie came across her first “buddy bench” at only 8-years-old. The idea had a profound impact on her, as sitting on a “buddy bench” is a nonverbal way of asking for a friend. Sammie knew she needed to bring this idea to her community so she began creating "Sammie's Buddy Bench". Her goal is to not only ensure youth across the globe have access to a buddy bench, but she also creates these 6ft benches in the most environmentally friendly manner as each bench is solely made of 200 lbs. of plastic caps and lids.

Y not learn more and support Sammie:

Sep 24, 202016:08
Y Backpacks, Blerina?
Sep 17, 202018:38
Y Bloopers?

Y Bloopers?

According to “Affinity Numerology” the number 24 represents strength, compassion and long-term security. 3 words that perfectly sum up what the past 24 episodes of Starts with Y have felt like.

This platform has become an outlet that continues to instill a sense of hope within us that the world is in good hands as the next generation of youth are made up of strong and compassionate leaders who are already fighting for meaningful change and long-term security to ensure our world is one that is inclusive, kind, safe and peaceful.

We hope you enjoy this "Season Finale" blooper reel episode as much as we do! See you all back for more laughs, incredible new “Y” words and even MORE stories of remarkable change-makers for Season 2 of Starts with Y.

Sep 03, 202006:16
Y Linens?
Aug 27, 202017:32
Y your Heritage?
Aug 20, 202018:46
Y your Birthday?
Aug 13, 202016:45
Y a Parade?
Aug 06, 202016:17
Y Happiness?

Y Happiness?

High school students Nakshh and Apoorvi created The Happiness Project in hopes of implementing mental health programming in government and aided schools across India. By conducting surveys, connecting with psychologists and training educators, the organization creates customized workshops for each school based on what is most needed to support the student body. Their goal is to ensure mental health no longer remains a taboo subject throughout the education system in India and hope they are able to support youth on their journey to live happier lives.

Y not learn more about Apoorvi and Nakshh's story:

Jul 30, 202014:39
Y a Field?
Jul 23, 202018:08
Y a Video?
Jul 16, 202016:30
Y Seeds?
Jul 09, 202015:39
Y a Mirror?
Jul 02, 202016:45
Y a Spark?

Y a Spark?

Rochelle is co-founder of SPARK Foundation, a non-profit organization that offers educational services focused on mentorship, entrepreneurship and service-learning. This idea came to Rochelle 7 years ago, after realizing the dire need for workshops, camps and educational resources geared towards supporting change-making youth interested in making impacts but needing the resources and support to get their incredible ideas going. Rochelle's dedication to supporting youth within her community has been widely recognized, as she has been named "Top 25 Under 25 by the Surrey Board of Trade", she was nominated for the YWCA Women of Distinction award and was awarded the Governor General Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers.

Y not learn more about Rochelle's story?

Jun 25, 202016:10
Y a Basket?
Jun 18, 202013:42
Y a Conversation?
Jun 11, 202016:30
Y your Country?
Jun 04, 202016:04
Y your Friends?
May 28, 202014:44
Y Labels?
May 21, 202015:00
Y your Voice?
May 14, 202013:31
Y Clothing?
May 07, 202014:13
Y your Heart?
Apr 30, 202014:31
Y a Sign?
Apr 23, 202014:30
Y Art?
Apr 16, 202013:34