Dr. Bre Gentile, the CEO and founder of Doctor G’s Lab, who holds a PhD, discusses the importance of engaging young people for social change and shares her wisdom about amplifying the voices of youth in the nonprofit sector, emphasizing the need for adults to actively support and collaborate with young people to drive meaningful social change.
Dr. G starts with her thoughts on the significance of youth involvement in social impact initiatives and emphasizes how young people often initiate positive change. She provides examples like Greta Thunberg, who started her climate activism as a teenager, and Sunflower in Thailand, a youth-led organization combating human trafficking. Dr. G’s optimism about the passion, awareness, and open-mindedness of today’s youth will inspire you! She states, “Our youth are thinking, they’re aware, their eyes are open, and they’re caring, and that is hope for me as an adult.”
The conversation covers the role of youth in various social sectors and touches on their desire to be part of meaningful initiatives, and how they are changing the landscape, particularly through the power of social media. Dr. G brings up the importance of creating safe spaces for youth to express themselves and suggests that adults should be more open to sitting with discomfort and uncertainty, mirroring the resilience and determination displayed by young people.
The hosts ask about the influence of social media and technology on youth engagement and activism and Dr. G discusses the challenges and opportunities presented by these platforms, emphasizing the need for careful facilitation and adult guidance.
The fast-paced chat touches on the evolving landscape of higher education, with young people seeking more information and insights into their choices, particularly regarding college and career paths. Dr. G highlights the importance of providing platforms for young individuals to connect with college students and professionals who can offer guidance.
As the interview concludes, the hosts ask about the concept of youth-led initiatives and the challenges they face as they age out of their roles. Dr. G replies how adults can play a crucial role in ensuring the sustainability of youth-led initiatives by offering mentorship and support.