Kindraising the Stakes

Today I want to spotlight a Toronto-area student who’s already got herself a full-time career. Here’s what I assume Hannah Alper’s resume looks like. Job title: Eco-warrior. Special interest: Saving the environment. Activities: Motivational speaking, repping organizations like Me to We and Free the Children, spearheading Earth Hour activities, giving media interviews, and passionately blogging to raise awareness. She’s even served in her school parliament.

Unbelievably, Hannah is only 12. At this rate, by the time she’s 20, she’ll have the rainforests repopulated, the ozone layer repaired and the oceans fully restored to their natural equilibrium.

Child activists are inspiring because they’re earnest, and focused. They’re exceedingly fair-minded and will go to great lengths to defend an underdog – in this case, poor old battered Mother Earth. And because they’re kids, they brim over with seemingly limitless energy. It means they get a lot of meaningful stuff done.

Hannah has invented a word for what she and other good-hearted children do. She calls it kindraising. Unlike fundraising, it doesn’t involve throwing money at a problem and imagining it will go away. Rather, it involves throwing acts of kindness at a problem, maybe even love and hugs, and waiting around to see what sticks.

You can learn more about Hannah, her work and her ideas here. And if and when kindness comes flying your way… take it from me, don’t duck.

It’s not all glamour. In her off hours – although I can’t imagine she has many of them – Hannah isn’t afraid to get her hands dirty. Here she is, picking up trash like a trouper. (Photo courtesy of the Alper family)

It’s not all glamour. In her off hours – although I can’t imagine she has many of them – Hannah isn’t afraid to get her hands dirty. Here she is, picking up trash like a trouper. (Photo courtesy of the Alper family)

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