Actress Yara Shahidi hopes to inspire tiny acts of good
Yara Shahidi is an actress. She wants young people to know that it's possible to make a difference in the world. You can do it little by little.
She is the star of Freeform's "Grown-ish." She is one of a group of influencers across the globe. They are taking part in a movement. It is called Little x Little.
There are more than 2 billion people worldwide born between the mid-1990s and mid-2000s. They make up Generation Z.
Little x Little has a goal. It is to inspire as many of those Gen Z'ers as they can. They want them to do 2 billion tiny acts of good. They want to do this by 2030. These acts should be in support of the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals. It is a list of 17 ways to make the world more peaceful, equitable and healthy.
Participants are encouraged to post their own efforts to do good on social media. They should use the tag #LittlexLittle. They should share ideas. The ideas range from reducing meat consumption to ditching the car and biking instead.
It has been two weeks since a "Little x Little" anthem video launched on YouTube. The video explains the project. It's been viewed more than 15 million times.
Shahidi is 18 years old. She says to look no further than this week's student walkout. It was to protest gun violence. And look to the upcoming March for Our Lives rallies. They are examples of young people who are socially engaged. They want to make the world better.
She also says there's a benefit to the abundance of time they spend on their phones.
"Because of our interconnectivity, we see people that aren't directly in front of us and understand there's something greater to contribute to," she said.
Her own personal examples of doing good include contributing money and time to causes within a mile radius of her own home.
Jillian Mercado is a disabled model. She is another influencer taking part. She's posted a video online. She is reminding others that small acts to slow down climate change can add up to a big difference.
"Everybody wants to feel like a superhero in their own way," Mercado said. "With social media we can literally connect with the whole world, have conversations and see that every single person has a voice."