Meet Gen Z: Youth Helping Youth
By Flora Gonska:
We all have someone older than us who we look up to, at least I hope "we" do. Inevitably, though, you hit a wall called the generation gap. There are some issues that can be worked through and some that will just never quite get ironed out. Youth Helping Youth is an organization committed to connecting youth with opportunities in their area. The idea is simple enough: YHY provides a space where young people can trade work opportunities, skills, and more. Webinars, panels, and other interactive events are helping youth all over Canada! Read on to hear more about Youth Helping Youth and their upcoming projects!
FG: Tell us all about you and your organization!
Founder Anjali Dhaliwal is a philanthropist, entrepreneur, mental health advocate, musician, and senior student at Queen Elizabeth Secondary. Through the Inter-A Leadership Program, she founded the program's first-ever Yearbook Committee 3 years ago, became President of her School Beautification Program, Vice-President of Student Government and was an integral part of fundraising $100,000 for local hospitals. This fall, the Top 25 Under 25 Award Recipient plans to attend Simon Fraser University, studying for a Bachelors's degree in Business Administration.
Youth Helping Youth (YHY) is a student-led, non-profit organization that promotes opportunities for youth in the Lower Mainland. Through social media, word of mouth, connections with local community centres, partnerships with organizations, and our own events, we connect our audience with opportunities to enhance their leadership skills, discover their passions, apply for jobs and volunteer positions, gain real-life experience, find mentorship, and network with like-minded people! The organization itself is a bridge between organizations who want to advertise their own events and students wanting to embrace personal development.
FG: Why do you think it’s important for your generation to let their voices be heard?
Our generation is the future. We are future business owners, doctors, lawyers, and engineers. When our voices are heard, we are able to advocate for a stronger and more sustainable future. By advocating now, we will walk into our future career paths with the same mindset.
FG: Are you optimistic or pessimistic about the future?
Optimistic. I am always a glass half full kinda person.
FG: What are the most important issues facing our world right now? And in the future?
When we talk about the important issues our world is currently facing, there’s no end to that list. Problems arise each day, and at YHY, we hope to prepare our generation with the tools they need to address these problems in a practical manner. Personally, from a youth standpoint, climate change and equal opportunity are huge issues that need to start getting addressed in our society.
FG: What does your organization offer that helps the world be a better place?
At Youth Helping Youth, we hope to inspire the next generation of leaders and changemakers. The ultimate goal is to become a platform where youth feel empowered to take initiative in their own lives. Encouraging youth to build not only these leadership skillsets but also these entrepreneurial mindsets is becoming more and more crucial every day, especially in a day and age when the world is so unpredictable.
FG: Will you be voting in the next election?
Yes, most definitely!
FG: Please tell us all about your current campaigns, projects, and endeavors.
As of right now, we are working on a plethora of projects—the YHY team is constantly growing and producing new opportunities for our audience. Recently, we wrapped up our webinar series on “How to Start Your Own Non-Profit.” It went incredibly well, and we sold over 500 tickets, which came as a pleasant surprise to us. We also wrapped up a few COVID-19 campaigns to support our audience in a time where being there for one another has become increasingly important. We fundraised for local causes, like $10,000 raised to give PPE equipment to senior care workers during the worst of COVID-19. At YHY, we also run our own events like Opportunity Fairs, University Panel Information Sessions, and our latest, a Maintaining Self-Care during COVID-19 session in collaboration with the City of Surrey. Currently, we’re really focusing on growing internal infrastructure and expanding to other nations.
FG: Tell everyone where to find you online and on social platforms.
You never know if you could do it until you try.
A Cleveland, OH, native, Flora Gonska is a non-binary trans woman from a big family. She's a writer, video producer/editor, and artist. An avid supporter of the LGBTQ+ community and equality movement, she has lived in Los Angeles for three years, and she's involved in and enjoys writing on politics, the LGBTQ+ community, and life in the U.S.