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Posted on: July 1, 2018

Developmental Asset of the Month - July 2018

7 July Equality and Social Justice

Tips to Help You Implement Asset #27: Equality and Social Justice

  • Discuss with your youth and give your opinion about different equality and social justice topics such as: racial, gender, disability, sexual orientation, class and age discrimination, poverty, hunger, or human rights.
  • Promote tolerance and acceptance.
  • Advocate for people with disability.
  • Support candidates who take a stand on equality and social justice.
  • Let your words and actions show that you care about those who suffer.

As we watch the images on television of people suffering from terrible injustice, the pictures may stir something within us. But that stirring can easily be lost once we turn off the television and walk away. Kids who are concerned about equality and reducing hunger and poverty may or may not know what life is like for those who suffer from these conditions, but they do discover that it’s a good idea to care for people - all people. They care about people they don’t know, who live a world away and who may have many critical needs. They want to do something to make the world a better place. Trevor Ferrell was 11 years old when he saw a news story about homeless people. That evening, he begged his parents to drive him to downtown Philadelphia to hand out blankets and pillows to people with no homes to go to. The next night, he and his family delivered hot food to people in the same neighbor-hood. By the time he was 16, he and his family had opened a 33-room shelter called “Trevor’s Place,” where homeless people could stay for a short time before eventually finding jobs and moving on to permanent housing. “One person can make a difference,” Ferrell says. “Just do what you can and follow your heart.”

Time Together: Three ways your family can focus on quality and social justice:

  1. As a family, discuss your views about equality and social justice. Choose one cause to follow and help.
  2. Together write a letter to the editor about a social issue that concerns you.
  3. If you have experienced hardships such as being poor or going without food, tell your story. People will listen to those who speak from experience.

Talk Together: Questions to discuss with your child:

  1. How do you feel when you are treated unfairly by others? Why?
  2. Which injustices in the world bother you most? Why?
  3. What can our family do about injustice hunger, and poverty?

Questions to Ask: One way to promote equality and social justice is by giving your time, money, or talent to an organization that seeks to reduce hunger, poverty, and injustice. Before you do, however, Louis L. Knowles, author of Guide to World Hunger Organizations, suggests you find out the answers to these questions: 

  1. What’s the organization’s purpose?
  2. What type of action does the organization do?
  3. Who’s in charge?
  4. How does the organization relate to people in need?
  5. Where does the organization’s money come from?
  6. Where does the organization’s money go?
  7. Who decides which justice projects to do?

More Help for Parents: The Kids’ Guide to Social Action: How to Solve the Social Problems You Choose—and turn creative thinking into Positive Action by Barbara A. Lewis shows involved kids how to get results for their cause. (Published by Free Spirit)

Final Word:
“When one helps another, both gain strength.”
—Ecuadorian proverb


About the Asset-a-Month Program: This article was provided courtesy of Project Cornerstone’s Asset-a-Month program. The goals of the Silicon Valley Asset-a-Month program are to help align adults throughout our diverse community in their efforts to promote positive youth development by fostering developmental assets. Visit the Developmental-Asset-a-Month Calendar for more tips. For more information about the Asset-a-Month program, contact Project Cornerstone at (408) 351-6482 or info@projectcornerstone.org.

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