The newest generation called Generation Z, born between 1995 and 2012, has already transformed into Generation Zen. These young people are the future and they plan to make the world a better place.
Dr. Gloria Horsley, founder of the Open to Hope Foundation, said, “This generation has been exposed to many issues at an early age, including terrorism, school violence and global conflict. From my perspective, all of this has taught them to be able to adapt more easily to situations, be more resilient and have more of an interest in social change.”
While other generations have attempted to change the world, these youngsters are hitting the ground running. Just look at Greta Thunberg, a Swedish 16-year-old, who is leading a global protest against climate change. A study by Vision Critical found that 60% of the new generation want to change the world.
Climate change is a pressing matter that no one can ignore. United Nations released a lengthy report earlier this year stating that over a million species are in danger of going extinct. Polar bears are starving, the Amazon Rainforest is burning and change needs to happen.
Generation Zen is taking part by rallying for change, being more eco-friendly and choosing to prioritize the environment. As the common saying goes, ‘There is no Planet B’.
Young people are constantly on their phones, but they are actually putting them to good use. While they spend hours on social media, many are engaging in meaningful interactions. How they define success is different from other generations. They place value on a better work-life balance and doing something meaningful for a career.
The estimated 2.52 billion youngsters that make up the generation are also focused on giving to charities and volunteering. A survey conducted by USAWillGuru.com on 3,000 18-24 year olds found that 65% would leave part of their estates to charities. Even more specific, 34% said they would donate to organizations that fight climate change, to help preserve the earth for future generations.
An interactive map was created from the results that breaks down the results by state.
Giving back is important to this generation and they do that by volunteering their time to causes that matter to them. Horsley has personally witnessed how the generation can impact a nonprofit. “Their energy and ideas are infectious and often help us see an issue differently.” Not to mention, that they are digital experts, thanks to all the times they spend on their phones.
They want to help, so organizations are encouraged to embrace the age difference and keep an open mind to their ideas. Together, we can make a difference.
Andrea Powell is an animal enthusiast that resides in West Michigan. When not writing, she is exploring the great outdoors with her dogs and horses.