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Idealists in Action | May 15, 2020

Lizzy Cooke profile image

Lizzy Cooke

Idealists in Action #03 | Prom on their terms 💪🏽
Planning a virtual prom for the country, a quaran-teen music competition & more
Weekly roundup of people banding together and opportunities to make a difference.

Hi there,

We’ve asked young people to give up a lot in the name of social distancing. They’ve missed milestones like graduation and prom, interrupted college to move back home, and faced more job losses than any other group. But you know what? They’ve responded to all this adversity in really inspiring, generous ways. 

Whether they’re going on shopping trips for the elderly or translating health information into different languages through song and dance, young people everywhere are stepping up. So this issue’s dedicated to all the young people banding together to take action. Thank you for your activism, and thank you for your resilience 💪

Waving from NYC,



Esandi founded Strings4Smiles, which provides music education and instruments to underserved
students. She helped plan a virtual concert for healthcare workers!

"Our Quaran-Teen competition was in effort for our youth to come together and thank first responders, essential workers, and healthcare workers for the paramount work they have been doing....It is a beautiful thing when people can come together in the midst of panic and create melodious music together."

Jordan teaches senior citizens how to use technology so they can fight loneliness and stay connected to the world.

“Especially during a time like this, seniors need the ability to shop online, FaceTime their grandchildren, and entertain themselves by playing online games and watching videos on YouTube. The reactions of the seniors after every lesson is absolutely remarkable and makes all the work that I put into this class completely worth it!”

Destiny works Wide Angle Youth Media, which provides Baltimore youth and communities with the media education resources to represent themselves. She helped plan a virtual prom! 

VIP (Virtual Iconic Prom) 2020 was an event for the entire community. We had students dancing in a private Zoom joined by parents, teachers and community members, with everyone on their feet and dancing for four hours straight and watching the live stream”

​​​​​​Photos of the Virtual Iconic Prom

1.  Donate to mutual aid groups run by the youth, for the youth, like the STAY Together Appalachian Youth Project.

2.  Follow their lead! Six Feet Supplies, a grocery delivery service run by students in LA, provides a toolkit to start a branch and get things going in your very own community. 

3.  Explore full-time jobs that empower young people, like Chapter Organizer at Youth United for Change, or Program Coordinator at the International Youth Foundation. 

4.  Spread the word! If you see someone doing great work, share it on social media so it reaches more people. Every tweet, comment and Instagram follower makes a difference. 


Casa Latina is hiring a Development Operations Associate in Seattle, WA. 

Dangerous Speech Project is hiring a Communications Consultant in Washington, DC.

The Asian American Arts Alliance is hiring a Public Engagement and Communications Manager in Brooklyn, NY. 

Mental Health America is hiring a Program Associate in Alexandria, VA.

Black Girls Code is hiring an Operations/Office Manager to work in New York, NY or remotely. a whole lot more! Start your own search at 

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Lizzy Cooke profile image

Lizzy Cooke

Lizzy Cooke is the editor of the Idealists in Action newsletter. She also builds the Idealist community through social media and marketing. Outside of work you can find her reading, running, or walking dogs for her local animal shelter in Brooklyn.