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High School Students Give Back to the Community
During a time when many people are introspective, Generation-Z (those born in the late 1990’s and early 2000s) is taking action. In between home learning classes, high school students throughout the City are channeling an entrepreneurial spirit to meet philanthropic ends. Feeling helpless in the midst of a pandemic, teenagers are anxious to do “something” to give back to the community.
During her second week of home learning, Hope Shinderman, a junior at the private Harvard-Westlake School, decided she was tired of being bored. She wasn’t alone. “I was just so impressed by how well my own teachers were handling the change and felt so thankful that I was able to receive such an amazing education, despite being unable to attend physical school,” Shinderman told the Courier. “However, I know many students aren’t receiving adequate enrichment at this time.”
After hearing from friends that some of their teachers stopped administering the curriculum entirely and others who felt under stimulated by their lack of schoolwork, Shinderman felt a call to action. She and four other classmates at Harvard-Westlake founded Bored of Boredom, a free virtual learning service for students, by students.
Bored of Boredom offers a variety of individual and group enrichment opportunities in both traditional academic and non-academic subjects to those who are receiving minimal to no remote schooling. The organization offers daily 40-minute classes ranging from introductory Mandarin to introductory HTML, geometry and more. “Our volunteers excel in various academic subjects and are dedicated to teaching and helping people,” said Shinderman.
The organization started out with five student tutors. Approximately two months later, Bored of Boredom features a roster of 111 volunteers in the Los Angeles area serving 215 students from both public and private schools. While the majority of students come from the westside of Los Angeles, some hail from as far away as the United Kingdom. “It’s amazing to know that we’re making a difference in people’s lives and helping during these trying times. We’ve also received emails from parents who are first responders and aren’t able to home school their kids who are so grateful for our services. Everyone involved in this program continues to astound me every day,” said Shinderman.
In addition to providing educational resources, Bored of Boredom has raised over $5,000 for charities such as Para Los Ninos and the National Digital Inclusion Alliance to help close the digital divide that many underprivileged students face. The organization will host a benefit concert on June 12 to raise money to support social justice in education. For more information, visit https://www.boredofboredom.org/.
Zoomers to Boomers, a grocery delivery service catering to seniors and others who are immunocompromised, was founded by Daniel Goldberg, a junior at San Marcos High in Santa Barbara. The service is a way for Generation-Z to help Baby Boomers while sheltering at home.
Shortly after launching in March, Mira Kwon, a junior at the Marlborough School, mobilized her cohorts and started the Los Angeles branch. “One of the things that sort of makes us stand out a little bit is that we partner with local grocery stores so that they can prepare the orders beforehand and we can just load them right into our trunk after paying for them,” Kwon told the Courier. “We’re just finding ways to kill two birds with one stone. Supporting small businesses and seniors.”
Zoomers to Boomers has worked with The Beverly Hills Market, among other local establishments. To minimize the risk of contraction, deliveries are left outside each person’s home, requiring no delivery fees or tips.
“One of the things that I’ve been working on is spreading the word,” Eva Rogovin, a junior at the Marlborough School, told the Courier. “I feel like a variety of different approaches so far are working, but I first went around posting flyers around my neighborhood. Just seeing how much really goes into developing a full running service like this, everyone plays a part. It takes a village.”
Zoomers to Boomers now has over 20 different branches in cities across the nation. For more information, visit https://www.zoomerstoboomers.com/.