Technology Helps Kids Break Down Borders, Build Networks, and Overcome Social Isolation2 min read
Technology is the proverbial double-edged sword when it comes to our children. It can open vast new worlds of knowledge and discovery for them but also has the potential to lead them down some dark and dangerous digital paths. It’s no secret that the average time kids spend with their mobile devices has skyrocketed in recent years, and unfortunate side effects of this increased usage—such as cyberbullying and social isolation—pose some very real risks.
However, there is a ray of hope shining on the digital landscape that’s helping children and teenagers explore new cultures, build international networks of peers, and challenge themselves as they build new life skills. It’s called Global Scribes, a “for youth, by youth” community that gives children a chance to build relationships around the world. It’s helping to break down borders and build a future where having a close network of friends and colleagues thousands of miles away is the new norm.
Cynthia English is the CEO and co-founder of Global Scribes, whose mission is to empower kids to create a community and shape it according to their vision, helping them learn about other cultures and rid themselves of their vulnerabilities in the process.
Building a Global Community Through Creative Expression
Members of the Global Scribes community build relationships through the universal language of creativity. Every month, the community creates content around a “spark” word designed to foster new ideas and storytelling, which takes the form of a poem or story written both in English and their home language. Community members then create a video of themselves reading or acting out a piece inspired by the same spark word.
Members are encouraged to record a video once or twice a year about the lives they lead. It’s a great way for them to learn more about each other, and helps them realize that lives and cultures vary from New York to Istanbul, and Alaska to Hong Kong—but there are some things we all share in common.
Members also join teams in their areas of interest, with topics covering cooking, fashion, nature, graphic design, broadcasting and more. The community is open to children and young adults aged 8 to 25 who participate as individuals or as part of a school or other approved organization. No adults are allowed inside the community; this helps ensure a safe and secure environment for interaction.
Part of our goal is to have community members experience no fear as their lives take them to another country for work or other reasons. They’ve already built-in a network of friends wherever they go. In an addition, Global Scribes will hold a global summit in the near future where members will be able to physically meet each other and solidify their online relationships.
If you’re interested in networking with friends around the world and you’re between 8 and 25 years old, visit Global Scribes to learn more about the community.