Many of us look in the mirror and see an ordinary person gazing right back at us. We go about our daily routine as best as we can; we might even throw in a coffee here an there to amp-up our efforts. What most people are unaware of is the power a single human has to make a positive difference in this world. While most of us are debating whether or not to pay that extra two dollars for the vanilla latte or to stick with the cheaper amricano; there are young talented minds out there who are transforming the world into a better place to live.
These young and motivated people have focused their efforts towards helping others, on top of going about their daily routines. Popular Everything has compiled a list of these remarkable yougins ranging from as young as age three to age nineteen. Their motivation and success will totally inspire you.
Ryan McGuire | Age: 6
This six-year-old, Massachusetts boy, fights like a man- against cancer that is! At a remarkably young age, Ryan was able to raise $25,000 for the non-profit organization “Golf Fights Cancer.” His determination to this raise money resulted from the unfortunate passing of his classmate, who was battling with cancer. Ryan decided he wanted to raise money to help find a cure for cancer and prevent what happened to his friend from happening to other children.
Malala Yousafzai | Age: 11
Malala Yousafzai’s voice is one that is strongly heard across the globe. From a young age, Malala took on a powerful love of learning. When her hometown was invaded by Taliban Militants, the education of females was prohibited. Malala’s voice was first heard when she was 11 years old. She began to describe her experiences under Taliban rule for the BBC blog, using a fake name to protect her identity. Although the Taliban eventually retreated from her home town, Malala continued to advocate and campaign for women’s rights to an education. Angered by her protest, a Taliban member boarded her school bus, identified her and shot her in the head. Malala survived the severe head wounds. She admits to the fear of another retaliation for speaking out against the Taliban, however this fear has not weakened her motivation to continue. Her determination lead her to win Pakistan’s first National Nobel Peace Prize.
Lilly Diuble | Age: 11
Lilly was born with Usher Syndrome, a rare disease that causes deafness and blindness. As the deterioration of her senses progressed, this 11-year-old girl remained strong. She was able to raise $150,000 for the Foundation Fighting Blindness, which would use this money for research in hopes of finding a cure. Today she inspires children with the same disease as well everyone else who has heard of her optimism and fight.
Iqbal Masih | Age: 12
Iqbal Masih, like millions of other children in Pakistan, was forced to work as a slave to pay back his family’s debts. The abuse and poor living conditions that Masih suffered, lead him to attempt escape. His efforts failed when government forces preferred receiving a finder’s fee rather than fighting for his freedom. At the age of 12, Masih was able to escape and attend a freedom day celebration held by the Bricklayer Union. Here Masih learned about the illegality of debt slavery. In front of hundreds, he spoke about his experience. His words inspired the crowd and got the attention of a Union Leader who was able to free Maish as well as the other slaves who were held captive with him. This 12 year old boy used his freedom to help free others. He became the voice of the enslaved in Pakistan; giving speeches all over the country, and freeing kids just like him. The attention he gained caused him to become a target for factory owners who ran on the backs of slaves. Masih’s life was taken by one of these enemies. His memory and great impact on the lives of millions will forever live on and inspire.
Austin Gutwein | Age: 9
Austin Gutwein is living proof that no matter what age a person is or what skills a person has, anyone can make a difference. As young as nine years old, Austin’s family donated money to support a young girl, Maggie, with a heartbreaking story. Maggie’s parents passed away from AIDS and she was living in poverty with her grandmother in Zambia. Austin decided he had to do something to help the other children who were in the same situation as Maggie. He started his foundation called Hoops Of Hope. At his first fundraising event, Austin threw 2,057 free throws to raise awareness and funds for the cause. In just one day, he raised about $3,000. Today his organization is still up-and-running and has raised over 1 Million dollars. With this money he provides food, clothing, shelter, a new school, medical clinic and several dormitories for kids in Zambia.
Adele Taylor | Age: 13
Like many children, Adele developed a love of books. Hearing about how kids across the world were not fortunate enough to have a library of books in their homes inspired her to start an organization that would provide as many books as possible to libraries across America. She named her organization “Adele’s Literacy Library.” At the age of 13, this young lady was able to distribute thousands of books, allowing kids with a similar love of reading to enjoy a wide variety of literature.
Yasha Gupta | Age: 14
Yasha Gupta has needed glasses for as long as he can remember. The day this 14 year old’s spectacles broke was the day his impact on the world began. He realized how difficult it is to function without them, and decided to start a foundation that would provide glasses to students who could not afford them. His foundation called Sight Learning, has donated and collected $1 Million worth of glasses for kids in need. Without a doubt, Yash Gupta is nothing short of remarkable.
Ryan Herijac | Age: 7
At the age of 7, Ryan learned that clean water was hard to come across in Africa. He thought about how easy it was for him to reach the nearest water fountain and could not help but feel badly for the children who have to walk hours to reach the nearest well. Ryan asked his parents for money to donate towards building wells in Africa. He earned this money doing house chores but when he realized how much it would cost to finance one well, he began speak about the cause in local sports clubs as well as schools to raise more money. He started a foundation called Ryan’s Wells which is still active and has built over 1,000 wells in Africa.
Craig Kielburger | Age: 12
At Age 12 Craig stumbled upon an article about Iqbal Masih, a child who was murdered for speaking out against child labor. The article really stuck in Craig’s mind. He began to do more research about the topic and discovered that millions of children were being used as child laborers. Kielburger decided to do the same as Iqbal Masih, and put up a fight against these criminal acts. With the help of his classmates, he started a foundation called Free The Children which would later turn into the largest organization of children helping children. The foundation got so much attention that it now is partnered with the United Nations and Oprah’s Angel Network.
Hanna Taylor | Age: 5
When Hanna was five years old, she came across a homeless man eating food from a garbage can. The confused young lady, asked her parents why he was doing that. Her parents went on to explain that some people do not have enough money to afford food and a home. Hanna was determined to help the homeless, so she began a fundraising project that would later turn into a foundation called The Ladybug Foundation. Hanna decided that homeless people needed more luck, and because lady bugs are a known symbol of luck, she painted baby food cans in the color red with black spots. Hanna took these cans and went to local businesses asking for donations. Only five years later, this same foundation has raised half a million dollars worth of “luck” for the homeless.
Alexandra Scott | Age: 4
Before the age of one, Alex Scott was diagnosed with cancer. As she got older, she began to understand a lot about the disease as she was experiencing it first hand. At the age of four, Alex decided set up a simple lemonade stand in her front lawn to raise money towards finding a cure for cancer. Her lemonade stand gained a lot of attention and raised ample funds. This one-girl-show turned into a nationwide foundation called Alex’s Lemonade Stand. Although Alex passed away at the age of 8-years-old, volunteers, businesses, and schools across The United States continue her charity work by having an annual lemonade stand. Alex’s Lemonade Stand has raised over $5 million for pediatric cancer research.
Nicholas Lowinger | Age: 13
At the age of five, Nicholas Lowinger walked into a homeless shelter with his light up shoes that he was proud to own. After taking one look around, Nicholas realized that many people in the shelter were not as lucky as he was. Not only did they not have light-up shoes, they did not have shoes at all. He noticed that those who did have shoes were wearing ones that were falling apart, shared, and often the wrong size. Nicholas’s remarkable actions started by him donating his old clothes and shoes. At the age of 13 this noble young man began a foundation called Gotta Have a Sole Foundation. The foundation provides shoes of all sizes to homeless children. Nicholas collected 45,000 pairs of shoes and distributed them in 38 states. His work doesn’t stop there. He recently started a second foundation called Serving Love. This foundation provides sports footwear for children who can’t afford them.
Cayden Taipalus | Age: 8
Eight-year-old Cayden was standing in the lunch line when he noticed his friend returning his lunch tray because he could not afford to eat. Cayden was upset by the fact that his buddy felt embarrassed and even more so, that kids were not able to afford lunch. That afternoon, he went home and told his mother what happened. Together they decided to raise money so that kids would not have to return their trays and be hungry for the day. Within a short two-week period, this young boy did the remarkable and raised $22,000 by collecting donations and returning cans and bottles.
Coby Schoffman | Age: 19
Coby Schoffman is anything but the typical college frat-boy. He began his first year of college as an average political science major in Tel-Aviv and Istanbul. His experiences in these cities inspired him to make a difference in the world. In 2014, this teen took a semester’s leave of absence and traveled to Uganda to begin volunteer work. Within six months he started The Nation Foundation. His foundation has succeeded to provide hundreds of academic scholarships to children in Uganda, as well as inspire groups of student volunteers to make the trip to these poverty-inflicted cities and continue Coby’s work.
Matthew Baratz | Age: 17
While most teens spend their last year of high school with their noses in a pile of college applications, Matthew Baratz directed his energy towards starting up and running SSBTR, a non-profit organization that raises money and awareness for brain tumor research. After losing a loved one to brain cancer, he was motivated to help find a cure. He raised $50,000 at his first SSBTR annual walkathon. SSBTR goes down in the records for being the largest student-run non-profit organization in Arizona.
Braden Baker | Age: 10
Braden Baker is a 10-year-old boy who needs hearing aids. One day he left these amazing devices on a surface that his dog could reach. Not long after, Braden found them chewed-up and no longer working. As it was and is his responsibility to take care of his hearing aids, his parents sat him down to remind him how careful he must be. He learned that they don’t come cheap. In fact he learned just how much it costs to replace his hearing aids, which is a whopping $4,000! He was reminded how lucky he was that he had parents who can afford to replace the devices and learned that many kids are not able to pay for them at all. Braden got the message! The thought of not being able to have hearing aids set him on a mission to raise money for kids who were not able to afford them. He set up a GoFundMe account and was able to raise $15,000 for the cause.
Zach Bonner | Age: 6
Zach Bonner has been passionate about helping the homeless from an age as young as six. His efforts to help the homeless was amplified when Hurricane Charley hit his hometown, Tampa, Florida. Hurricane Charley destroyed many homes and left hundreds of people in need of help. With a little red wagon, Zach gathered enough water bottles to fill 27 pickup trucks and donated them to those who had lost their homes. He didn’t stop there. Bonner started a foundation called The Little Red Wagon Foundation which would focus on helping homeless children. To raise money for this foundation and awareness for the cause, Zach walked 2,500 miles across the United States, and lived out of a box for seven straight days. Bonner was successful in raising thousands of cans of food as well as capturing the attention of Americans, and focusing it on the cause.
Cecily Mohammed & Krysten Muir | Ages: 16
Cecily Mohamed and Krysten Muir are two teenage girls who are remarkable for several reasons. They both are starting kickers for their school’s football team. The two girls are treated differently for being on the boys team. They explain that some of the members are not happy to be playing with girls. Despite the harsh treatment, these young ladies continue to be remarkably strong by sticking to what they love. However, their strength doesn’t stop on the field. When they’re not at practice, they run a foundation that raises awareness and funds for cervical cancer research; they called it Think Pink. Both having lost loved ones to cervical cancer, they took notice to the lack of cancer awareness in their schools and decided to change that. Their organization is still running and they plan on keeping up their good work after they graduate. Way-to-go girls!