Obesity amongst our teens, pre-teens and adolescent children is seeing a sharp rise over the last few years. It is estimated that in upwards of 30 percent of the youth populations of Canada and the United States are overweight. Obviously this brings about concerns among parents, doctors and educators.
As parents we often worry about our kids. How are they doing in school? What will they be when the grow up? What types of adults are we raising? These questions are asked by every parent. One way to raise your child to become a good adult, experience life, and gain some history of working with people are through volunteer programs. But what types of programs are available and how do they fit into a long term plan?
If you are a teen considering suicide, or, if you are a parent, sibling or loved one who knows someone who isn’t happy with life, you should know there are many options for help. First, you must understand that thoughts of suicide amongst youth are unfortunately a fairly normal experience. Growing up brings it challenges, and sometimes things seem quite overwhelming. If you are searching for help for your friend or family member in this predicament here are some thoughts to help you help them.
When school is finally over, many teenagers are usually itching to find a summer job. Now that school’s out, some of the more industrious teenagers out there would want to earn a bit of money in order to finance their plans of going out with friends, pay a bit for their tuition or buy some of the latest trendy gadgets out there in the market. The first place that teenagers would look at is of course, the Internet. Be warned though, not all that glitters is gold, for the Internet is chockfull of scammers that would rob you blind if you fall for it.
Scammers, Scammers Everywhere
Sometimes they are crafty–sometimes they just put it out there in the open. Internet scammers try their best to lure would be victims through easy promises and outward lies. Oftentimes, you might receive an email saying that this company so-and-so is under staffed and that they need someone who could man the fort temporarily. This deal is particularly attractive for teenagers who aren’t looking for any permanent status of employment yet.
Lately, job scammers are even using social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter in order to have access to a wider range of people. You will also find companies promoting home business scams such as the A to Z Cash System and present them as if they were actual jobs.
Job scammers often use the attractiveness of working from home in order to ensure that they can get the fullest attention of their would-be victims. Teenagers have the propensity to fall for this since they are usually internet savvy, and would be happy not to get out of their own houses and do some manual labor in order to earn a bit of money.
Another reason why teenagers might be tempted to take their chance with such companies is that, the state of the economy nowadays is looking rather a bit too grim. Companies just could not afford to take in new hires, especially teenagers who are not qualified enough or are certified by any schools to possess necessary skills. This is why we should always be on the look-out for job scammers so as not to push our teenagers in deeper muddles.
Avoiding Job Scams
Don’t be too cynical about things though. Legit online jobs exist. You just have to look at any State approved job sites to find the job that you are looking for. Still, whenever you browse this website, take it with a grain of salt. There are still some scammers out there who can get through the scrutiny of the State. For good measure, try to look out for the following signs:
If the job requires you to pay some money out front, turn it down immediately or look for something else. No legitimate employer would ask for money outright from its would-be employees. Anyone who asks money this way should be treated as a suspect.
Be especially wary of jobs that say that you can work at home, with plenty of fringe benefits. Although this “employee” package can be very attractive, you can be sure that this is a fake. Any entry-level fringe benefits is but a pie in the sky, for fringe benefits are granted when you work your way up the ladder—not when you are starting out at the bottom rung. Also, stay-at home jobs are sometimes too good to be true. Chances are, it isn’t real.
Yard cleanup is recommended as a youth volunteer project at a seniors’ home. Not only are the youth more than able to use a rake or a shovel for cleaning a yard, this is a safe outdoor activity that will benefit both the youth and the senior citizens, not to mention the entire community.
An Untidy Yard
A messy yard can breed bacteria hazardous to the sensitive health of senior citizens not to mention the fact that walking across an overgrown yard can be dangerous in terms of mobility. In addition, learning how to use a rake or a shovel will help the youth learn a life skill that they can use for their own yards later on.
This is a good opportunity to encourage volunteerism among the youth of the community. This job is doable by any person who is able to handle a shovel and a rake. There are other methods of keeping yards looking beautifully. For example, hiring a landscaping company to recommend the addition of turf, soil, pavers and pebbles and where to place these will create a world of difference in curb appeal. Not only will this create a more pleasant environment that seniors will enjoy, it will encourage serenity and calmness in the residents.
Benefits of a Clean Yard
When senior citizens can count on their yard looking trim and neat without having to do any work themselves, this will promote relaxation and create a stress-free environment. Volunteers may want to check with a professional landscaper who has a strong understanding of landscaping and plants to ensure that they are giving the yard optimal care. Having a good-looking yard will become a source of pride for seniors who live in the home. Neighbors will admire how neat and clean the surrounding area of the home is. All volunteers needs is the right rake or tool for performing tasks of landscaping. A professional landscaping company can show the youth volunteers the ropes. The yard can then be maintained with regular tasks done by youth volunteers.
To What Extent
The extent of work that a yard requires will vary depending on each yard. One senior home’s yard may involve flower bed winterization while another home may simply need the leaves raked. As a general recommendation, a landscape that is more demanding will benefit from a consultation with a professional landscaper.
What Is Involved?
Depending on the season, the services involved in cleaning up the yard will change. In the spring time, yard cleaning will need to focus on the removal of winter-accumulated debris. This includes removing insulation such as mulch that you placed in your yard. It also involves fertilizing and thatching the grass, preventing the growth of weeds by applying herbicides and pruning plants to prepare them for the season of growing. In the fall, yard clean up focuses on tasks such as making the yard ready for winter. Generally, this includes raking pine needles and leaves as well as their disposal. The lawn must be mowed one last time and the grass fertilized. Tasks also include pulling out annual beds or the garden, adding insulation materials around sensitive shrubs and plants and performing any pruning in the fall just before winter.
Job placement for at risk youths can be one of the best platforms to help the young ones grow and develop the necessary skills in life. However, it is also one of the challenging opportunities, especially if you are running a construction site and have to give the young ones an opportunity to work with you as your helpers for six weeks. You might have to contend with the issue of losing your valuable equipment and tools through misplacement, not knowing who took what and where a certain equipment could be at any given time.
Normally, this is not your challenge alone, I have seen people who have had to contend with this problem and the stress involved is huge. Everybody and especially if you own a construction site would want to have a clear inventory of all the equipment involved, while at the same time tracking the placement of each and every at risk youth for better accountability. However, it is easy to register a success story and I know of construction sites where many such job placements have successfully produced great minds who have gone ahead to make great strides despite the fact that they are within at risk youth bracket.
In the success story mentioned above, I noted that both the construction site owner and the youth given job placements had their own share of challenges which required to be addressed carefully for success to be registered. One of the challenges that the site owner had to contend with was to ensure that all his tools were in good shape at all time and that he could account for each and every one of them at the end of each and every day. On the other hand, the at risk youths also wanted to prove themselves and this involved hard work while at the same time giving proper accountability to the site owner and especially making sure that they did not only take the tools they needed but also were accountable at all times.
This helped in ensuring that the construction site run like a well-oiled machine and after years of working with different groups of youths under job placement, the owner registered a hundred percent success rate in ensuring that all his tools were intact, none was lost and those that needed repairs were repaired on time. It was however amazing that despite the fact that many other construction sites and companies had a long list of complaints regarding misplaced and lost equipment, the site owner registered on one such case throughout the year. This he attributed to the efficient use of two software namely fixed asset and check in/out software solution. I learnt that these two solutions were the wheel behind his success in keeping a proper inventory of all tools and equipment and not only so but that they are cost effective and dependable.
That apart, the mechanisms employed in the running of the company plus the hard work and accountability from at risk youths sharpened their skills in a way that positioned them in a better position for employment after their six weeks of job placement. Most of the youths who have gone through job placement in this construction company have gone ahead to land amazing opportunities in other construction sites and through their wise input, most of the companies where they are employed ends up embracing fixed asset and check in/out software solution for their use.
Unemployment is not just a problem that adults face. The youth of today are also affected by the poor state of the job market. Currently, 20% of youths are unemployed and not in school. Compared to those still in school and those who hold a stable job, this 20% is in danger of facing negative long term effects on their employment prospects and salary. The good news for unemployed youths is that many organizations and the government have recently been proposing initiatives that aim to reduce youth unemployment rates. I am actually writing this post to talk about some of these initiatives. More people should become aware of these proposals and push for their implementation.
One of the proposed programs for curbing youth unemployment is the introduction of a “labor market program” Through the labor market program, youths are continuously guided and given help with regard to employment issues. Youths are also given more priority and a few other benefits so that they are able to get employed without having to waste too much time. Another program proposed to deal with youth unemployment is the creation of a “youth employment fund.” With the creation of such a fund, all the incentives and funds which are meant to benefit the youths will be integrated into just one incentive program. This way, youths will be able to get much needed financial help in a more timely manner.
Arguably, the most promising proposal is the one which aims to create a financial education program. Under the financial education program, youths will be taught all about investment as well as other financial matters. Through the financial education program, youths who are over the age of majority will be taught to do binary options trading at www.Bankdebinary.co.uk. This part of the program looks very promising because whether employed or unemployed, people can make a stable income through binary options trading. Doing it is very simple as traders only need to predict whether the values of assets go up or down to make a profit. Banc de Binary should also prove to be a good partner for this program as there are no banc de binary withdrawal problems - Banc de Binary has the best money withdrawal system among all binary options brokerages. With Banc de Binary’s trading platforms, the youths learning experience when it comes to dealing with assets will surely end up running smooth. Considering all of these things, the partnership should prove to be a very daring move on the part of the government – if it should succeed, many unemployed youths will be given the chance to earn a sound living.
The youth should not be facing unemployment problems, yet they are. Hopefully, at least one or two of the proposals mentioned in this post will be implemented. These proposals will surely go a long way towards curbing youth unemployment. The future will always be shaped by the youth, so it is only important that both the government and the private sector do what they can to help them. Hopefully, this article will get people to help push for the implementation of sound youth employment initiatives.
If you are a young adult the last thing on your mind is probably life insurance. What the heck do I need that for you might be saying! The majority of us do not begin to think about investing toward our future or our family’s future until about middle age when life is beginning to wind down and retirement is in the not so distant future. While we are still relatively young and carefree we seldom stop to consider what would happen if the unexpected and sometimes worst-case scenario events came to visit our lives and the impact they would have not just on us but on our loved ones as well. We think about buying into health insurance and automotive insurance policies because they impact us in the here and now, but we should also take time to think about how life insurance will help invest in the future as well.
The market for life insurance policies can be daunting and confusing without a doubt. You will probably find yourself asking questions such as:
What dollar amount should I invest in for life insurance?
What type of policy should I purchase, term, permanent, or whole life?
What monthly premium can I afford?
How long will it take for my policy to mature?
What benefits can I or my family collect on while I am still living?
The answers to these questions will be very different depending on what your income, expenses, and profession are. An individual who works in an office setting will likely not need the same coverage as someone who works with heavy machinery because their work environment carries less risk of injury. Another important consideration is if you have family members who are dependent upon you for support, if you do then you will want to safeguard their means of living.
It is also important to note that insurance companies look at important factors of risk when selling policies and base the cost on those risks. If you are young and in good health, the premiums on a life insurance policy will be significantly less than if you purchase in later years and health problems may have had a chance to manifest themselves and will make a policy not only more expensive but harder to obtain.
Many employers offer term life insurance benefits to their employees at excellent rates, but should you decide on additional coverage with living benefits where you can borrow from the equity you have paid into your plan to cover life anticipated or unexpected events you will want to research such coverage thoroughly. There are a variety of outlets to research and buy policies extra coverage should you choose, and the internet puts information at your fingertips. Before you buy, it may be an excellent idea to enlist the help of an experienced insurance agent to talk about circumstances specific to your lifestyle. They can help you decide whether to purchase and where to purchase to ensure a bright financial future. After all is said and done, if you are a young adult you will have many tough decisions ahead of you. It is part of growing up.
If you are a parent then you will likely face a child that plays with fire at some point in their life. To kids, fire is an interesting thing and it is fun to create. By the same token, fire is an extremely dangerous thing that can have grave consequences if not treated with respect. If you have kids in the home, you will want to follow the following tips to keep your children safe from fire fire.
First, you should absolutely have fire alarms in each room of your home. These are sometimes referred to as smoke detectors but they are essentially the same thing. The alarms should be installed very close to sleeping areas like bedrooms so that they will awake residents should a fire break out. As a general rule batteries for these smoke alarms should be replaced at least annually or per the recommendation from the manufacturer. However, perhaps a better way is to replace them during Daylight Savings Time. This is often used as a great time to remember to change the batteries in fire alarms. Also, you should perform some light maintenance on your fire alarms by keeping them free of dust and making sure they are operational.
If you have a fireplace in your home make sure that you keep it in good working order. Most people don’t realize that they need to perform basic maintenance on their fireplaces at least annually if not sooner. Minimally, you need to make sure all of the soot is cleaned from the chimney. The reason for this is that as you have fires, they soot rises and sticks to the inside of the chimney. This material is actually quite flammable so it needs to be cleaned out. If you can’t do it yourself make sure you call a professional chimney sweep.
Children should take part in a family evacuation plan. Sites like firesafetytraining.net discuss how to have a family fire drill and this is imperative. Why? Because in the event of a fire children should know precisely how to exit the home, where the escape routes are, and alternative exits from the home. An educated child is a safe child so do not take this lightly. Teach your children about fire and particularly the dangers of fire in the home.
Also, as a parent one of your jobs is to keep an eye on your child’s behavior. You should look for signs of your children playing with fire. Things like burnt matches or the smell of smoke on your child are sure signs that something is going on. Matches or lighters found in your child’s room is another warning sign that should be investigated.
Perhaps the most important point of all of this is to discuss the dangers of fire with your children. Part of our duties as a parent is to inform our children about dangers to them and to keep them safe. Be honest with them and have a frank discussion about fire safety. It could end up saving their life, and yours. FEMA has a great website about how to talk to your children about the dangers of fire and it can be found here.
If you have children then taking a family vacation can be quite an adventure. There are issues with kids traveling, particularly when they travel abroad. As you know, kids have lots of needs: food, sleep, entertainment, etc. Oftentimes this can lead to a lot of stress on your family vacation. Gone are the days, where you as a parent, can lounge about by the pool without a care in the world. All that being said, we intend to offer you some positives to taking the kids on your next vacation out of the country.
On the positive side taking a family trip abroad can be fairly cost effective – depending on where you are going of course. If you travel to a South American or Central American country then you can count on good prices for lodging and food. Traveling to say Costa Rica, you will find very nice hotels, lots of cheap eco-tourist activities, and very healthy and low cost food choices. Most Latin American countries have very reasonable prices and make it possible to take the whole family for a song (or at least a low cost low dollar vacation).
Costa Rica is actually a recommended vacation spot as several of our staff members here at NanDecade.ca have taken trips there. Almost unanimously, we recommend going to Manuel Antonio National Park which is a tropical paradise filled with wildlife, adventure, and fun for all ages. You can tour the jungle, see more wildlife than you can imagine, or visit the nearby white sand beaches. Yes it’s true – both a tropical jungle paradise as well as beach resort. How can you go wrong?
If you are interested in outdoor activities then Latin American countries once again take the cake as far as variety, and cost. You can choose between ziplining (quite an experience by the way), nature walks, and take tours of the rain forest. Since we are a site that focuses on children, we highly recommend a trip to The Children’s Eternal Rain Forest which was started by a small group of children in Swedish countryside. Yes, you heard that right – A group of kids from Sweden! They were so impressed by the rainforest they started raising money to buy a small parcel of land, protect it, and continue raising money to continue. This is quite a story, and one that your kids might enjoy hearing. Activism is alive and well amongst the youth of our world.
Other choices for travel include Europe, the United States, or Asia. What would your kids like? Europe is a great choice for children as it is rather “civilized” and most countries speak English. This truly can help kids while traveling as they feel comfortable communicating with residents of the countries that you are traveling to. Of course safety should always be a concern when traveling with children and you should always be aware of your surroundings. Also, the Federal Aviation Administration has a webpage devoted to kids, and flight safety that we recommend you check out.
As you may or may not know, young adult unemployment levels are quite high. Why is this? Quite honestly there is a lot of competition for jobs in this bad economy atmosphere. So, how can you help a teen find a job? Here are some of the best tips on setting them up for success!
First, you will want to have your teen jobseeker craft a resume. This is usually a stumbling block for most teens as they don’t have experience, or at least much experience to speak of, and they are at a loss as to what to list for an employment background. The key here is to be honest. It’s a fact that everyone has to start somewhere and teens usually don’t have much in the way of work experience or job history. So, you will want to list things like education, sports teams, volunteer or charity work. If by chance you haven’t done any of those things, just list things like your interests, schools you have attended, and what type of job you are looking for. Keep in mind, this will really set you apart from those other teens who don’t have a resume. The potential employer will see the effort you put into your resume and will think that you are a higher quality, more attention to detail candidate than those without a resume.
Now that you have a resume, you will want to begin applying for jobs. As a teen your options for jobs are scarce. Most start with jobs in the fast food industry or other repetitive style environments. The good news here is that fast food establishments are usually hiring and they will almost always give a chance to a new employee who is a teenager. So, start applying for as many as these types of jobs as you can. You should start with those jobs close to your home so that it is convenient to get to and from work. As a teen, you might not have a car or other transportation so a job within walking distance would be ideal.
Now that you have applied for jobs you need to get ready for the interview. Often interviews are very scary for those who have never been through one before. Just remember, they are interviewing you because they want to hire you. They need the help or they wouldn’t waste their time talking to you. So, be ready to answer any and all questions honestly. If you need further help with the interview process, here is a great resource by the Canadian government to help you prepare for a job interview.
If you have already finished your public education, and are looking to actually start a career as opposed to getting into fast food, there are some programs available depending on what you are interested in. If you would like to learn how to drive a forklift you could get certified fairly easily at a site like forkliftcertificationnow.com or, you could also attend a trade school of some kind. Keep in mind however, that this veers away from finding a job right away, however through most of these programs the jobs do come after successfully completing the program.
To summarize, if you are a youth looking for a job you should follow the above steps as a reference guide. Get your resume, apply, and go through the interview! Don’t like the types of jobs you are applying for? Then get some education from a college, trade school, or certification program. Any way you slice it having a job is a great goal for any youth.
Photo by Ann Arbor District Library / CC BY