Turning Tides: a new resource to connect and support young changemakers
Turning Tides is a resource, created by Jasmine Rodman, World Ocean Day Youth Advisory Council alumna, which provides resources and peer advice to young advocates.
When Jasmine Rodman started her journey as an ocean advocate and artist, she admits that she didn’t know what she was getting into. Skills like networking, creating a website, building a social media presence, and simply balancing school, work and activism were all things she had to teach herself along the way. And reaching out for help seemed intimidating.
“For a long time, I hesitated to share when I didn’t know something and felt that I needed to learn, afraid that it would limit my opportunities or make people think I was less capable of my job,” said Jasmine, a 19 year old from Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada.
Over the years she spent as an environmental advocate, Jasmine was fortunate enough to connect with many other youth leaders worldwide through her work with Bow Seat Ocean Awareness Programs, The Ocean Project’s World Ocean Day, and the National Geographic Society. In talking with these other youth advocates, she discovered that she wasn’t alone in her initial lack of knowledge. Jasmine found that feeling burnt out, frustrated, and lost were not felt by her alone, but commonly experienced by most young activists she met.
“What I knew most, and heard over and over from other youth, was that this work was isolating,” expressed Jasmine, “Every single person I talked to assumed that they were the only one feeling this way.”
With the support of the National Geographic Society, Jasmine decided to create a project to help others starting out on the sometimes challenging path of youth advocacy. “This project is what I wished I had when I was starting out, and what I need now –- a resource to continually teach missing skills, to show the wide variety of ways we can all be advocates, and to let us know that everyone feels lost once in a while.”
The result was Turning Tides, a comprehensive website created by youth, for youth which aims to make advocacy work easier and more transparent, one toolkit at a time. On the site are a range of free, accessible resources with concise and practical information on all the skills that are often expected of young people, though rarely taught. Within these webpages, there is advice from some of the world’s leading changemakers on everything from “Balancing Work and School” to “Using Art for Advocacy.” Turning Tides was created to walk young people through every step of their advocacy journey with resources to help them start their initiatives, develop skills, and sustain their efforts.
“To all the young changemakers out there who are trying hard and doing their best: your contributions are both needed and wanted,” says Jasmine. “Hopefully, Turning Tides can help us help each other as we continue to make positive change in the world.”
Access Turning Tides at www.turningtidespod.com
About Jasmine Rodman: Jasmine Rodman, a National Geographic Young Explorer, is an artist, student, entrepreneur, and storyteller with a goal of making the world a little bit more beautiful, whether that be by helping youth environmental projects or by painting murals. She grew up exploring the gorgeous ocean, forests, and mountains around her home on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. At age 15, she started her own sustainable small business, Ocean Child Creative, using her art to start conversations about the ocean and raise funds for non-profits. She then joined Bow Seat Ocean Awareness Program’s Future Blue Youth Council, where she worked to create a brand- new granting program for young changemakers. As a National Geographic Young Explorer, she created the project Turning Tides, a multimedia exploration of youth advocacy. Turning Tides offers young people resources and advice, in order to encourage and empower them to start and continue this work in a way that aligns with their evolving life.