Drugs Make You Un-Smarter

There's Nothing To Do

Youth Outdoor Activities Rob Sayers—Owner and Editor

Active Outdoors

Volunteer Ideas Jill Vanderwood   

Jobs 4 Teens Jill Vanderwood   

Ideas for Teens/Fun Dates Used with permission from

Dollar Stretcher

Questions for Kids

Youth Outdoor Activities

by Rob Sayers
Owner and Editor
Active Outdoors

          The aim of Active Outdoors is to present young people with ideas of what they could do.  The media talks about kids hanging around on street corners, up to no good, but if they were given ideas of positive things that they could do that were fun, then it may well be different.  Active Outdoors fills that gap where they don't know what opportunities are available to them.  We want to directly encourage young people to get outside and enjoy spending time in the world around them.  Hopefully in time this will lead to an appreciation of an activity or two, and then to appreciate their environment.

For a full list of activities with a full description, visit the website at: http://www.activeoutdoors.info/activeoutdoors/Article35.html

Another organization you may want to get in touch with is Big City Mountaineers.  They support young people from cities by taking them on wilderness adventures.
Big City Mountaineers

Volunteer Jobs

by Jill Vanderwood

Volunteering can help a teenager build job skills, self confidence and look very good on a resume. While other kids are just beginning their working experience, you will already have training and experience which can give you the upper hand in the job market.

When looking for volunteer jobs, either for required community service hours, or for something to do, there are many opportunities available. If you are a teen who likes animals, you could volunteer to work at an animal shelter or offer to walk someone's dog. Are you interested in art? How about face painting at a neighborhood event or making posters or flyers for a cause. Doris Keeler, Suite 101

Teens with computer skills could volunteer to help children with homework, or teach a computer class to senior citizens. If your skill is in math, there are always kids who need help understanding their math assignments.

Literacy is another issue of great importance. There are adults who can't read well enough to read to their children, read the labels on medication or read the instructions from a boss at work.  Kids can volunteer as tutors for adult learners, read to kids, or to elderly people who can't see. Two teens I know have volunteered for the Humane Society. They started out by taking cans of cat food to the shelters, and now they take their family cats so children can read to their pet.

Have you considered the Special Olympics? This is an opportunity to help a disabled person feel important.  These events are usually in spring or summer months. You can call the organization or look for posters in McDonald's restaurants. 

If you have someone in your family with an illness such as cancer, diabetes, or MS, you might wish to raise money for a cause. Doris Keeler, Suite 101 

If you know a large family in your neighborhood, you might raise money to help them buy shoes or holiday gifts. You can start by recycling cans for your causes. This not only brings in money, but helps save cans from the landfill.

Junior high kids can become members of the Kiwanis Builders Club. You can find information about the clubs in your area by visiting kiwanis.org. Their projects range from fundraising for HIV/AIDS prevention in Africa to recycling drives, to cleaning up parks. Kiwanis Builders home page

High school age kids can join the Kiwanis Key Club. From building bridges, to collecting over six tons of food, thousands of dollars raised for cancer research, helping eliminate iodine deficiency disorder, Key Club International plays a vital role in serving the children of the world. Search Kiwanis Key Club to find a club in your area.

Doris Keeler, from Suite 101 suggests, “If a teen is still having difficulty coming up with the right opportunity, there are numerous websites set up to match interests with activities in their own communities.  Network for Good is one place to start the search.  Click on the "I want to volunteer" tab on the page, and fill in their state and zip code. There you will find a list of opportunities, and search out those suitable for teens.” Some Ideas come from: Suite 101 Teen Volunteering and Where to Start: Finding Volunteer Opportunities in Your Own Community Mar 1, 2009 Doris Keeler

List of Jobs 4 Kids

by Jill Vanderwood


Since I am a busy writer, I hired my granddaughter Savanna to clean my house. One time she is paid for her work and the next time she works for her cell phone payment. Hiring young people gives them job experience, helps build confidence and starts building their resume, so they can get a better paying job.

Computer expert:

You're an expert, and you don't know it:

Make a business card and pass them out, outside Verizon stores. Offer:

Programming for a customer's new phone; adding phone #'s; teach text messaging; teach people how to take and download pictures to their profile or their computers. Do you think this is silly? I would pay someone for this service.

Have you taken photography classes? Offer to teach people how to use their new digital cameras; download pictures to a disc or to their computers. Or, go into homes and take family pictures.

You can be a teacher

Mother's Helper:

Today mother's are very busy with young children. They often have to work outside their homes, and when they come home the children are tired and hungry. Mom is tired as well. Be sure to charge by the hour. 

Personal Shopper:

If you have a driver's license, you could offer your services as a shopper. Be sure to charge and hourly wage, plus mileage.

Start a club for kids:

Ideas for Teens

With permission from Dollar Stretcher.

Video and camera ideas

Have Karaoke night and make music videos. *

Date Ideas

Outdoor fun

+ DollarStretcher/Living Better for Less: Marcie L. in W. Jordan, UT

* Add by Jill Vanderwood

Questions for Teens:

Do you have a plan in case you are approached with drugs?

Has anyone approached you with drugs, alcohol, or tobacco?

What did/will you do?


Can you avoid drug use, or have you tried drugs/alcohol or tobacco?

What would you tell others who are in the same situation?

Do the kids you hang out with smoke?

Do they drink on weekends?

Do you ever feel uncomfortable around kids you grew up with who are making different choices?

Can you tell them no?

Can you avoid them?

Will they tease you, confuse you, or pressure you to try something you really don't want to try?

Is there someone you can talk to about this?

Please find someone to talk to if you are having a hard time saying no.

Helpful Resources for Teens

from Jennifer Storm

I think I may have a drinking or drug problem.

This is a very common thought, and maybe you do or maybe you don't have a problem. It isn't my job, or anyone else's, for that matter, to tell you whether or not you are an alcoholic or an addict. You must decide that on your own. If you are asking, obviously things have led you to this very important question.

This admission is a very personal one, and the road to recovery which hopefully follows the admission is yours and yours alone. But here is the best part: you don't have to travel it alone. There are so many resources and places to get help, and they are all at your fingertips. Here are but a few of them:

Try Alcoholics Anonymous. Hey, it won't kill ya. Check out the "Is AA for you" section—it will answer every question you may have. Maybe Narcotics Anonymous http://www.na.org/  is more your speed—pun intended! Look in the yellow pages of your phone book for local phone numbers for AA and NA. People are there waiting to listen to you, help you, and even pick you up and take you to a meeting.
   If you choose to go to a rehabilitation center, try Hazelden http://www.hazelden.org. Since 1949, they have helped people reclaim their lives from the disease of addiction using a variety of therapeutic approaches. They are a wonderful, comprehensive center, and if they aren't right for you, they can steer you to the right place.

Think you may have an eating disorder?
      Just like any other disease, an eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia is an addiction, and if left untreated, it can lead to all kinds of problems, like liver damage, throat damage, and possibly death.
      The National Eating Disorder Association http://www.edap.org  has great resources.  Visit their Web site or call their toll free helpline to talk to someone confidentially at (800) 931-2237 or (800) 931-2237

Are you or a friend having suicidal thoughts?

My book, Blackout Girl, dealt with not only my own battle with suicidal thoughts and attempts, but my best friend taking her own life when I was only fifteen. I only wish there had been hotlines and resources then like there are today. Maybe I would have picked up the phone and called someone. Suicide is no joke, and if you are having these thoughts or you have a friend or loved one who has expressed these thoughts, call the number listed below and talk to someone who is trained to help. Sometimes it's hard and scary to think about reaching out to someone who knows us or the people in our lives—that's why hotlines like these are available. They are free and confidential. You don't have to suffer in silence—there is help.

1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433) or 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

Are you a victim of crime?

Do you know that as a crime victim, you have many rights under the law? 

To learn more about your rights as a crime victim, check out these amazing resources:
National Center for Victims of Crime http://www.ncvc.org

Office for Victims of Crime http://www.ovc.gov

Rape Abuse & Incest National Network http://www.rainn.org
National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1.800.656.HOPE
These sources are free, confidential, and open 24/7.
I'm not sure if I am gay or not.
Whether you are just questioning your sexuality, or you know for certain, it's helpful to reach out and find support. There is so much fear, discrimination, and hatred in this world. The goal is to keep you safe and to help you find an environment that will foster healthy questioning and development.
Here are some amazing places to look for help:
Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network http://www.glsen.org

Human Rights Campaign http://www.hrc.org

I don't know what to do to help my adolescent child.
While all the above resources can help you as a parent, "ByParents-ForParents.com" is a great resource just for you.

©2014 Savanna Peterson and Jill Vanderwood. Design: Why Wait Webs