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About the Author

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Sharon J. Smith is an organizer and trainer active in social change movements for global justice, human rights, and environmental sustainability. She worked with student networks to achieve landmark environmental victories in the logging and finance sectors and has trained thousands of youth in advocacy for social change. As Program Advisor for the Brower Youth Awards at Earth Island Institute, Sharon supported hundreds of emerging environmental activists annually and co-produced Emmy award-winning films shown on The Sundance Channel and PBS.

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YOU CARE – about the environment, about the health of the planet, and about every person’s right to be treated fairly and with dignity.

If you’ve ever wanted to change the world for the better but didn’t know how, then The Young Activist’s Guide to Building a Green Movement and Changing the World is the perfect book for you.

The book shares lessons learned from the winners of Earth Island Institute’s Brower Youth Awards, America’s top honor for young green leaders. The book includes are all the tools you need – from planning a campaign and recruiting supporters, to raising money and attracting media attention – to turn your ideas into actions and make changes that matter. The Guide also has tips on how students can boost the sustainability of their high school and college campuses, with contributions by Earth Day Network, and tips on how to launch a career in the environmental movement.

“Every day I get hundreds of emails from Story of Stuff viewers, asking what they can do to make a difference in the world. Now I can simply tell them one thing: Read The Young Activist’s Guide to Building a Green Movement + Changing the World. Really, everyone should read this book.”
—Annie Leonard, director, The Story of Stuff Project

The Young Activist’s Guide spotlights stories from youth like Jessie-Ruth Corkins, who saved her school $90,000 by greening its heating system for a science project. It also highlights the experiences of Billy Parish, whose small student group became one of the most influential coalitions in America addressing climate change. These eco-heroes have made headlines for passing legislation, founding nonprofits, and raising millions of dollars for sustainability – all before their twenty-third birthdays.

“If you ever thought about wanting to change the world, but didn't know where to start, then buy this book. It's an inspiring and practical guide for young people who want to take the first steps toward finding real solutions for the planet.”
—Michael Brune, executive director, Sierra Club

The Young Activist’s Guide blends stories of personal success with easy-to-follow instructions about the basics of social change organizing. The book is inspiring, instructive, and essential for anyone eager to make positive change.

“I love this book. There's no time to wait—the world needs you now. Take these strategies and make them your own.”
—Adam Werbach, chief sustainability officer, Saatchi & Saatchi
“Organizers spend decades developing tools and learning systems that Sharon Smith puts at the fingertips of young activists within a weekend.”
—Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, CEO, Green for All
“The Brower Youth Awards honor some of the best activists in America. Not just the best young activists—but the best activists, period. They have a lot to teach us in this book!”
—Bill McKibben, author of Eaarth and founder, 350.org

Printed with vegetable inks on 100% recycled paper. All author proceeds from the sale of this book go to Earth Island Institute’s Brower Youth Awards to support the next generation of young activists.