Meet Destiny Rose, the founder of Mumz4Kidz, a nonprofit designed to challenge teens to give up tradition and think about helping others. Rose, 16, lives in Southlake, where she created The Homecoming Challenge. The Carroll High School junior is urging students to give up the mum money and donate the cash — which can reach $1,000 — to the less fortunate. If you still picture a mum as just a flower, forget it. Today's mums often reach the size of a full body. Rose says the homecoming tradition is too excessive and expensive.
Rose wants students to think about spending the money in better ways. In particular, Rose wants to help feed the underprivledged at Dallas-based nonprofit, Youth World Learning Center. Rose says it is easy to live with rose-colored glasses on and not see the need all around. She reminds us that $50 can feed a family of six. Last year Rose and friends donated their mum cash and fed 16 families. Rose wants to send a message that helping others through charitable work should come from the heart and be a lifelong committment.
We wanted to know more about Mumz4Kidz and Rose, and she was kind enough to answer a few questions for us:
Dawn Tongish: Please begin by telling us about Mumz4Kidz.
Destiny Rose: Mumz4Kidz is a organization that blossomed from the passion of four high school students in 2013. Last year, instead of buying expensive mums for the homecoming game, these students donated to Youth World Learning Center, fed 16 families and wore shirts to raise awareness for this children’s ministry. These students have worked for the past five years with other Carroll students in Students Standing Strong and SASO to help raise money to provide groceries to feed 400 families Thanksgiving dinner. Youthworld’s goal during the Thanksgiving season is to bring dignity to families by providing groceries, so they can be a part of the tradition of preparing a Thanksgiving dinner together.
DT: How did you become involved with Mumz4Kidz, and why are you so passionate about the work being done?
DR: I created Mumz4Kidz this fall. Thanksgiving is all about being grateful for what you have, and living with a generous spirit. It’s time for students to step up and make a change in this community. Mumz4Kidz is a chance for students to give, and be a part of something huge! Every small act of kindness is part of a big impact. I’m passionate about the kids at Youthworld and my peers around me. The kids at Youthworld need us, and we need to look beyond our everyday life and help others. It’s a win-win.
DT: Your desire to give back is inspirational. Do you hope to inspire other young people to do their part to volunteer in their communities?
DR: It’s less about volunteer work, and more about loving others. It’s so easy to fall into the rut of living a selfish lifestyle. An immense number of young people are questioning their duty on Earth. I believe this is the next step. I pray every day that this generation would live more generously, but even more importantly- to follow their passions as well.
DT: Homecoming is a big part of any teen’s rite of passage. Do you understand the reluctance on the part of some youngsters to "give it up" in the way you are asking?
DR: I certainly understand that, and I want to simply offer an option to use the money in a different manner. I am not “anti-mum” or against anyone that wants a mum, I just saw an opportunity to give to children I am passionate about. We don’t need mums, but they do need food. Mumz4kidz offers an opportunity to do some good. Through this movement, I have encouraged people that want mums to donate as well.
DT: How can the people of North Texas help meet your needs for 2014? What are your biggest needs?
DR: For next year, we are looking for corporate sponsors to take care of shirt expenses in order to maximize the impact of our donations. We are also looking to expand the reach of the movement into more schools throughout the Metroplex. We have a vision for students standing up and spreading the word to their schools and youth groups. Imagine what we can do if we all work together!
DT: What is the most memorable moment in your experiences at Mumz4Kidz?
DR: My favorite moment is when we deliver the groceries to the families. It’s a chance to physically serve others- not only financially, but from one family to another, sharing a beautiful moment. We aren’t just sending our money out to an unknown cause. There are real people that are now able to have a meal we sometimes take for granted. It’s the best part of all of this!
DT: How do you plan to carry on this charitable work in your future?
DR: I plan to be involved in this organization when I go to college in two years. I want to empower students to own the movement in their schools, however I will remain very much involved. My hope is that students will not only donate and serve the children of South Dallas, but grow kinder every day, and make a decision to be the best person they can be, academically, socially and philanthropically.
If you'd like to nominate a local resident for a BubbleLife community profile, contact Dawn Tongish at firstname.lastname@example.org or find her on Twitter at @DawnTongish.