One day, the old man was walking along a beach that was littered with thousands of starfish that had been washed ashore by the high tide. As he walked he came upon a young girl who was eagerly throwing the starfish back into the ocean, one by one.
Puzzled, the man looked at the girl and asked what she was doing.
The young girl paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean. The tide has washed them up onto the beach and they can’t return to the sea by themselves,” the girl replied. “When the sun gets high, they will die, unless I throw them back into the water.”
The old man replied, “But there must be tens of thousands of starfish on this beach. I’m afraid you won’t really be able to make much of a difference.”
The girl bent down, picked up yet another starfish and threw it as far as she could into the ocean. Then she turned, smiled and said, “It made a difference to that one!”
adapted from The Star Thrower, by Loren Eiseley (1907 – 1977)
I have always been inspired by The Star Thrower story. Too often, we lose sight of the enormous impact just one person can make. We assume that children must always learn from adults. This story illustrates one of our core values at imPACT, which is that all voices have value and we can all learn from one another.
In partnership with Dr. Stephanie Akoumany of BLOOM, imPACT introduces the Girls imPACT Web Series. The vision is to create an intergenerational space for women and girls to discuss the ways in which we make impact on our communities regardless of age or resume. We want all young girls to know that they don’t have to wait until they’ve “made it” to jump in and make change, and that even small change can be radical! Over the course of 6 weeks, we train youth moderators on how to build an intentional conversation; we give them a broad topic, for example Voice, and they develop the content, identify panelists, and run the show. We will host quarterly episodes on Voice, Community, Confidence, and Health and Wellness. Join us by visiting the Girls imPACT tab.