BY DEBBIE NAZARIAN, LEMONADE DAY NATIONAL DIRECTOR
Today is Election Day in the United States. On the ballot this year is a choice of who Americans will choose as their president. We’ve seen a huge surge in the number of people voting this year- a privilege and responsibility we all have to make our voices heard. We are also seeing an increase in young voter enthusiasm and engagement throughout the country.
The Brookings Institution analyzed Census data which shows more than half of Americans are millennials or younger (voters born between 1981 and 2012/15), and they now make up 37 percent of the eligible voting population- just as large as the Baby Boomer and older generations (voters born before 1965).
Millennials, Gen X, Gen Y and Gen Z voters are also more engaged in pressing issues involving politics and our government including mental health and health care issues and reducing systemic racism. According to the top findings of the 40th edition of the Harvard Youth Poll, the enthusiasm is high for young voters to get out and vote.
Our mission at Lemonade Day is to help today’s youth become the business leaders, social advocates, community volunteers and forward-thinking citizens of tomorrow. It’s so encouraging to see our youth taking their responsibility to vote so seriously. I’m so proud of Mikaila Ulmer, our superstar Lemonade Day youth entrepreneur and owner of Me and the Bees Lemonade sold throughout the country. Mikaila understands the importance of each person’s vote, and even though she is not old enough to vote yet, she is doing her part to help friends and family fulfill their civic duty by providing rides to help them get to the polls and cast their votes.
Here is what Mikaila posted on her social channels:
“Being 16 years old has its perks but unfortunately, casting my own ballot in this year’s election is not one of them.
However, I’m determined to make a difference for our democracy in other ways, and one of those ways is making sure everyone’s voice can be heard.
I am committed to driving my friends and family to the polls and encouraging loved ones to vote.
This year will be the second election year that Gen Z has been eligible to vote. We are also the most ethnically and racially diverse generation! “
As the youngest voting generation, I’d like to remind Gen Z that every vote matters. This year there’s a lot of attention around safe voting practices and it’s very important to be an educated voter!
REMINDER : DOING your research on candidates and important issues on the LOCAL, STATE, and NATIONAL level is key to casting an educated vote for this November’s election. ”
Very wise words from someone who isn’t even eligible to vote for a few more years. We are so proud of Mikaila for her leadership and wisdom beyond her years!
I welcome your comments and suggestions at any time. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about Lemonade Day, please visit lemonadeday.org.