Turning Guilt Into Action: Twenty-Somethings Leading Change

Interview by Billy Shore

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Do you have to be a certain age to solve a problem in your community? Does it take a specific level of experience to see someone in need and offer to help? In this powerful episode of Add Passion and Stir, hear from two young people from the next generation of leaders. Millennial chef Bobby Pradachith (Thip Khao) and recent college graduate and anti-hunger advocate Alana Davidson (University of New Hampshire) join Share Our Strength founders Billy and Debbie Shore to share how they are already making big impacts in their communities. When Alana discovered that a quarter of her college classmates struggled with hunger, she sprang into action by contacting the governor and the dean of students. “I couldn’t sit on the number,” she says. “I had to do something about it.” Her efforts resulted in Swipe It Forward, a stigma-free meal donation program for any student experiencing food insecurity. Chef Bobby leads his unique Lao restaurant – the only one in DC – with bold and authentic menu options that both intrigue American diners and minimize food waste. “We don’t hold back,” he promises.

Despite their accomplishments, both millennial superstars remain driven to increase their impact going forward. Chef Bobby is inspired by his family’s culture and work ethic, and plans to increase his involvement with helping those less fortunate both here and in Laos. The secret to his continued success will be persistence. “If you have goals, you have to work hard at them,” he says. Alana is looking forward to graduate school at Tufts University Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, and a future working on federal food policy. “Nutrition is never one of the national priorities,” she laments. “Food is used as a tool to keep people in poverty… How can we have a conversation around nutrition that isn’t polarized or too political because we all have to eat.” Host Billy Shore agrees. He describes the military concept of a ‘show of force,’ but posits, “What if our show of force was: We’re going to have the strongest generation in history because we’re going to feed them and educate them… We’re going to invest in kids and health and nutrition and access to food for everyone. Now that’s a pretty different way than most people think of a show of force, but I think there’s an opportunity there to wake people up. These issues really do affect our nation’s strength.”

Listen and be inspired by these two young visionaries who are changing the world.

Resources and Mentions:

No Kid Hungry

Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign is ending child hunger in America by ensuring all children get the healthy food they need, every day.

Thip Khao

This sleek & modern eatery showcases spicy Laotian dishes & classic cocktails with an exotic twist.

Swipe It Forward

A new program at the University of New Hampshire aimed at providing free meals in the dining halls for students in need, founded by Alana Davidson ’17.

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