When 17-year-old Hannah Alper was only nine years old, she decided to start a blog. The only problem? She didn’t know what to write.
Her parents, who she views as her biggest supporters, encouraged her to write about something important. Since she loved her dogs, she decided to write about animals and other environmental topics. After learning about various organizations and issues in the environmental space, she was motivated to use her voice to advocate for others to live a more eco-conscious life.
Shortly after starting her blog, she started getting positive feedback around the eco-friendly content she was sharing. “People were trying what I was suggesting and were having a much more positive outlook on the environment and what we can do to help,” she recalled.
“I realized that even at nine years old, I had a voice and could make people listen.”
Since then, Hannah has used her voice and various platforms to illuminate education, poverty, homelessness, mental health, bullying, and more. “I realized that even at nine years old, I had a voice and could make people listen,” she recalled. “There have been so many moments since then when people have told me that I inspired them to take action, and that is what motivates me to continue.”
Now, Hannah is an author, activist, and motivational speaker. Through her blog, social media platforms, and her book, MomentoUS: Small Acts, Big Change, she raises awareness about the issues in the world and motivates others to create change. She also writes for the Huffington Post and gave a TED Talk about finding your spark. “I like to think I am an optimist,” she said. “I see the good in everything, every issue, every solution, and this has shaped me into the activist, leader, and person I am today.”
As an exceptional Gen Z’er making an impact, she was honored for her work in the Social Impact space through The ConversationaLIST. “I use my voice for good by raising awareness about the little things we can all do in our lives and inspiring people to recognize they can change the world,” she said. I have been an activist since the age of nine. Who else will make a difference if not for me and my generation?”
"Who else will make a difference if not for me and my generation?”
Hannah encourages young people to find a community that speaks to their interests. “When you find people that are interested or passionate about the same things you are, amazing things happen,” she said. “For every issue that you are passionate about, there is an organization out there that needs you and your voice.”
Five years from now, Hannah expects to be in the process of completing college and starting her career as a journalist. She wants to continue using her voice to create conversation and inspire others to develop solutions to the issues facing us. “I want to be a voice for the voiceless and shine a light on the things, issues, and stories from around the world that matter,” she explained. “I also want to tell good news stories because that is what I do now and what I believe everyone should do - share the good and be good.
Like The Conversationalist, Hannah believes that conversations have the power to change the world. “When we break open echo chambers, take the time to listen to comfortable and uncomfortable issues and amplify each other’s voices, incredible things happen,” she said. “The world is only the way that it is because of all sides and their opinions and voices.”
"When we break open echo chambers, take the time to listen to comfortable and uncomfortable issues and amplify each other’s voices, incredible things happen.”
She believes that people take the time to listen and understand each other in a unified world. She challenges her fellow Gen Z’ers to have a respectful conversation with someone who has a different political view. “Listen to their opinion, understand their experience...Speak calmly. You never know. Maybe you'll both learn something.”
Big snaps to Hannah Alper for all she does to inspire change. Keep up with her on Instagram to learn more about all of her impactful work.