And The Winner Is…
We are delighted to announce the Kids of the Gulf t-shirt design contest winner is Matthew Andrews from Atlanta, Ga. Congratulations Matthew! And thank you for your design and your perspective on the Kids of the Gulf message!
KOTG supporter Ian Somerhalder loves Matthew’s chair design and wanted to share why he feels it speaks the Kids of the Gulf message.
“This really states it perfectly,” Ian said, after choosing the design. “Our youth have a lot of valuable things to say and now, more than ever, we need to listen.”
Truly, in our book you are all winners and we can’t thank you enough for supporting Kids of the Gulf. We had many excellent design entries, but just as importantly, we have so much respect and gratitude to all of you for your dedication to this project. Thank you for participating!
Once the design is made into a limited-edition t-shirt, it will be given as a reward to the backers on our next crowd funding campaign. We hope all of you will continue to follow our story and share our message! It really is about listening to the children and their ideas on how to make a change.
Kids of the Gulf Chats with Matthew Andrews
We recently spoke with Matthew about Kids of the Gulf, his inspiration for the design, and how today’s youth want to make an impact.
KOTG: How did you come up with the idea for your design?
Matthew: I have younger sisters. One day I was talking to my (13-year-old) sister on the phone and she got in trouble and that sparked the idea for me. I was thinking about when I was much younger, how I’d get in trouble and have to go into a time out, in a corner, or in a chair. Then I was thinking about reversing that role and having the adults sit down and think about what they’ve done. First I thought of the simple chair, and then the oil drop to represent the oil spill.
KOTG: How does the design represent the spirit and message of Kids of The Gulf?
Matthew: This design will spark conversations. People will ask, “What is that? What does that mean?” Then they will want to know what KOTG is and more about it.
Everyone might see it differently, but for the kids specifically, their voices need to be heard. They have ideas, they want to do things, and as adults we should let them.
KOTG: Do you think children and youth have better ideas—or even just different perspectives—on how to help the environment than adults do?
Matthew: I think the youth have a very unique voice. They consume a lot of information at a high rate. And sometimes they might have a really fantastic idea. The voice that they have—all different generations of people are more accepting of a child’s idea, like “wow, she’s only eight and she thought of that.” There’s something about children and the younger generation that affects people, that really gets to them.
KOTG: Are the children and youth today more involved because of the Internet and social media?
Matthew: Social media opens the door—it expands their network. Young people have the ability to connect with other people who are also inspired, who share their passion, but are not necessarily living close or in their community.
I notice my (younger) sisters have more awareness of things that are going on. They are very open to everything. They know that what is happening (with the environment) is wrong. Once they get inspired about one of these topics, it consumes them.
KOTG: So, as far as sitting an adult down in a chair and talking to them, what would a kid say?
Matthew: That their decisions—the adults and many generations before ours—have directly affected what is going on. The time to do something about it is now!
**Special thanks goes out to IS Foundation for all of your support! And thanks to Ian Somerhalder for inspiring youth every day, and for taking the time to help with the design contest.