Ridgefield Park, NJ — Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Samsung Electronics America partnered with a shared commitment to empowering youth to explore a future in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Together, they developed the Climate Superstars Challenge, an environmental contest designed to ignite STEM interest among kids and teens and encourage youth to raise awareness about climate change. The Climate Superstars Challenge is the first challenge of its kind that aims to motivate young people to do their part by taking action to help protect the environment. After completing varying sustainability activities for seven weeks, Club members at the Boys & Girls Clubs Seminole Tribe of Florida were selected as the grand prize winner of the Samsung Climate Superstars Challenge.
Now in its second year, the Climate Superstars Challenge engages youth ages 11-13 and 184 Boys & Girls Clubs across the country participated in this year’s contest. As a part of Boys & Girls Clubs of America‘s strategy to ensure all members graduate from high school STEM ready, Club members that participated in the challenge completed weekly activities centered on core themes such as improving energy-efficiency, conserving water and reducing waste. All participants completed primary tasks such as identifying energy-efficient, ENERGY STAR products and planting trees, and Clubs were also encouraged to be creative in the completing of their tasks.
Club members at the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Westfield created an interpretive dance video to showcase the ease of taking care of the earth by picking up litter; members at the Ramstein Air Base Youth Programs teamed up with their tech lab to recycle old computers and to mark recyclable electronics for proper disposal; and members at the Boys & Girls Club of Kingman hosted a recycle party to get other members of their Club and community engaged in preserving the planet. Each approach showcased their growing understanding of factors that contribute to environment breakdown as well an innovative ways to implement safeguards.
At the end of the contest, the Hollywood Rez Torch Club members at the Boys & Girls Clubs Seminole Tribe of Florida exceeded the activities necessary to win the Samsung Climate Superstar title and garnered bonus points for their commitment to showcasing their understanding of the value of reusing materials for different reasons. They created a rocket made from a pasta box to use as a learning tool, and also made a fun snow globe created by filling an old glass jar with water, glitter and sealing it. The Club members also had an opportunity to visit and tour the Seminole Tribe of Florida Public Works facility on the Hollywood Reservation, giving them an opportunity to learn more about utility installation and maintenance as well as meet people with STEM careers.
As the Samsung Climate Superstar, the Boys & Girls Clubs Seminole Tribe of Florida will receive an technology makeover featuring several ENERGY STAR certified products, including two 55 inch Ultra High Def LED Smart TVs, three Virtual Reality devices, thirty Galaxy tablets, one Gear 360 Camera and thirty notebooks at a value of more than $25,000.* Participants received prizes throughout the three stages of the Challenge, totaling more than $45,000* of technology. In addition, a celebration event was held at the Club to reward members for their outstanding efforts to increase awareness about climate change within their community. During the event, the technology makeover was revealed to Club members and they had the opportunity to experience the new ENERGY STAR equipment for the first time. Representatives from Samsung and Boys & Girls Clubs of America joined local Club executives in congratulating the winning participants.
“Encouraging kids and teens to take action to help protect the environment is crucial for the future of our planet,” said Ann Woo, Senior Director of Corporate Citizenship, Samsung Electronics America. “Our partnership with Boys & Girls Clubs of America and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provides kids and teens access to information that will equip them with the knowledge to not only take direct action to protect the planet, but will also empower them as stewards of global sustainability to share what they’ve learned with peers, family and the communities where they live.”
“This is the second year that we at EPA’s ENERGY STAR program have worked with Samsung on Climate Superstars,” says Rosemarie Stephens Booker, ENERGY STAR Appliances and Electronics Program Manager. “We continue to value this creative and effective approach to educating and empowering young people with respect to this critical environmental issue and how saving energy can make a big difference.”
“We’re excited to have an opportunity to help our kids and teens make the connection to STEM through this environmental challenge,” said Rebecca Bryant, Unit Director at the Boys & Girls Clubs Seminole Tribe of Florida. “The value of showing our Clubs members real STEM jobs in action makes the idea of pursuing a career in one of these fields tangible, and a viable option for their future.”
For event images and footage from the Samsung Climate Superstars grand prize celebration, visit news.samsung.com/us/.
*Estimated Retail Value
About Samsung Electronics America, Inc.
Headquartered in Ridgefield Park, NJ, Samsung Electronics America, Inc. (SEA), is a recognized innovation leader in consumer electronics design and technology. A wholly owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., SEA delivers a broad range of digital consumer electronics, mobile products and wearables, wireless infrastructure, IT and home appliance products. Samsung is the market leader for HDTVs in the U.S and one of America’s fastest growing home appliance brand. To discover more, please visit www.samsung.com.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of America
For more than 150 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA.org) has enabled young people most in need to achieve great futures as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Today, more than 4,200 Clubs serve nearly 4 million young people annually through Club membership and community outreach. Clubs are located in cities, towns, public housing and on Native lands throughout the country, and serve military families in BGCA-affiliated Youth Centers on U.S. military installations worldwide. They provide a safe place, caring adult mentors, fun, friendship, and high-impact youth development programs on a daily basis during critical non-school hours. Priority programs emphasize academic success, good character and citizenship, and healthy lifestyles. In a Harris Survey of alumni, 54 percent said the Club saved their lives. National headquarters are located in Atlanta. Learn more at Facebook and Twitter.
About USEPA Energy Star
ENERGY STAR® is the simple choice for energy efficiency. For more than 20 years, people across America have looked to EPA’s ENERGY STAR program for guidance on how to save energy, save money, and protect the environment. Behind each blue label is a product, building, or home that is independently certified to use less energy and cause fewer of the emissions that contribute to climate change. Today, ENERGY STAR is the most widely recognized symbol for energy efficiency in the world, helping families and businesses save $430 billion on utility bills, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2.7 billion metric tons since 1992. Join the millions who are already making a difference at energystar.gov.