START + Netsmart

Last week, START visited Netsmart COO Tom Herzog and a great team of leaders, and enjoyed a conversation rich with anecdotes about the importance of water cooler talk with coworkers, and undivided attention with clients. But we also pressed into a question that is easy to avoid: how can healthy tech use in the workplace help their organization make a difference, one person at a time? …

START + Kindcraft = Device Free Dessert!

We often get asked what makes START special. Our answer? The way our community has pressed in and grabbed hold of our vision: to raise kids be captivated by life, not screens. Last night, we got to see that vision come to life in a magical way, when we linked arms with an awesome local nonprofit, Kindcraft.

Dear Lonely Mom of Older Kids

In a recent survey, Gen Z (ages 18-22) reported the highest loneliness scores…but today’s guest blogger, Rachel Anne Ridge, reveals that teens aren’t the only ones who are lonely. For moms of older kids, ”sharenting” on social media gets complicated, and in the void, loneliness can creep in. If you are in this season of parenthood, we hope you are encouraged by Rachel’s message that you aren’t alone.

#1 Thing

This year, START has had the privilege of linking arms with the #zeroreasonswhy teen council, a local mental health campaign tackling the issue of teen suicide in Johnson County. At a recent teen council meeting, teen were asked a poignant question: “What is the number one thing adults can do to support your mental health?”

One young man’s answer stopped us in our tracks: “Put your phones down and listen to us.”

The Loneliness Epidemic | Tim DeWeese

Tim DeWeese, Director of Johnson County Mental Health, shares that while we live in the most technologically advanced society in history, recent studies have shown that young adults, ages 18-22, are the most lonely generations of Americans, more disconnected than even the nation’s elderly. “It’s imperative that we as adults model for our kids how to balance tech-time with genuine time, and promote open, honest human relationships. Ultimately, these are the foundation for a strong, healthy community.”

Phones Down for the National Championship

At START, we try not to pick favorites. But this Texas Tech team? They are making it hard! It turns out their road to the NCAA National Championship was paved by standing together and rethinking technology. This season, they got into the routine of putting away their phones at night so they could focus on achieving their goals…and getting some rest. Parents—if you are looking for a good way to start a conversation with your kids about device bedtimes, try sharing this article with them, and asking them what they think!