CORAL SPRINGS, FL – I have a question for teenagers like me: what are you passionate about?

Now is the time to find out and give back to your community.

The spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) has altered our lives in ways we never thought possible. Despite the challenges and uncertainty, it’s important to maintain normalcy during these times. With so much of our everyday lives on pause, many people, especially teenagers, have more downtime than they know what to do with.

Sign Up for Coral Springs Newsletter
Our newsletter delivers the local news that you can trust.

To prevent from going stir-crazy during quarantine, it’s important to stay busy. Although “Tiger King” is a great watch, there are other, more productive ways to spend your time, too.

As a high schooler at North Broward Prep, I’m used to heading down to the lower school every Tuesday to run a debate enrichment program for my favorite group of fifth-graders. Even at home, these kids still want their weekly hour of debate and so do I.

We moved the enrichment to take place over Zoom, a popular video conferencing platform. Even though I was worried about the transition, our first session was an absolute success; we had a tongue-twister speaking drill competition, and a persistent group of kids questioned me after I gave a speech against motorcycle riding.

If you know a high schooler or are one yourself, you might be wondering what you can do to pass the time. I highly recommend taking up some sort of volunteer work, even if it’s digital. HandsOn Broward is an excellent resource to get involved in projects that interest you, and you don’t have to risk your health to participate.

Now is a uniquely significant time to help your community, and you owe it to those around you to do what you can. Furthermore, giving up your time to help a particular cause is incredibly empowering and can act as a source of immense fulfillment, just as the fifth-grade enrichment has for me.

You should devote your time to the things you always wish you could commit to more. Whatever your interests are, embrace them and find a way to do something positive and valuable with them.

It seems as though time is standing still for a little while. Take that time and make the most of it.

Daniel Ardity is a senior at North Broward Prep who lives in Coral Springs.