Every day, we see a problem we would like to fix. A piece of rubbish in a green, grassy park. Plastic water bottles buried in the sand at the beach. A garbage bin overflowing onto the street. A skinny, stray dog. A homeless person on a cold day.

These problems seem impossible for one person to change. But we can fix them, if we each do our part – one step at a time.

The practical guide You Can Change the World by Aussie author Lucy Bell is designed to empower you to make changes in their lives to help make a difference in the world.


Filled with information, ideas and activities, and interspersed with features on amazing children around the world, this book will show you how to:

– Avoid single-use plastics
– Throw a plastic-free party
– Make a compost bin and reduce waste
– Start a herb garden
– Grow bee-friendly flowers
– Learn about where their food comes from
– Be kinder to others, share and donate


Visit booktopia.com.au to order your copy and start changing the world!


1. Hi Lucy! So what made you want to write the book?

I know a lot of kids (and adults) who are anxious about the state of the world. They want to do something to help, but aren’t sure how to start, or they think the problems are so big that there’s nothing they can do – and so they do nothing at all!

I think people also believe there’s nothing they can do as individuals that will make a difference. I wanted this book to show those people that no matter how small or big you are, you can have an impact, even if it’s just in your part of the world. When you make positive change, you inspire others in your community to do the same, and those small changes lead to much bigger ones.

2. Did you find out anything surprising when doing your research?

Before I started writing this book, I thought that when you put plastic in the recycling bin it actually got recycled. It turns out this isn’t true, and less than 10% of our plastic is actually being recycled. The rest gets sent to landfill or overseas.

I had also never considered soft plastics before – that’s any kind of plastic that you can scrunch up into a ball. This plastic can’t be recycled in the normal way.

When you put something in your bin, it’s easy to think that it disappears off to Garbage Land. But all rubbish has to go somewhere. In short, it’s best to try to avoid using plastic as much as you can to keep our planet clean.

3. The book is filled with inspiring kids from across the globe. Who inspires you?

All of the young people and activists around the world who are fighting for change, and also the people who care so profoundly about the natural world; like David Attenborough and Jane Goodall, who have been inspiring people for generations and still do today. The fear of losing our forests, oceans and animals is very real, and it’s something that should inspire all of us to take action in the ways that we can.

4. How has the world changed since you were a kid?

I remember feeling worried about global warming and climate change even when I was a kid, 20 years ago. But it always felt like something that would happen so many millions of years in the future that we didn’t need to bother with it – and a lot of people didn’t even believe climate change was real.

These people still exist, but in the past few years, I’ve noticed a rapid increase in the feelings of anxiety about our planet, as people around the world have accepted that climate change is happening, and it’s impacting us now; from uncontrollable bushfires and floods, to longer and longer droughts. The feeling of restlessness and impatience to do something is growing in the community, but instead of adults leading the charge to make change, it seems that the movement is being particularly led by this new generation of teenagers who are doing incredible things – and they are being listened to in a way they never have been before.

5. What gives you hope for the future?

All the young activists, who are so educated, passionate and inspiring in the way that they don’t give up on the fight for their future and the future of our beautiful planet. Today’s kids understand that we are part of the natural world and need to nurture it, not exploit it.



We’re giving away five copies of this brilliant book. Click here to find out how to enter.




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