Let's face it, teens can be a persuasive and passionate bunch. Despite stereotypes labeling them as apathetic couch potatoes, there are a lot of kids out there willing to fight for a cause.

Now, two organizations are joining forces to encourage kids to combine their innate media knowledge, creativity and energy to enact positive change in the world. By Kids For Kids (BKFK), a youth marketing and media company, and DoSomething.org, a resource for teenagers who want to make a difference, are challenging young people across the country to create an advertisement for a cause that matters to them.

Here's the thinking behind this contest: teens today are inundated with media messaging, so why not give them the opportunity to become the creators of a more socially-conscious media—branding the causes they care about? Aria Finger, Chief Marketing Officer at Do Something, says kids today understand the power that marketing can yield. “They're already on social networking sites touting their causes, blogging about solutions, and doing countless other things that just weren't available 10 years ago,” Finger says.

The competition gives kids the chance to think long and hard about the issues that move them, and find ways to inspire others. But, the contest also has some backbone to it - the winning campaign will receive media exposure and $10,000 in prize money.

The public service announcement (PSA) must be clever, powerful, and impactful. Entry formats may include, but aren't limited to: video, storyboards, print, online banners campaigns, and viral marketing concepts.

Contest organizers say ideas are starting to pour in from teens around the country—from teen messaging on MySpace about safe driving, to informational films teaching girls self-defense techniques, to PSA's highlighting ways students can reduce, reuse and recycle.

The Advertise Your Cause Media Challenge is open to all youth in the U.S. ages 19 and under. The contest period runs from April 1st, 2008 until 12 p.m. EST on June 30, 2008. All entries must be submitted online at www.bkfk.com. If your child is having trouble getting started, the “Idea Locker” on the BKFK site offers online tools for idea generation and brainstorming.

So, get those ideas cranking. You may just wind up with a social crusader on your hands!