T. Thornton, Brigit Mendler and Adam Hicks Talk DISNEY’S FRIENDS FOR CHANGE GAMES

Disney’s FRIENDS FOR CHANGE GAMES has found a fun way for kids to learn about going “green” and being aware of their impact on the world around them.  In the games series, Disney’s hottest young actors and stars participate in the games to show how easy and fun it is to make some changes in our lives that help the planet and protect the environment. 
What is the purpose of Friends for Change?
Tiffany: Friends for Change is a Disney initiative that started 2 years ago.  This is our third year to do it.  It’s trying to get the kids involved around the world in helping the environment, and knowing what it means to go green.  There’s ideas online.  There’s a website at ProjectGreen.com which invites kids to participate as a part of this initiative and they have ideas online on how to help the environment.  So it’s games about recycling and washing your clothes in an environmentally friendly way.  So I think it will draw their attention even more so than just the games themselves.
Brigit:  I think the first step is getting the kids aware of the causes that are out there and then making it accessible and making it fun.  I think that’s the great thing about the Friends for Change games is that, first of all, the kids can realize there are ways to make saving the environment fun; and then from there to know it’s something that they can do within their own life, and then can go to Disney.com Project Green and see the different ways that they can participate.

Which teams did you play on?
Tiffany:  I hosted it, so I was not a participant in the games.  So I got to watch them.
Brigit:  I was on the yellow team.  I was part of Team Unicef and we reached over 100 countries in helping get people clean water, nutrition and healthcare. Each team has a specific color and there were 4 teams.
Adam:  I was with the green team.  So I was international causes, like wild life and wild animals.

What kinds of games were there?
Brigit:  There’s some great games and the cool thing about it is all the games had an environmentally friendly theme, so the first game was the high-energy dance off.
Tiffany: Which was so fun to watch.
Adam:  They didn’t tell us anything before the games.  So when we found out was right before we had to play.
Brigit:  It was the first thing we did on the first day.
Tiffany: The dance floor was empowered in energy meters so that is how that was judged.  Then there was washout, which was showing you how you can reduce your impact while washing your clothes.  That means like hand washing them, hanging them up to dry.  That’s a real easy one to do.  And then there was the recycler, which was fun. 
Adam:   You run on this huge hamster wheel.
Brigit: And the last thing was eco-challenge.  It’s like a relay race where each of the team members had to do something different.

Is it a big goal to get to be on the games?
Tiffany:  The games stopped the year that we all got to be on our shows.  So we didn’t get to do that. But then we got to be a part of Friends for Change, which was a great.
Brigit:  So then we were like, ‘we finally made it!’
Adam:   It was competitive.  Like on that day you could feel the tension.
Brigit:  It’s for important causes and you actually have the ability to make a difference.  So I think we all had that kind of pressure going in the back of our minds.  But really it’s an honor to be a part of something that reaches so many people and that is actually able to make a difference and get a voice out for their cause.

Is there an age range of the participants?
Tiffany:  There’s some Disney kids on the new shows. Some of them are quite a bit younger, but then there’s also the Disney Channel veterans that have been around awhile and — it’s so weird, now we’re like, ‘we’re the veterans!’

What was the whole experience like?
Brigit: We really wanted to shake it up. . . I was not surprised that Sterling Knight was so competitive.  Everyone else was like, ‘whoa, this guy is really serious.’
Adam:   I was on the green team.  The green team had David Henrie, and older kids and so we were like pretty competitive — especially Sterling Knight.  But it was friendly.  It was a friendly vibe.
Tiffany:  It was so funny ’cause there’s these little kids that are maybe like 10 or 11, and then there’s all these older guys and they’re like, ‘we want to win’ and so they were wishing they had that kind of energy of the younger kids.  They are crashing by mid-afternoon and the younger kids are like, ‘let’s keep going!’

Will you be performing at the closing ceremonies?
Tiffany:  There is a song, but it was not performed at the Friends for Change Games.  There is the new song for Friends for Change, which we just did the music video for.  When they wrap up on July 31st, during the 30-minute finale, our music video will be playing.  It’s also going to be available for download.  All the proceeds go to the different causes that Friends for Change is for.

How long did the games go on?
Tiffany:  The games were pretty long.  They were 12-hour days over 3 days.  But we’re not really sure how it will show when it airs.  It would be a long day if they showed it all at once!

In order to see how these remarkable kids are doing their part to bring attention to helping the world around them and finding smart and innovative ways to do it, be sure to check out DISNEY’S FRIENDS FOR CHANGE GAMES which returns on June 24th on Disney Channel and airs for five weeks through July 31st.

Tiffany Vogt is a contributing writer to TheTVAddict. She has a great love for television and firmly believes that entertainment is a world of wondrous adventures that deserves to be shared and explored – she invites you to join her. Please feel free to contact Tiffany at Tiffany_Vogt_2000@yahoo.com or follow her at on Twitter (@TVWatchtower).

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