Teen in quarantine launches project to inform peers, support Russian-American community

Julia Galperin, a rising junior from San Diego, has utilized the COVID crisis to create opportunities for teens and make a difference in her community.

A month before quarantine began in the U.S., Julia Galperin began social isolation and bed rest at her home in San Diego due to a serious concussion. And when the stay-at-home order was issued in the state of California, Galperin was inspired to use this time to make a difference in her community.

With a recent interest in journalism, she began a blog to share information for teenagers in San Diego County about COVID-19, with the goal of keeping her peers well informed about the developing crisis.

Initially this began as an individual project, but quickly evolved into a team effort. After asking several friends to assist her in developing the blog, she now runs a website, named QuaranTEEN, with a team of ten peers.

QuaranTEEN focuses on a wide range of topics, including science, psychology, politics, the arts, and more, looking for young writers who can contribute varying content to gain a broad perspective.

Galperin hopes to educate others while also sharing personal perspectives of teenagers during the pandemic.

To support and promote the Russian American community, she features Russian owned business and restaurants in San Diego County, hoping to increase sales, especially during this time of financial hardship.

QuaranTEEN was one of the first websites to feature the Pushkin restaurant in San Diego being guarded from looters by the restaurant owner, Ike Gazaryan and friends.

In addition to content development, Galperin hopes to support nonprofits and humanitarian causes. With her team, she has raised funds for various nonprofits and personally volunteers with the organizations they have fundraised for.

As her project expands, she hopes to open an online store with QuaranTEEN merchandise and donate the proceeds to non-profit organizations in her community and around the world.

As her project and ambition grows, Julia wants to create a resilient Russian-American community by expanding the impact of QuaranTEEN with powerful content and by creating effective sources of funding for non-profits.

Written by Liza Kotar