As an entertainment and pop culture blogger, I’ve been to a lot of events that left me inspired and ready to make a difference in life. Nothing prepared me for 18,000 screaming youths, from a variety of schools, to show me a thing or two about making a change at We Day 2012 in Toronto, Ontario.
We Day is free of charge to the thousands of students and educators in attendance, thanks to the generous support of sponsors including National Co-Title Sponsors RBC and TELUS. Young people in attendance earn their way into the event by committing to take action on at least one local and one global issue as part of Free The Children’s year long programming.
To help youth tackle some of the most pressing issues of today, youth and educators in attendance heard from notable We Day speakers, activists and award-winning performers including:
- A performance by ONE DROP, a Cirque du Soleil Founder’s initiative
- The Honourable Roméo A. Dallaire – Lieutenant-General and author
- Shawn Desman – Platinum selling and JUNO® Award-winning recording artist
- Nelly Furtado – Grammy® and JUNO Award winner
- Jesse Giddings – Recording artist and TV personality, host of We Day Toronto
- Al Gore – Former U.S. Vice President and Nobel Laureate
- Hedley – Performance by multi-platinum, JUNO and MMVA Award-winning recording artists
- Jennifer Hudson – Academy and Grammy®Award winner
- Tyler Shaw – 2012 Coca Cola COVERS MuchMusic Video Award winner
- Martin Sheen – Emmy® and Golden Globe® Award-winning actor and activist
- The Tenors – Canadian multi-platinum vocal group
- Justin Trudeau – Canadian politician and activist
- Spencer West – Me to We motivational speaker and Free The Children ambassador
On my way home, my daughter and I had a discussion with two superintendents from the Niagara Area. We were all so impressed how the speakers spoke TO the children about the challenging issues that we face around the world opposed to speaking above them. Craig and Mark Kielburger sends the message that in order to make a change in the future it will only take a few of them to make a difference. I hope to see many of these kids return back to their schools and create mini We Day programs and take part in the Save a Penny program (see YouTube Video for more information).
I encourage all school districts to get involved as a Educational Supporter of We Day. I hope to see many of your children attend the remaining We Days happening across Canada throughout the year!
I for one would love to volunteer in Waterloo! I want to thank Telus Canada for inviting my daughter Christina, from Teen Connection, to this event. There is no one more deserving of a media pass for this event than our children, our future, our change.