Lazy, unmotivated, and weak are a few of the stereotypical characteristics that unfortunately define our youth. It might come as a surprise that 10,000 students are expect to be in attendance at the Canadian Tire Centre for National We Day on April 9th, an event to encourage youth to lead and create local and global change. This year’s event is significantly larger than last year’s, which hosted 4,000 attendees.
“We are thrilled to be welcoming 10,000 students, educators and supporters at our second National We Day in our nation’s capital,” said We Day Executive Director, Dalal Al-Waheidi. “Filled with powerful educational speeches, inspirational moments and show-stopping performances, from world leaders like Queen Noor of Jordan to the JUNO Award winning band Simple Plan, the day promises to inspire and further empower the young people in attendance to become active agents of change.”
Students cannot buy tickets for this event. In the spirit of taking action, students must earn their tickets by participating in the We Act program, a full-year engagement program that offers resources and support for groups or individuals to turn their inspiration into action.
The first We Day took place at the Ricoh Coliseum in Toronto, where 8,000 youth were in attendance. 2014 will mark the third time We Day has come to Ottawa and the event is showing no signs of slowing down.
This year, We Day is coming to 13 major cities across Canada, the US, and the UK. Annually, the event is attended by 180,000 students from over 4,400 schools. They are brought together for this inspirational event that doesn’t focus on or compete with one charity or non-profit organization, but encourages young people to take action on any issue they are interested in.
Free The Children, an international charity, organizes the event. They are also an educational partner, with over 2.3 million young people involved in their programs. Founded in 1995 by Craig Kielburger, Free The Children would like to see a world where all young people are free to achieve their fullest potential.
Since 2007, We Act participants have taken action to reach accomplishments such as raising $37 million for 1,000 causes, and achieving a total of 9.6 million hours of volunteering for local and global causes. In addition, 80% of We Act alumni reported volunteering for more than 150 hours each year, showing that the effects of this inspirational day instill a long-lasting wish to take action and change the world.
For more information about National We Day visit: http://www.weday.com/we-day-events/we-day-cities/we-day-national/
Written by Michael Myers and Alexa Batitis