As I look towards next week and my schedule of responsibilities and events, I am keeping Tuesday, October 30th clear so that I can attend We Day, coming again to Winnipeg.
We Day is a movement of young people leading local and global, social change. The We Day organizers believe that they are the first generation that can truly end the worst forms of poverty and remove the barriers to youth being agents of social change. They push forward the boundaries of charity, social entrepreneurship and create change. "It's a worldwide movement that proves anyone can change the world." In order to succeed, Free the Children and Me to We have forged a relationship, and work together through We Day.
These are the notes that I hastily scribbled at the last We Day event that I attended:
"Do all the things that you think you cannot." Mia Farrow
"Make changes in your own life." Vice President Al Gore
"When you pray, move your feet." Desmond Tutu
"Time, knowledge, compassion is available." Rick Hansen
"Age does not define what I can do." Hannah Taylor
"Redefine possible." Spencer West
Freedom, love, trust, hope." Shawn Desman
"We are the generation that we have been waiting for." Craig Kielburger
"Africa will capture your heart, but it will also break it." unknown
"There are no can'ts or won'ts, only hows." unknown
Important to me, is whether We Day practices what they preach. This is what my research unearthed:
In the past year alone, there were:
- 92,121 trees planted to offset carbon emissions
- 275,000 people inspired by Me to We speakers, books and leadership programs
- 8 summer leadership academies held across North America, inspiring 439 young leaders
- 145,600 volunteer hours served by 1,300 travellers including youth, families and corporate groups on Me to We trips
- 500 Maasai mothers in employed full-time as Artisans
So why would a Boomer like me be interested in screaming and jumping around with 18,000 youth when I could be sitting at home with a mug of coffee in my turquoise house coat? Because:
I am a shameless idealist.
I believe that we cannot inspire our children to make a difference in this world unless we stand along side them rather than watching them from the sidelines.
My premise is food=love and this does not just mean in places of the world where it is aplenty but in those areas of the earth, where it is not.
I plan on inviting my daughter who has taken classes through the Canadian School of Peacekeeping and is currently studying for her degree in International Development at the University of Winnipeg.
She is looking at Kenya as one possibility to complete her practicum and I would love to visit the Maasai Mara and perhaps volunteer with Free the Children, building schools alongside local community members.
This will likely be the only time that I will be in the same room as the President of the Soviet Union and Nobel Peace Laureate, Mikhail Gorbachev. I hear that he is a snappy dresser (JK).
The Keg Steakhouse and Bar is a sponsor so the food will be good.....
Kath's quote: "Food, like a loving touch or a glimpse of divine power, has that ability to comfort."-Norman Kolpas