In this edition of OWL Voices, Maia shares her We Day Vancouver experience.
Dear OWL Readers,
“As a leader, if you don’t follow yourself, who will follow you?”
On October 22nd, 2014, I got on a bus to Rogers Arena along with 20,000 other youth and educators for an event that would inspire us for the rest of our lives.
This was We Day.
As soon as I stepped into the stadium, I could feel the power of We. All 20,000 faces in the crowd were united with goals to create change for local and global issues. Together, our voices were heard. Together, our actions made an impact. This was the Me to We generation.
The day started with a traditional opening ceremony and prayer from representatives from the First Nation Musqueam peoples. We met the two co-founders of Me to We and Free the Children, Craig and Marc Kielburger. Selena Gomez, our host, was welcomed with thunderous applause and cheering. They told us that this year is the Year of Empowerment. This means 4 different themes – Economic, Technological, Social, and Educational Empowerment. There were many speakers that each had his or her own unique story to share. Each told us how it related to empowerment.
A highlight was Mama Helen, who came all the way from Kenya to tell us how an inspiring group of women had come together through Economic Empowerment.
Another amazing speaker was Ashley Rose Murphy, who was diagnosed with HIV at birth. She was truly motivational because she never got discouraged. Instead, she helped others affected by HIV and AIDS all over the world. At the same time, she was motivated by them.
The other speakers included award winning Olympians, famous actors, and kids just like us with big goals to change the world. There were also lots of cool videos and performers. Jennifer Lopez arrived as a surprise to wrap up the event! We were also encouraged to find our spark, and use it for the greater good. For example, I aim to use writing to express my ideas.
I wish that everyone could attend We Day. If this was possible, we would all be inspired to be responsible citizens taking action for a better global community and a sustainable future.
Thanks for sharing your experience with us, Maia. It sounds like We Day had a huge impact on you!
If you’ve been to We Day before, tell us about it in the comments below!