‘Living every day with positivity and purpose.' The WE Movement.
WE Day, what is this WE Day thing your family went to?
Our family has been very fortunate to participate in WE Day through our daughters' school and thankfully for our connection with TELUS. A title sponsor for the invite-only event that is funded by sponsorship and a number of volunteers to celebrate students across our nation for their positive local and global contributions.
In short, it's one heck of an energetic and inspiring day that launches another year of action for social change. As parents, we were elated to discover the opportunities and resources available to our youth.
5 Fascinating Facts about the WE Movement
1. Twelve 12 Year Olds
Started by a 12-year-old Canadian boy 20 years ago. The group of Twelve 12-year-olds was formed after Craig Keilburger came across an article in his local Ontario newspaper about another 12-year-old boy from India who was murdered for standing up for child labor.
Craig had the courage to create awareness and was initially inspired by his older brother Marc who first introduced Craig to human rights issues. His group of 12-year-olds consisted of him and his 11 classmates who met on Saturdays, but the pivotal point came when he traveled to South Asia for 7 weeks later that year to educate himself further on standing up for the rights of children. Free The Children was born. 20 years later the twelve 12 years old's Free The Children initiative has developed into WE, a global movement that impacts local and global causes ranging from health, education, environment, nutrition, social enterprise, and the list goes on. Empowering everyone to be a force for change through resources and opportunities such as WE Take Action Camps, WE Schools, WE Villages, WE trips, WE Charity and ME to WE. And here's how it all began…
2. You must earn your ticket and be invited to WE Day
WE Day was created to celebrate the students who have taken action on one local and one global cause. Though it is technically a one-day event, it is a year-long service program full of learning and developing leadership skills toward becoming active citizens. The WE Day experience wouldn't be possible without the support from brands such as TELUS and RBC. WE Day has grown to 15 events in Canada, the U.S. and the U.K., attended annually by 200,000 students from over 10,000 schools. Because of sponsors like Telus, RBC, West Jet, etc, students from all over the province have the opportunity to attend for no cost to them. A full list of sponsors can be found here.
WE Day is not just a concert, significant topics such as cyber-bullying, transgender, child labor, addiction, physical disabilities, refugees, body image, special needs, eating disorders, mental health, overcoming adversity are shared from stage to give hope and create awareness. Since 2007 youth involved in WE Schools have raised $79 million for more than 6500 local and global organizations (WOW!), 27.6 million hours logged volunteering for local and global causes (UHM HELLO!), and almost 10 million pounds of food collected for local food banks (HECK YES!). WE create change, no doubt about it.
Watching this moves me inside with gratitude, joy and a desire to participate and do my part. We learned that no presenter is paid for being a part of WE Day. They have either reached out personally or have accepted the invitation to contribute to the WE Day experience.
3. Goes Beyond just Students and Schools
NOW WE Schools can be embraced and is supported on beyond just students at the school. As Free The Children evolved to WE, WE Schools has expanded to now offer resources and guidance for WE at Home or WE Families, even WE at Work. The WE Families Kit is very cool, great value involves all ages and is a fantastic way to get started. Watch this video and begin the conversation to take action today, because it really does start with us moms and dads, grandmas and grandpas, uncles and aunts…
Possibly even consider a WE Family Trip and travel with a purpose.
4. Products with a Positive Purpose
Consider your gift giving or receiving (great things to put on your wish list, hint, hint) now has a purpose beyond the individual receiving the item. From jewelry to school supplies, ‘ME to WE is an innovative social enterprise that provides products that make an impact, empowering people to change the world with their everyday consumer choices.'
One of our favorite things about ME to WE is how WE Charity empowers ‘people to fish’ for themselves. It is not a handout and short term solution. It empowers through a helping hand enabling and aiding to lift ourselves up personally. Impacting positive change and creating sustainability. Self-worth.
AND you can actually track the impact of your specific purchase by simply entering the individual code provided on each item.
5. Relative Topics
As briefly mentioned in point number 2, WE present and opens discussion on a number of different topics. Cyber-bullying was a hot topic at this years WE Day, with TELUS leading the charge with the #RiseAbove campaign supported by the #TELUSwise initiative. Rise Above was a topic that spoke to our family because keeping our kids informed in a world and our social media lifestyle is something we take very seriously. TELUS believes it’s part of their responsibility to ensure the digital space is a safe place and want to help put an end to cyber-bullying, and we want to do our part as well.
For more information on #RiseAbove and cyber-bullying, visit TELUS Rise Above.
How to get involved with the WE Movement
- The WE.org website
- DONATE here
- The WE Day APP
- Submit your application to volunteer
- Support the companies that support WE.
Is there a specific pillar that inspires you to create change and get involved on a local and or global scale?
Whether you have children or not, we can all make a difference in some shape or form.
Take the Pledge and instantly make a difference by clicking here. (or click the button below)
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