I fall into step behind a line of those who will change our future. They are dressed in neon yellow t-shirts, are talking at decibels that can accurately be classified as screaming, and carry themselves with the kind of excitement normally reserved for chocolate dipped ice cream. The misty Vancouver air wraps tight around us as we cross the street, just blocks from Rogers arena. On the other side of the crosswalk our line merges with another group, and caught in their midst I arrive at We Day 2013.
We Day is about positivity. It is about inspiration. It is about empowering children to believe that their actions make a difference. That they are capable of impacting the world. We hear from Martin Luther King III, Romeo Dallaire, and Kofi Annan. The messages presented for the 18,000 kids filling the entire arena are simple:
Stand up to bullies. Be individuals. Create change. Give. Achieve your goals.
It’s a full day of entertainment, motivation, and a chance to connect with other kids from all over the place. It is “the ultimate field trip” no question about it. Up in the Change Heroes’ box I take it all in. Looking out at the sea of youthful energy, I get as much inspiration from watching the kids as I do listening to the world class speakers.
These kids are being sold a story, and like any big event the messages are highly controlled, the performers selected with minute attention to detail – right down to the lyrics of the songs performed. The difference here, is that unlike most corporate control that sells us the story of needing stuff, Me to We sells impressionable youth the story that giving to others is cool. They are selling the story that there is a way to get involved in giving to a cause each of us passionately care about. They are selling the story that together we can make the impact that is needed to truly change the world.
I’m inspired, and let me tell you, so are the 18,000 kids who were invited to be part of this awesome day of greatness. Bring it on future – we are going to be ready for you!