I’m not sure if we’ve established this here on the blog, but I’ve been known to be a little..ummm…emotional.
You want to see waterworks? It won’t take much.
A heartfelt speech at a wedding.
A compelling YouTube video.
A life changing moment (wedding proposal, first day at school, kid off to college).
A gift of any kind.
Want to really see the sprinklers come out?
Show me kids.
Kids realizing their power.
Kids full of passion and purpose.
Kids living without fear of what we jaded adults might think and overcoming incredible odds.
Kids trying to make a difference in the world.
Yours. Mine. Stranger’s. Doesn’t matter.
I’ll cry every time.
But this Friday holds a real challenge. Thousands of potential kid-related waterworks moments…in one room.
For the first time ever, I’m going to “We Day.”
We Day is the annual event put on by Free the Children. The organization most famous for the Canadian brothers behind it (Marc and Craig Kielburger) brings together kids from across the country at events in major cities.
You can’t buy a ticket to the musical and inspirational extravaganza. Instead kids have to earn their way to a ticket by having committed to and completed one local and one international act of charity. About 40,000 students from across the country are expected to be in attendance at We Day Toronto on Friday and We Day Vancouver next month. Thousands of others will likely be watching online. Among the speakers and performers at this year’s event: Serena Ryder , Demi Lovato, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, former Secretary-General of the United Nations Kofi Annan and human rights advocate Martin Luther King III.
My invitation came via Roxanne Joyal, the powerhouse and impressively committed co-CEO of Me to We who is making big changes in the lives of families around the world through her work with Masai women . I had the privilege of meeting her and witnessing her amazing work first hand while I was in Kenya this summer.
I was also invited by Telus Communications, who are one of the Title sponsors again this year. They encouraged me to bring a child and so Ethan, 11, will be joining me on Friday.
He’s particularly excited to be able to see his pal Hannah Alper wow the crowd.
And yup, I’ll be packing a box of tissues and my waterproof mascara too.
Expect some more information and photos here on the blog once I’ve had a chance to process it all.
And if you want to follow along while we experience it you can find us tweeting @greenwooddavis on Twitter and on sharing at facebook.com/globetrottingmama.
You can bet that Ethan will be sharing his experiences on the blog as well. (You don’t get a day off school for free around here.)
To follow the official event hashtags follow #WeDay and #TELUSforWeDay on Twitter.
I love a fellow waterworks maker. My 11 yo is going with her school, and I’m going as a blogger. First time for both of us. CANNOT WAIT.
Hi there! Just wanted to touch base with you! We have a connection through your dad! Wally is/was my husbands social worker back in the day at Mt. Sinai! (He was on Dr. Bell’s team!). My husband is Chris Ross. Your dad just called my husband the other day! Out of the blue after all these years! Wally told us to check out your blog! We were just looking at it and the first story we came across was the one about the upcoming we day! Get this, our 11 year old is going! She was picked to go with her school! One of 13 students! Her name is Gabby Panth. She is so excited about this event! Hope it goes well for you! All the best!!! Tammy
Small world! Gabby is going to love it, I bet. I have yet to meet a child who went and didn’t. Thanks so much for reading!
Heather, I promise, this will be one of those moments for you. The kids all leave the changed and as mother, you will too. From experience, I can say this. The power of community and strength and possibility in that stadium will move you – to tears. Hannah will be happy to hear that you and Ethan will be there.
Candace, I have no doubt. Just seeing what they did with families in Kenya in less than 24 hours made me a we-liever. ;) So proud of Hannah! Ethan can’t wait.