WE DAY (and how youth can change the world)

My little brother (why do I still say ‘little’?  I mean younger) happens to date a girl named Lily.  Now….I like Lily a lot.  She’s smart and fun and amazing with the kids.  She went to a Montessori school (yay!), was on ESPN (I mean, I think….I’m not 100% positive on the television station, but I’m going with ESPN) for dance, has incredible fashion, her mom is Penni,  and she works for a non profit called Free the Children.

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Free the Children “believes in a world where all children are free to achieve their fullest potential as agents of change.”  They help young people in our world make a difference through action.  Adopt a Village is a program they do that allows communities to break the cycle of poverty and become self sustaining.  Check out the site to learn more about it.  It’s pretty amazing. They empower young people to make a difference — to be the ones to help others and make change.

So anyway, Lily invited Maria down for WE Day. Yeah, we totally have an “in” and were so lucky that she thought of Maria.  But you can’t buy tickets to WE Day.  Kids have to earn them through service in their community and reporting back to Free the Children with their progress and plans, etc.

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Let’s look back on Maria’s service projects, shall we? (remember that she came up with these all on her own)

– Back to School Circus :  She organized a back to school circus in our front yard and the admission fee was a school supply to be donated to the YWCA.

– Booth at Funky Finds:  she sold veggies and baked goods at last year’s Funky Finds vendor fair and donated the money to the animal shelter and the year before she donated the money to the Gina Queesenberry Foundation for breast cancer patients/survivors/families in our valley.

– She sold loom bracelets to raise money to buy an animal for a family through Heifer International.

– She created information note cards and had them available at the school for people to take to raise awareness for endangered species.

– She had numerous lemonade stands “for charity” <—- (she kept spending the money on more cookies and lemonade…she made $0.)

Maria earned her invite for sure.  But she’s not the only kid out there who has a heart big enough to care for the world.  And WE Day proves that!  Thousands of children attend and schools from all over participate.  These kids are making a difference.

I’ve been looking at the line up and I’m a little jealous that Danny’s the one taking her.

J Cole, Big Sean, Selena Gomez, Seth Rogan, Magic Johnson, Rico Rodriguez, Laila Ali, Martin Luther King III, Martin Sheen, The Tenors and….

ORLANDO BLOOM!!!  I’m missing Orlando Bloom, you guys.

But Maria’s not.  And she’s super stoked.  She feels honored (because she’s totally that kid) and will come back incredibly inspired, I know this.  And I hope she can come back and inspire even more kids and together they can all change the world.  Because kids can.  And they do.

Check out Free the Children here:

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