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Think We – Day 5:

September 27, 2010

In the week leading up to Free the Children‘s We Day, I will be posting one reason each day why I “think WE.” This is day five.

I realized this morning that in celebrating why I think we, I haven’t mentioned why We Day itself is so important to me.

I have been to two We Days, and my favourite We Day moment didn’t happen on stage. Last year at We Day in Toronto, I spent the day with a representative from one of Free the Children’s sponsors. The representative was sharing a box with one of my favourite Free the Children speakers, a former child soldier named Michel Chikwanine. They were sitting together watching the show and chatting between acts. Within a few minutes of talking, they were both in tears.

The sponsor was supposed to have a meet and greet session with a celebrity guest later in the afternoon. I crouched down next to her to let her know that the meeting time had been changed, and she smiled and said “Actually, if it’s okay, I’d rather stay here and talk to Michel.”

It was incredibly inspiring to see this sponsor so interested in hearing Michel’s stories. For me, the best things about We Day are the small things – the compassion, the buzz of being surrounded by 18,000 youth who are working towards the same thing you are (which, when you’re in the moment, isn’t a small thing at all), and – most importantly – the stories, whether or not they’re shared on stage.

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