WE Day Connect is made possible by RBC and TELUS and powered by Microsoft
Today, hundreds of thousands of students and teachers from around the world will join WE Day Connect, an interactive global virtual celebration of social good. The 60-minute digital event will engage students and teachers in classrooms in over 80 countries in a service-learning webcast that explores some of the world’s most pressing issues such as cyberbullying, sustainable development, social entrepreneurship and using technology for good. With support from RBC and TELUS, and powered by Microsoft, WE Day Connect will be broadcasted live from various locations around the globe including the Microsoft Studios in Redmond, Washington; along with student highlights in Baltimore, Maryland; Moncton, New Brunswick; Milton, Ontario; Narok County, Kenya and Tokyo, Japan. Since the inaugural WE Day Connect in Spring 2018, the online event has reached over 750,000 students and teachers globally.
“By leveraging technology, we’re connecting youth from across the globe to have critical conversations, share ideas, and create solutions for some of the today’s most pressing issues that they are passionate about; the possibilities for change are endless,” said Craig Kielburger, WE Charity co-founder. “Through WE Day Connect students and educators are given the tools they need to deepen service-learning in the classroom and continue to foster local and global change.”
More than a one-day event, WE Day Connect is part of the free, year-long service learning program WE Schools. Designed to enhance a school or community’s existing social initiatives or spark new ones, WE Schools provides teachers with educational resources and action campaigns to encourage students to further their curricular learning and develop life skills to succeed beyond the classroom. Leveraging technology for good, WE School’s digital evolution has been made possible thanks to the implementation of Microsoft’s cloud-based services and virtual program platforms, such as Teams, Skype for Business and OneNote, which has accelerated WE’s ability to globally scale it’s WE Schools’ model and impact thousands more by providing free resources virtually. Since WE School’s digital launch in 2016, an increase in virtual access to WE Schools’ offerings has seen a 30 per cent growth with group participation, as well as growth from 37 countries to over 120 countries.
WE Day Connect brings together remarkable change-makers to inspire global viewers by sharing how they are taking action to change the world. Some examples include:
Riverview, New Brunswick, Canada
Young people in Riverview took part in the WE Are Social Entrepreneurs program, made possible by RBC. WE Are Social Entrepreneurs is designed to help youth take their ideas for social change and bring them to life. These world-changers proposed a plan to reduce the impact of light poverty and connect with their peers around the world impacted by this global issue. Through ideation, students used 3D printing and electrical engineering to create lights that were field-tested by their peers solving real problems for real people while building relationships around the world. Their social enterprise, Current Generation, reduces the impact of light poverty in alignment with the UN Sustainable Development goals of quality Education & Clean Energy.
Milton, Ontario, Canada
More than 1,000 youth in Milton came together to through WE Rise Above, to rally against cyberbullying. WE Rise Above is an initiative that encourages youth to stand up against cyberbullying and spread the power of positivity. Young people are raising awareness on the impact of online words and actions and promoting positive online behaviour. The #EndBullying rally was made possible with the help of the WE Rise Above grant, funded by TELUS. Young change-makers spoke out about the impact of online bullying, followed by surprise appearances by WE Charity’s co-founder, Craig Kielburger, alongside motivational speaker, Spencer West.
Renton, WA, United States
Inspired by an initiative that uses technology to make communities more inclusive, WE Are One which is made possible by Microsoft, young people in Renton are tackling the UN Global Goals for Sustainable Development, with a strong focus on Quality Education. By using Artificial Intelligence language translation, these youths are documenting the processes of their work and demonstrating how technology for good can be used as a tool to support human skills. Their work has been used in several countries to drive educational transformation.
WE Day is part of WE—a family of organizations that makes doing good, doable. WE is made up of WE Charity, empowering domestic and international change, ME to WE, a social enterprise that creates socially conscious products and experiences to help support the charity, and WE Day, filling stadiums around the world with the greatest celebration of social good.
WE Charity was founded by New York Times Bestselling authors Craig Kielburger and Marc Kielburger, in 1995, with a mission to fight child labor. WE has since grown and evolved to address the root cause of child labor – extreme poverty. In the past 24 years, WE’s programs have empowered over 1 million people with clean water, built 1,500 schools and schoolrooms overseas, and empowered more than 200,000 children with access to education.
WE enables youth and families to better the world—supporting 7,200+ local and global causes by volunteering millions of hours of service, shopping daily with an impact, and raising millions of dollars that directly benefit their local communities and the world.
WE’s headquarters is based in downtown Toronto at the WE Global Learning Centre, a service and social innovation accelerator for young people, leading them to become the next generation of leaders and towards a brighter future.