4,000 youth unite for global change at Leadership Now!



    
    Marc Kielburger and Severn Cullis-Suzuki inspire students to become
    environmental leaders
    

    TORONTO, Jan. 12 /CNW/ - More than 4,000 grade 5 to 8 students and
teachers from the Peel District School Board will gather at the Powerade
Centre on Jan. 13 for Leadership Now!, a one-day student conference on
leadership, the environment and global citizenship. Marc Kielburger and Severn
Cullis-Suzuki will deliver keynote messages on how youth can make a difference
on a global scale.
    "We want to give students the chance to explore their leadership
potential as early as possible," says Janet McDougald, chair of the Peel
board. "Leadership Now! is an opportunity to inspire student leaders-to show
students that they can be advocates for change and be part of something that
is helping to shape their generation."

    
    Leadership Now! will also include:

    -  a presentation by Peel Environmental Youth Alliance (PEYA)
    -  display booths from non-profit and community partners
    -  litter-free lunch
    -  live music
    -  MCs from Absolute Leadership
    -  special guest Derek Forgie, comedian and activist
    

    "Youth today have an incredible amount of power when it comes to making
social change at local and global levels," says Marc Kielburger, chief
executive director, Free The Children and Me to We. "It is my hope that after
today's conference we will have inspired and empowered 4,000 more youth to
take action and stand up for the issues that are most important to them, while
choosing to live as socially responsible citizens, knowing youth have the
power to change the world."
    The event has been planned to be as green as possible. There are no
tickets being handed out and all promotion was done electronically. Students
will bring litter-free lunches and reusable water bottles which can be filled
with local tap water at one of the many water stations that are being supplied
by the Region of Peel. The Region of Peel will also be supplying green bins
for organic waste.
    "In the past century, we prioritized short-term gain," say Severn
Cullis-Suzuki, environmental activist. "Now, when we hear about climate
change, dwindling natural resources, pollution, what we're really hearing
about is the future of kids, of today's youth. Our society needs to make that
connection. We need youth to tell decision makers and all adults of what is
truly at stake, to wake people up to our true priorities. I hope that at this
event these students will know how much their voices and actions are needed
for change."
    The conference is part of the Peel board's Student Leadership for Global
Development program which is produced with the support of the Government of
Canada through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).
    Notes McDougald, "We're very thankful to the Canadian International
Development Agency for helping to enhance global education in the Peel board.
Through CIDA's Global Classroom Initiative, we've been able to provide our
students and teachers with these programs for the past seven years."
    The Powerade Centre is located at 7575 Kennedy Rd. S. in Brampton. The
doors open at 9:30 a.m., and the event begins at 10:30 a.m.

    
    Media contact: Sylvia Link, Manager of Communications and Strategic
                   Partnership Support Services, 905-890-1010
                   (or 1-800-668-1146), ext. 2814

                   Janet McDougald, chair of the board, Peel District School
                   Board, 905-278-1402

                   For Marc Kielburger, contact Elysia Blake,
                   elysia@freethechildren.com or 416-925-5894

    Reference:     Scott LaMantia, Communications Project Co-ordintator,
                   905-890-1010 (or 1-800-668-1146), ext. 2817,
                   scott.lamantia@peelsb.com

    Note to media: Visit www.peelschools.org for event agenda.
                   Media attending the event should enter through the
                   Founders entrance, and check in at the registration table.
                   Marc Kielburger will be available for interviews from
                   12 to 12:30 p.m.
                   Severn Cullis-Suzuki will be available for interviews
                   following the event from 1:30 to 1:40 p.m.

    For more information, please visit www.peelschool.org/slgd
    





For further information:

For further information: Media contact: Sylvia Link, Manager of
Communications and Strategic Partnership Support Services, (905) 890-1010 (or
1-800-668-1146), ext. 2814; Janet McDougald, chair of the board, Peel District
School Board, (905) 278-1402; For Marc Kielburger, contact Elysia Blake,
elysia@freethechildren.com or (416) 925-5894


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