SGI-Canada Holds "Youth Fest 2010" in Toronto
On May 15, 2010, SGI-Canada held a festival titled "Youth Fest 2010" at Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto, Canada. The show included a multimedia, bilingual show titled "Your Victory is My Victory" that explored how to achieve a more meaningful and rich life through challenging and overcoming difficulties. Song, dance and music comprised the performances. Two organizations, Free the Children and Me to We, were partners with SGI-Canada in this event.
The festival also commemorated several major anniversaries in SGI: the 50th anniversary of the inauguration of Daisaku Ikeda as president of the Soka Gakkai (May 3), the 50th anniversary of the establishment of SGI-Canada (October 12), the 80th anniversary of the Soka Gakkai (November 18) and the 35th anniversary of Soka Gakkai International (January 26).
The event served to launch new partnership between SGI-Canada and Free The Children and Me to We. Free The Children empowers youth to make a difference through leadership training at home and community development projects abroad. It aims to provide education to children in marginalized communities. Me to We is a social enterprise that challenges traditional methods of doing business with an emphasis on working for the sake of others and creating positive change the world. Fifty percent of the net profits from the social enterprise support the work of Free The Children
The festival also reflected themes of REACH curriculum, a high school curriculum which SGI-Canada youth developed aimed at inspiring youth to work to realize their unlimited potential and in doing so, advance with hope and a deeper sense of shared humanity. Me to We plans to use this curriculum in their school programs.
Prior to the start of the festival, Craig Kielburger, co-founder of Me to We and Free The Children, expressed his appreciation for the new partnership with SGI-Canada.
In addition, Tony Meers, SGI-Canada General Director, thanked all participants, guests and event volunteers for their dedicated efforts to make the youth festival and the REACH curriculum possible.
Some 800 youth were involved in the festival; 489 performed with the remaining participants providing behind-the-scenes support.
[Adapted from an article in the June 2010 issue of the SGI-Canada Online News; photo courtesy SGI-Canada]