We Stand Up!

Students Standing Up at We Stand Up

Close to 1,400 students from 30 local elementary and secondary schools will be joining their peers from four regional school boards as they learn how to be better human beings at the We Stand Up Student conference at the Thunder Bay Community Auditorium on Wednesday, May 4. The third installment of the student run conference will be focused on the things, big and small, that we can all do to be better human beings. A number of energetic and renowned national and local speakers make up the exciting line up!

Speakers at We Stand Up include:

  • Chris Tse
    Chris Tse is a Canadian spoken word poet, motivational speaker, and hip hop artist of Chinese descent. A speaker for Me to We, he has toured extensively with the Kenyan Boys Choir and in We Days across Canada. He placed second at the 2011 Poetry Slam World Cup and was the former captain of the Capital Slam team that won the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word championship.
  • Talitha Tolles
    Talitha Tolles is a motivational speaker and leadership coordinator with ME to WE and the ambassador for the WE Stand Together campaign, bridging gaps between Aboriginal and Non-Aboriginal youth everywhere.
  • Wali Shah
    Wali Shah Selected by Plan Canada as one of Canada’s Top 20 Under 20 in 2014, Wali Shah is a South Asian speaker &poet currently studying at the University of Toronto. As an artist, he is an advocate for Bullying Prevention, Mental Wellness & other social issues. Wali has helped raise over 1 million dollars for United Way, and is also an ambassador for Crime Stoppers, & Bell Let’s Talk. He has been featured in media outlets like MTV, Education Canada, The Toronto Star, and The Huffington Post. He has featured alongside public icons such as Selena Gomez and
    Billy Talent.
  • Shane Feldman
    As the Founder & Chief Executive Optimist of Count Me In, Shane Feldman is the creative strategist behind the world’s largest youth-run movement. Born out of Shane’s challenging transition into high school, Count Me In is a student-led charity and global brand that helps young people find their passion through community involvement. His thought provoking and inspirational presentations continue to help audiences reimagine themselves, their purpose, and their power to give back and “live a legacy.”
  • Jacqueline Dyck
    Jacqueline Dyck is a Grade 12 Lakehead Public Schools student who is a member of the founding board of WE Stand Up Thunder Bay. Her extensive leadership and community contributions have provided her with many opportunities including being asked to speak at WE Day to 20,000 youth. She will attend University of Ottawa in the fall in International and Global Development and intends to work in the field of philanthropy.

Other speakers and performers at We Stand Up include:

  • Audrey DeRoy, Elder
  • Jessie Kajorinne and the HIP HOP crew from Legacy Dance
  • Erin Beagle, Roots to Harvest
  • Thunder Bay Crime Prevention Council
  • Thunder Bay District Crime Stoppers
  • EF Education First Travel
  • Senior Vocalists of Applauze Productions

Throughout the proceedings, 14 local heroes will be recognized as a We Stand Up Champion. The champions are people who have taken the initiative to start a project, fundraiser, event, or committee to help others and make a change. A champion is someone who shows passion and leadership towards a local or global issue and takes action. Individuals, groups, and school staff were nominated as We Stand Up Champions.

The We Stand Up success story began in the Winnipeg Airport in October 2012. Following a delay in returning from attending the Free the Children’s We Day, the students felt that they should “pay” for the privilege of attending the event. As they waited for their flight, they began to plan an event for students modelled after the We Day event that they just attended. The committee membership later expanded to include students from the Thunder Bay Catholic District School Board and We Stand Up was created.