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Pete Carroll, Russell Wilson, Jennifer Hudson to headline star-studded Seattle youth empowerment event

We Day co-founder Craig Kielburger interviews Nobel Peace Prize winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu at a recent We Day event in Vancouver. Seattle will host the first We Day in the United States March 27 at KeyArena (Dennis Pang/We Day photo)

Academy and Grammy award-winning actress and singer Jennifer Hudson, Seahawks Head Coach Pete Carroll, NBA legend Magic Johnson and nearly two dozen other celebrities are among the world-renowned musicians, sports stars and other icons joining forces later this month for the first-ever We Day Seattle.

Modeled after a hugely successful series of youth empowerment events across Canada, We Day aims to inspire over 15,000 young people from nearly 400 middle and high schools who’ll gather for the KeyArena event March 27.

“We Day creates a space for recognizing the world is bigger than yourself, that people all around the world face adversity, and that you can be part of the great movement towards making the world a better place,” said Carroll.

The event is the brainchild of brothers Craig and Marc Kielburger, world renowned activists who first dedicated their lives to philanthropy before they were even teenagers, proving to the world how much difference an inspired young person can make.

“Since We Day was born five years ago, we’ve seen an incredible commitment from young people across Canada who have raised $26 million for 900 local and global causes, volunteered 5.1 million hours and collected 2.8 million pounds of food for local food banks,” said Craig Kielburger, co-founder of Free The Children. “We know how committed youth in Washington State already are to service learning initiatives and can’t wait to see what actions We Day will spark in this passionate community.”

We Day events resemble both a rock concert and a revival. Speakers and performers push young people to take on pressing world issues and ignite their passion to be a part of the solution, said Kielburger.

The KeyArena lineup includes Seahawks starters Russell Wilson, Richard Sherman, John Moffitt and Russell Okung, acclaimed actor and activist Martin Sheen, former Sonics star Gary Payton, Grammy winner Nelly Furtado, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, civil rights activist Martin Luther King III and many other notable authors, politicians, activists and actors.

You can’t buy a ticket to We Day. The 15,000 lucky students who’ll get to attend earned their way in through service by making a commitment to take action on one local and one global initiative throughout the school year, as part of the We Act program.

We Act supports students and educators with free educational resources, student-led campaigns, and support materials to help turn the event’s inspiration into sustained activation. Together, We Day and We Act provide a blueprint for raising a generation of active global citizens.

“I truly believe that to be successful in the pursuit of any dream you must surround yourself with a strong, positive and like-minded support network,” said Jennifer Hudson. “We Day gives youth the platform to build that and see that they are not alone in their desire to make a difference in the world, but are surrounded by thousands of others just like them who want a change.”

KIRO Radio and Bonneville Seattle are proud to partner with We Day for the inaugural event. We’ll have coverage before, during and after the event both on KIRO Radio and at including exclusive interviews, photos and audio from the event.

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