CHICAGO, April 30 (UPI) -- Jennifer Hudson, Common, Selena Gomez, Colbie Caillat and The Band Perry are set to take part in the first We Day Illinois event at the Allstate Arena.
Also helping out will be Tyrese Gibson, Martin Sheen, Earvin "Magic" Johnson, Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds, Rico and Raini Rodriguez, Hannah Simone, Marlee Matlin and Dennis Haysbert.
Organizers said children have spent months volunteering on issues ranging from bullying, homelessness and the environment to inner-city violence, which earned them their tickets to this event, which was created to inspire students across the state to become leaders and global citizens. "We Day is about inspiring and motivating youth to become leaders, in their local communities and in their global communities -- by celebrating their work and encouraging them to take action," Common, founder of the Common Ground Foundation and co-chair of We Day Illinois, said in a statement. "I'm proud to be part of an event that makes a difference in the lives of others and honored that I get to support this movement in my hometown of Chicago." "All of the students here have spent the last year earning their tickets," added We Day co-founder Craig Kielburger. "We Day is a celebration of service but the real work starts when these young people go back to their classrooms and communities, empowered to make a difference. Over 2,000 schools and groups across the United States are involved in our We Act program and these youth have been able to achieve remarkable change. Last year, over 31,000 students went silent for a total of over 198,000 hours to stand up for children in developing communities who are silenced by poverty and exploitation and over 460 schools collected over 440,670 pounds of food for local food banks."
"We support empowering our youth to do good things in their communities," said Tom Wilson, chairman and chief executive officer of Allstate. "Not only do they see the direct benefit of their work, they build the character, confidence and leadership skills necessary to achieve greater success in life. We brought We Day to Illinois to celebrate those who are a Force For Good. Our goal is to help these kids believe in themselves and feel the power of their collective voices."