Dreams for the Lives of Others

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We’re excitedly preparing for our first TEDxASB event! The theme of our event is “Dreams for the Lives of Others”.

Enter to Learn and Serve is our school’s motto and the motivation for us to host TEDx events for our community. Our school’s mission is to “inspire all of our students to continuous inquiry, empowering them with the skills, courage, optimism, and integrity to pursue their dreams and enhance the lives of others”. On December 1st, we will focus on service in the fields of education and health, and engage in discussions about ways to empower our community to become more involved with local issues. Speakers will move us to dream about what is possible and motivate us to strengthen our commitment to serve others. The two speakers for our first TEDx event are Ms. Shaheen Mistry and Dr. Bill Magee.

Shaheen Mistry is the CEO of Teach for India and the Founder of Akanksha Foundation. The World Economic Forum has named her among the “Global Leaders of Tomorrow”. She is also an Ashoka fellow. An alumnus of Tufts University and Manchester University, Shaheen founded Akanksha Foundation in 1989 with the vision to provide children from all strata of society with the education, the skills, and most importantly, the character that they would need to lead empowered lives. Akanksha means ‘inspiration’ in Hindi, and Akanksha Centers provide supplemental education for poor children living in slums. The opportunities she provides are designed to supplement what they receive in government-run schools. Akanksha Centers operate before and after regular hours in donated spaces such as private schools, colleges, corporate offices, and science centers. Akanksha Foundation also provides formal education through Akanksha Schools.

Dr. Bill Magee is a leading plastic and craniofacial surgeon who founded Operation Smile in 1982 when a group of medical volunteers traveled to the Philippines and saw the hundreds of children who were scarred by deformities. Operation Smile’s mission is to “mobilize a world of generous hearts to heal children’s smiles and transform lives across the globe.” Every year, this non-profit organization provides free reconstructive surgery for hundreds of children and young adults in underdeveloped countries who have cleft lip or cleft palate deformities. Since 1982, thousands of volunteer healthcare professionals from Operation Smile have treated more than 130,000 children worldwide for facial deformities such as cleft lip and cleft palate. The organization currently has a presence in 51 countries. In addition to contributing free medical treatment, Operation Smile trains local medical professionals in its partner countries and leaves behind crucial equipment to lay the groundwork for long-term self-sufficiency. Follow the work of Operation Smile – World Journey of Smiles.

Both Shaheen Mistry and Bill Magee are living their passions and dreams. I believe that the work and personal stories of these two leaders will energize all of us. This TEDx event will support many initiatives that inspire us to grow as a learning community, foster a culture of ideas and innovation, and engage us in meaningful ways to move towards action in local neighborhoods and around the world.

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