Love this. Get them out of school and into a free event designed to inspire.
Why I organize a TEDx event for 16 - 19-year-olds
I came to TEDGlobal for the first time in 2009. I sat down for the first session and felt that we should all be giving our ticket to an 18-year-old for the afternoon as they really needed to be a part of this “zeitgeist of positivity!” In 2009, I also discovered TEDx, which had just been launched.
Back for TEDGlobal 2010, and examples of TEDx’s all over the world are shown and I decide to join this burgeoning group, and if my initial thoughts had been about 18 year olds then that is who I should do it for!
Coming home, my 19-year-old daughter and I viewed some of my favourite talks. Skip to 2011 and she and her best friend arrived home from travels around Indonesia. “Oh and we went to the Green School,” she said. “ Sorry?” I said. “That talk you showed us, well we rang them and spent the day there and Kate’s thinking of going there for an internship and we’ve got loads of photos and it was amazing…..”
She confirmed a valuable point: TED makes you want to do stuff.
So I started to plan our TEDx: TEDxYouth@Bath, an event for 16 - 19-year-olds, taking them out of school and mixing loads of schools up together for a day of inspiration. The event is free so that we can say “yes’ to students who contact us off their own back, or who may have given up on school altogether. The thing about organising a TEDx event is that everything just seamlessly comes together because TED is so respected that everyone just says “Yes.”
I asked Dr Scilla Elworthy, the founder of Peace Direct and 3 times nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize, if she would come and speak this year and she has moved mountains to be there. I went into schools to tell the students about our event and invite them to attend and we were over-subscribed by four times. We ended up live streaming because so many schools wanted to come and join us in the last couple of weeks. This year’s TEDx event in Bath has brought the whole community together all eager to support and underpin our event. Researching speakers has been a joyous adventure both times and it’s a delight to be a part of the community of TEDx organisers. I am so glad that by adding the x to TED I got an opportunity to reach the young people I wanted to support and I get to discover wonderful new things too!
Written by Charlotte Caklin, TEDxYouth@Bath organizer