CHICAGO - Former President Barack Obama will return to Chicago Tuesday for the first-ever Obama Foundation Summit, a two-day event that aims to inspire a new generation of leaders.
The event will feature hundreds of big names, including Prince Harry and Chance the Rapper, are scheduled to speak and perform.
The summit is the second in a series of events created by the Obamas. The first was the foundation's Chicago Training Day, where young participants strategized to solve community problems.
SURPRISE VISIT AT TRAINING DAY
Obama made a surprise visit to the training day event earlier this month. He listened to each group tackle an issue and present a solution.
Obama told the group: "I'm really excited about what you're going to be doing. You are going to change the world."
Chynna Hampton, who was the first to present in front of Obama, said Monday that she was very nervous.
"It was like real, live tears," she recalled of the surprise visit. "No, no, no, this cannot be. It was like a game-changer. I was like, 'I still have to present?'"
Hampton presented on the topic of food deserts and poor nutrition. Growing up, Hampton remembers her grandmother sending her to the store in North Lawndale, telling her to pick up pork rinds and RC cola.
Now, as a young professional and mother, Hampton wants to educate people and local retailers about the need for healthy food.
"My family struggled with obesity, down to my mother, down to myself, something I was bullied for and I knew there had to be a change," Hampton said.
President Obama suggested Hampton offer bottom-line proof to retailers that healthy would sell, perhaps with a petition from the neighborhood.
"They'd find customers and by the way they could make money because there's a whole bunch of communities that are underserved right now," Obama suggested to her.
Hampton recently finished her master's degree and wants to do more to improve health for the next generation.
"It's time for us to move out and do what we need to do for our communities, for Chicago, for Chicago to have change," Hampton said.
Peer advisor Shantenae Robinson helped guide discussions at training days and will participate in the Obama summit this week. The event will promote action steps for those already working in the community.
"Once you make that connection with somebody in the room, which we know there will be great people in the room, it's relationships to follow to help your specific community," said Robinson said.
"There are leaders in communities bringing people together and they need our help. They need our support," said Mike Strautmanis, of the Obama Foundation.
The third part of the Obama Foundation campaign is a fellowship. Barack and Michelle Obama are in the process of selecting the first fellows. Both the fellowship and summit were open to applicants around the world.
The summit will feature about 500 civic leaders from around Chicago, the United States, and the world who will host lectures, workshops and interactive events. Summit participants will attend five main stage sessions with talks on topics ranging from motivating young people to choose a civic path to technology's role in creating equitable and inclusive communities.
Along with a star-studded array of special guests, the summit will end with a concert features Chicago's Chance the Rapper, Gloria Estefan, and The National. The concert will be open to the community, but only about 1,500 tickets will be distributed.
The concert will be live-streaming on YouTube. The summit will take place at the Marriott Marquis McCormick Place, the concert will be at the Wintrust Arena on East Cermak Road in the South Loop.
For more information visit: https://www.obama.org/summit/