Chicago area students earn We Day tickets by volunteering

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Students around the Chicago area are hard at work volunteering as part of an effort to earn tickets to We Day, a youth empowerment event hosted by Selena Gomez and packed with celebrity including Chicago's own Jennifer Hudson and Common.

It is important to note that many of the students we've met were already active volunteers. They already were motivated to do their part to help others, but knowing their actions are now a part of a much larger movement -- with some star-studded perks -- they have an even greater incentive to work hard at doing good.

Students from the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy helped to sort donated clothes at the Wayside Cross Ministries Hope Chest Resale Store. Proceeds from the store benefit men who are homeless.

"We are a volunteer-driven ministry. Without volunteers, this is not an exaggeration, like these people from IMSA, we would not get through one 24-hour cycle," said Randy Tomassi, Wayside Cross Ministries.

The students were already committed to helping the homeless, but earning a ticket to We Day is icing on the cake.

"No one should have to go without the basic necessity of where they're going to live and where they're going to go at night to spend the night," said Priya Trivedi, a senior at Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy. "It was incredible to hear that there was this huge national program that was doing basically what we were trying to do at our own school."

Meanwhile, students at Glenbrook South High School in Glenview are on a mission to halt hunger. They recently organized an in-school event to raise awareness and money for the hungry in their community and across the globe. As part of the event, they packed sack lunches and brought to brown elementary school on the city's West Side. They shared lunch with the young students, read Dr. Suess to them and donated books.

"I just like making people smile and I like just helping people and it's great that I'll be able to see it because usually we just like write letters to somebody but we don't get to see the impact of it, so I'm really excited to go down there and see the smiles on their faces," said Katie Hauldren, a senior at Glenbrook South High School.

It is efforts like these that have earned 15,000 students across the state tickets to We Day. The event is next Thursday at the Allstate Arena. It's too late to earn a ticket, but organizers are looking for volunteers to help out that day and that's a great way to get in on the action.

To sign up, visit: www.weday.com/volunteer

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