This year, GLAAD is collaborating with members of the Global Shapers Community and the Forum of Young Global Leaders (YGLs) to ensure messages of solidarity, acceptance, and support reach LGBTQ youth around the world on Spirit Day.
Founded by the World Economic Forum, the Global Shapers Community is a network of young people under the age of 30 working together to address local, regional, and global challenges. With more than 10,000 members and alumni, the Global Shapers Community spans over 400 city-based hubs in 150 countries. Global Shaper Jake Okechukwu Effoduh has been leading the Global Shaper Community’s participation in 2020 Spirit Day.
The mission of the Forum of Young Global Leaders is to create a dynamic global community of exceptional people with the vision, courage and influence to drive positive change in the world. Founded by the World Economic Forum, the community counts over 1,300 members and represents over 100 nationalities. Dr. Cori Lathan and Nerissa Naidu have been leading the Forum of Young Global Leaders’ participation for this year’s Spirit Day.
In honor of Spirit Day, GLAAD worked with Global Shapers to release a video from young leaders in South Africa, Ecuador, and India with special messages for LGBTQ youth. The video features the following Global Shapers: Palesa Vuyolwethu Tshandu from the Johannesburg hub in South Africa; Rivonia Pillay from the Tshwane hub in South Africa; James de Villiers from the Johannesburg hub in South Africa; Cassandra Moodley from the Johannesburg hub in South Africa; Ashutosh Mishra from the New Delhi hub in India; Joseph Solis from the Quito hub in Ecuador; and Drew Gareth from South Africa.
Check out the video below:
Various YGLs and Global Shapers have created and shared their own graphics with messages of support and solidarity to LGBTQ youth on Spirit Day. Many have also joined together for a photo-op using the Spirit Day Zoom background. Check out some of the photos below:
From every corner of the world, Global Shapers and Young Global Leaders are planning to support #SpiritDay by sharing the hashtag, going purple, and sending love to LGBTQ youth everywhere. Check out some of the first posts below:
— Global Shapers (@GlobalShapers) October 13, 2020
— Global Shapers (@GlobalShapers) October 14, 2020
— Young Global Leaders (@YGLvoices) October 13, 2020
About Spirit Day:
Each year, millions go purple for GLAAD’s Spirit Day to support LGBTQ youth in a united stand against bullying. Started in 2010 by high school student Brittany McMillan in response to numerous young LGBTQ lives lost to suicide, Spirit Day now draws the participation of celebrities, schools, faith institutions, national landmarks, corporations, media outlets, sports leagues, and advocates around the world, all joining together to stand against bullying and support LGBTQ youth.
Presenting partners Delta Air Lines, Kellogg Company, and Target, official partners Amazon, NYC Department of Youth and Community Development and the New York City Council, and Skittles, as well as community partners Kirkland & Ellis, NBA & WNBA will all participate in 2020 Spirit Day.
In 2020, Spirit Day takes on a renewed importance due to the unprecedented challenges facing LGBTQ youth. This year, many LGBTQ youth are beginning the school year at home and are unable to attend in-person meetings of Gay-Straight Alliances, Gender-Sexuality Alliances or on-campus college LGBTQ organizations. Some LGBTQ youth may be confined to a home environment that may be unsupportive or abusive. Calls to The Trevor Project’s hotline for LGBTQ youth have at times more than doubled since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
This year, Spirit Day is on October 15, 2020. Take the Spirit Day pledge to show LGBTQ youth you’ve got their backs at glaad.org/spiritday. Follow @GLAAD on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to keep up to date with #SpiritDay news.