Celebrities attend WE Day to celebrate young people giving back

INGLEWOOD, Calif. (KABC) -- Thousands of young people from all over California gathered at the Forum in Inglewood for WE Day, an annual event that celebrates young people giving back in local and global ways.

The students heard from stars like longtime supporter Selena Gomez, Jennifer Aniston and Morgan Freeman. It's one of 19 events across the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and the Caribbean.

You can't buy a ticket to WE Day, you have to earn it by taking action on one global and one local cause.

"Everything from park cleanups to volunteering, to anti-bullying, to supporting mental health. You name it, these amazing young people have done it," said WE co-founder Craig Kielburger.

This year, WE Day was hosted by John Stamos and featured a performance by Dierks Bentley.

"This event actually does what it says it's going to do. WE Day makes children powerful, has children helping children all over the world," actor Henry Winkler said.

Middle school student Oscar Garcia helped his school reduce energy usage, build schools in Ecuador and raise money for blood cancer patients.

"It makes me feel happy, it makes me feel like I can empower people," Garcia said. "It's not a hand out, it's a hand up, give them the opportunity to help."

Since 2007, students have raised $105 million for more than 15,600 organizations.

Actor Martin Sheen has been involved for more than 15 years.

"Be confident that you make a difference by being yourself and by being in touch with your basic human compassion," Sheen said.

You can learn more about WE and WE Day during the hour-long special that airs on ABC on Aug.17.
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