Laurier hosts those who aren’t waiting to become world leaders


She’s 11 years old and already heads a charitable foundation that has raised more than $1 million to help homeless people.

The reasons are pretty simple, says the Winnipeg girl, attending a conference at Wilfred Laurier University this week for talented young Canadians.

“I have a wonderful family. I have a wonderful home. I have a fridge to go to and a bed to sleep in, and a lot of people in Winnipeg don’t,” she says.

“And we all have the power to help them and we’re not. So why don’t we?”

It’s that kind of spirit that has drawn 39 prizewinning youth under 20 years of age to the leadership conference, organized by Youth in Motion and hosted by the Laurier School of Business and Economics.

Every year, the national, non-profit organization names the Top 20 Canadians under 20 years of age who show leadership skills.

Hannah was a winner in 2006.

“There’s some unbelievable young people in this country,” said Youth in Motion co-founder Akela Peoples.

Whether they’re working on a cancer cure, writing a musical or bringing clean water to families in developing countries, “they have a big dream and they won’t stop until they accomplish it.”

In the conference room yesterday, Hannah stands out among the group of teens and twentysomethings – but only because of her age.

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