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  • Vermilion Voice

‘Live Different’

From left, Karah McGillvary, Alex Dimayro, Rebecca Lahosky, Jerad Zitman, Mike Brandolino, Emily Fraser, Austin Gauthier, and Rob Laska performed during the Valley band and Live Different Builds presentation at St. Jerome’s School on March 20. Photo Angela Mouly

“Empathy is a really powerful thing,” said Live Different Speaker, Jerad Zitman, at St. Jerome’s School on March 20.

Among the group of presentation speakers, Zitman suggested choosing to use empathy for good, and mentioned that people’s brains are automatically wired for empathy.

“We know how to reflect the feelings of others, and choosing empathy can change the way you see the whole world,” said Zitman.

It took Speaker, Emily Fraser, years to realize that her friends were willing to help those in need before she opened up and was able to connect on a deeper level.

A video segment mentioned that in every frame of a person’s life there is an opportunity for empathy.

Speaker Austin Gauthier reminded the audience that Habitat for Humanity released a statistic in 2015 that 1.6 billion people in the world lack adequate housing, and offered students an opportunity to join in a home building project trip to Mexico.

He continued to challenge students to open up to one another reminding them that people have more similarities than differences and that at different times people can often experience similar circumstances.

“Listening is what empathy really looks like,” said Gauthier.

The presentation incorporated a montage of speeches, video, and live music performances by the pop band, Valley.

“We like the message that the presentations send to the students, and were honoured that they asked us to be a part of it,” said Valley Member Rob Laska.

“The presentation was good; it represented the message we try to get to our students every day. We’re better working as us,” said Teacher Allan MacMillan.

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