Raquel Wilson’s love for all things cultural, matched with her activist spirit make her a secret weapon in a time of creative idea exploration and a growing surge of international social consciousness. An artist and social anthropologist, she harbors a passion for creating opportunities that give the “underdog” a chance at success.
Instrumental in the development of several programs that span many industries, Raquel is responsible for the founding of VERBALISMS, a print and online magazine focused on women in hip-hop; ISIS, a support group for African-American women; and CLASS, a peer mentoring program for first generation college students studying at Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis.
She has also served as Project Coordinator for the United Nations Girls’ Education Initiative, contributed timely editorial to the UNICEF global website and was personally requested by United States State Department Hip-Hop Ambassador and Cultural Envoy Toni Blackman to design a curriculum that encourages self-confidence and healthy lifestyle choices among adolescent girls.
In addition to her present post as Web Manager with the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, Raquel also freelances as an independent consultant developing cross-cultural art and leadership programs that empower youth, particularly young women and girls.
Raquel is currently planning and coordinating the first TEDx event for young people on the African continent. An open space for young visionaries to collaborate and reevaluate the possibilities of creating a better worldwide community, TEDxYouthInspire will be held in Accra, Ghana in April 2010.
Dedicated to leaving a sustainable legacy that will dramatically change the standard of living for the world’s women and girls, Raquel has created an international program focused on allowing young women and girls, across six continents, to become leaders and catalysts for communal transformation. Through Dream the Planet, participants will work together, using video conferencing technology and online collaboration tools, to find solutions for common social issues.
A champion for children everywhere, Raquel is currently working on her first book, Because I Went Parasailing, an inspirational story of achievement for young people.
It is important to me that the playing field is equal for everyone – regardless of gender, race, religion, culture or class.
Dream the Planet uses technology to connect young women and girls, ages 9-18, across six continents to work together on finding solutions for common social issues.
Designed to foster leadership, community responsibility and global engagement, Dream the Planet programming includes:
* hands-on service opportunities abroad,
* language instruction,
* community mobilization training,
* experience using video conferencing and other online collaborative tools,
* facilitating quarterly, virtual summits addressing global women's issues, and
* mentorship in implementing responsible, sustainable solutions.
Enabling young female leaders to become catalysts for change, Dream the Planet’s mission is to reinforce how young women and girls view themselves as individuals, with a distinct and important place in the worldwide community.
Connecting schools in developing nations with technology and empowering young girls to lead social development projects in their own communities.
I am going to take TED to young people around the globe. Starting with TEDxYouthInspire. Taking place in Accra, Ghana, TEDxYouthInspire will be an open space for the continent's youngest visionaries to collaborate and reevaluate the possibilities of creating a better global community.
Everyone has a talk to give - regardless of age.
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