SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: Durham Life is giving away a pair of tickets to TEDx Oshawa (value = approx. $80.00). All you have to do is sign-up to receive our weekly newsletter - https://www.durhamlife.ca/#/portal/signup . You must sign-up before noon on Friday, June 7th to be eligible. All subscribers will be entered in the draw, and the winner will be announced at 5:00 pm on Friday, June 7th. Good Luck!

Are you familiar with“TED Talks?” Their YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/ted has over 24,000,000 subscribers and has over 2 Billion views! You no doubt have seen some of the inspirational videos in your social media feeds. Well, Durham Region will soon experience the TED effect with the TEDx Oshawa event happening this coming June 8th, in Oshawa, at the Biltmore Theatre. https://www.tedxoshawa.com/

When I heard about the event, I reached out to the organizers, and secured some pre-show interviews with some of the speakers. (Whatever I could do to help them out with the event promotion...) I won't go into much details about them, as you can watch the videos to get insights into some of the presentations that will be delivered on June 8th, but needless to say these speakers are truly inspirational.

Faris Siddiqui is one of the Co-Event Organizers for TEDx Oshawa. Along with his good friend Chad Andress, they have assembled a team to successfully launch this edition of TEDx Oshawa. While there have been two previous TEDx events in Oshawa, they were only one-off occasions. This team has a long-term vision to establish this edition as an annual event.

In this episode of “In Conversation with the Changemakers of Durham Region,” Faris takes us behind the scenes in preparation for the event. He also highlights some of the distinguished speakers and their topics. The theme of this TEDx Oshawa conference is "Shaping Tomorrow: Connecting Cultures, Ideas, and Innovations."

What I found most impressive about Faris is his dedication to community service, which has led him to engage in organizing community activities and culminated in his current role as the Co-Event Organizer of TEDx Oshawa. But most importantly, it has compelled him to change his career path from one in Business/Marketing to becoming a firefighter and serving the community at large. Very impressive for a young man in his early twenties.

TEDx Oshawa is in good hands.

Thank You Faris for your dedication, and good luck with your first TEDx Oshawa event!

If you are still debating about attending this year's TEDx Oshawa event, I hope this conversation with Faris Siddiqui will send you to the ticket wicket!

One of the speakers at TEDx Oshawa 2024 is Atif Rashid. While not from Durham Region, Atif's story will resonate with a large number of residents. He shares his personal journey of moving to Canada from Pakistan, in 2006 and the challenges he faced with loneliness and cultural adaptation.

He then recounts his deep friendship with his friend David, while attending Dalhousie University in Halifax. And what a story these two share. You won't believe it.

His TEDx Oshawa talk is called “Emotional Poverty” and emphasizes the importance of emotional support and connection through small acts of kindness and recognition.

Atif’s mission is to “Inspire One, Impact Billions” by sharing stories of how simple, authentic interactions can create significant positive impacts, aiming to inspire a ripple effect of kindness and support.

He now makes Ottawa his home, but his growing public speaking profile is taking him all over Ontario, and you might even catch him at Comedy Club near you very soon.

If anyone has found his purpose in life through adversity, it's him. I hope you enjoy this chat with Atif.