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Judith Davis
9mo New York, NY, United States Story
Empowering Young Girls: Gabourey Sidibe Speaks at the Apollo Women of the World Festival

Saturday morning, May 6, 2017 was a lot different than the typical Saturday.  This day began with the Apollo Women of the World Teen Summit. WOW Teen Summit Grrls, Pearls, Unfurl: Identity and Self Love in the Millennial Age was held on the Apollo Main stage from 11:00AM – 12:30PM.  

There was music by artist Samaira Gibson, Khaya Cohen and Leah Jenea Gaines.  In addition , there was poetry by Milly Shrestha and Rabih Ahmed and panels discussing social activism wih Malyia McNaughton, Miss Fame, Amani Al-Khatahtbeh, Victoria Pannell, Hebh Jamal, Federico Michelin and Latchmi Gopal.

The program also featured actress Gabourey Sidibe (presented in partnership with Pen World Voices. Gabourey shared her unconventional journey from Harlem to Hollywood with highlights from her irreverent and hilarious new memoir, This Is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare.  She is an American actress who made her acting debut in the 2009 film Precious, a role that brought her a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress.

During the talks, Gabourey shared a few funny and heartbreaking stories of her experience in high, but ended the conversation, empowering and uplifting young women to follow their goals.  She event share that it was her birthday which boosted the audiences love for her even more, but taking the time to speak to them on such a special day.  

Following her talk, groups of young girls had the option to a mentoring session and to purchases Gabourey's new book and have it signed.  The events of the festival is meant to listen and hear the voices of young people in the world.  

The Women of the World runs from May 4th through 7th and is held every year at the Apollo Theater.  

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