30 Under 30: David Wang
High School: Richmond Secondary
David Wang has a dream—that all children with disabilities be treated fairly and equally, worldwide. A Grade 12 student, Wang has made it his mission to make that dream a reality, founding the SDC Blue Ribbon Foundation in 2010.
What started as a “ragtag group” has since blossomed into a youth-powered non-profit organization with hundreds of team members throughout the Lower Mainland. Its acronym stands for Support Diversity in Children.
Fluent in English and Mandarin, the Ottawa-born and Richmond-raised Wang established the foundation after visiting a school in China for children with disabilities, where living conditions were poor. The foundation aims to raise awareness to support children with disabilities across the globe.
Among the foundation’s local efforts: after school programs run in co-ordination with Richmond Centre for Disability. After a session last fall, a participant urged Wang to offer more music therapy classes. He told Wang it was the only time he was happy and felt such comfort.
Inspiration? “My brother inspires me the most in my life. Even though he was born with disabilities that restrict him from the same opportunities I am given, he never gives up in anything he does and always has a positive attitude. No matter how difficult things become, he is always smiling and enjoys living every second of his life.”
Most proud of? “My proudest moment so far is when I visited the school in China and provided the children with school supplies. As I handed each and every one of the 140 children with pens, chalk, and other stationary, each child looked up with joy in their eyes and delight and yelled out, ‘Thank you.’ The principal of the school then told me that these children have never smiled so much in a day and they really enjoyed life.”
Advice? “Advice I have for others is to not give up on any dream you have and don’t underestimate yourself.”