“It’s in your power to bring about change.” – Barack Obama, speaking before the G8 summit


On Monday morning, Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, addressed a group of almost 2,000 young people at Waterfront Hall in Belfast ahead of the G8 Summit.

Speaking before her husband, Michelle said:

“When we reach out and listen from someone else’s perspective, we find that they listen to us.

“We need to rise above all divisions, and treat people the way that we want to be treated.

“Young people today have the freedom of an open mind, and the fresh perspectives to help find solutions to age old problems.”

The President of the United States added to his wife’s speech:

“Your generation have come of age in a world with fewer walls, in an era of instant information.

“You are a generation possessed by clear-eyed realism, and optimistic idealism, aware of the world as it is, but keen to make it as it should be.”

He acknowledged the impact of the recession, and the hardship that it had inflicted on communities “that have suffered real pain”

“It’s in your power to bring about change. In today’s hyper-connected world, things that happen here have an impact far beyond these walls.”

And that’s what we’re here for, the IF@G8 bloggers, to take the things that happen far beyond these walls, to the summit, and to take the decisions made at the summit, and throw them back out, far beyond these walls.

Updates to follow. See http://www.enoughfoodif.org/g8bloggers to follow me, Richard Murphy, Sarah Robinson and Rosebell Kagumire at the G8 Summit in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland.

Jack Monroe. Twitter: @MsJackMonroe

Categories: Blog


  1. Jack, when you say something, I know you wrote it and it comes from the heart. When i see a politician, or his/her, wife/husband, say something, I know its been written by some speechwriter and often has little to do with meaningful discussion and chance and more about political posturing. IMHO little comes from the G8, its all about the media. The change you will make will be with individuals – politicians wont do anything for you

    • I agree with Matthew’s post above. The speech seems quite patronizing TBH. I wonder what the food / bottled water bill will be for this summit, when all is said and done. Not to mention the additional security…

  2. If we were to believe every word from a politicians mouth,then the world would be a very different place today, but Good Luck Jack, hope you can make some changes.

  3. I agree with robertfrancisdrake and Irishman…

    to me, it does not seem they are “listening from another’s perspective”……..between their copying phone records/emails/pic/twitter/facebook/etc, and their current lifestyle of a dozen holidays a year, and the current president of U.S. passing legislation that He and one previous president get LIFETIME presidential security (it used to end after a few years), and their daily fitness trainer/personal chef/personally prepared organic foods/bottle waters/etc etc

    it hardly seems as if they have any understanding at all of “another’s perspective”

  4. I am sorry, this man is a fool. You want to see waste, he has parties at the WH every week, and we the people pay for it. Don’t mean to be political but he thinks he is a star not a man elected to help my country. Cheryl

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