Fred Penner is celebrating Canadians who make a difference around the world with the new song Somebody Believes — premiering exclusively on Tinnitist.
The Juno-winning singer-songwriter, family entertainer and World Vision ambassador was inspired to write Somebody Believes after meeting Edgar Gonzales, a former sponsored child from the Philippines. Millions of children like Edgar have been able to fight poverty and injustice thanks to Canadians who believed in their potential.
Inspired by Gonzales’ story of resilience, Penner jotted down the beginning of the song three years ago. “Within an hour after hearing you speak, I had written the song,” Penner said during a recent meeting with Gonzales. “Hearing you speak, and your enthusiasm got right inside me.”
Penner has been a supporter of World Vision for almost two decades. In the early 2000s, he travelled to Zambia with his son to film a program to promote child sponsorship. The trip had a profound impact, and he’s remained an advocate of World Vision’s work ever since.
“My philosophy is: never underestimate your ability to make a difference in the life of a child. I carry that with me through my music,” he said.
Gonzales is living proof that believing in a child can have lasting impact. “If someone believes in me, then who am I not to believe in myself?” he said. His sponsors gave him “hope and inspiration.” Now, “We owe it to the next generation to let them know that we believe in them.”
With this song, that is exactly what Penner hopes to do. “It doesn’t take that much…to give them that sense of purpose, energy and life … That’s why we’re here on this planet.”
Somebody Believes is being released to mark International Development Week, which runs Feb. 3-9 and celebrates the role all Canadians play in sparking positive change and eliminating global poverty and injustice. This year’s theme, Together for Gender Equality, recognizes the contributions of Canadians towards a more equal and just world where women and girls are empowered change agents in their communities.
World Vision joins over 50 organizations hosting events and initiatives from coast to coast to recognize Canadians who care, including artists, volunteers, youth groups and other generous Canadians.
Check out Somebody Believes above. For more information on World Vision, visit their website.