Every year, VISA-AD chooses an iconic figure for its incoming cohort of volunteers. Following Nelson Mandela, Abbé Pierre, Sister Emmanuelle and Charlie Chaplin, Simone Veil was chosen to represent this year. Her life poses a great many questions and throughout the year our volunteers will have moments to connect and be confronted with the ideas and actions of this formidable woman who made her mark on several generations. Simone Veil sets herself apart with her strong values that sprung from her challenging life.
Her life is a lesson for each of us. She demonstrates humility and forgiveness in having been part of the Franco-German reconciliation and the unification of Europe. She also teaches us strength, having fought all her life for the rights of women. She was the first woman elected as president of the European Parliament, the first elected into the Academie Française and, this year, the first woman to be interred in the Pantheon before her husband. Simone Veil truly represents a hope for the future.