What is your educational/ professional background?
I have a Bachelor of Environmental Science with a Minor in Biology from the University of Manitoba where I focused my studies on water resources and sustainable development. I am currently an MSc student at the University of Manitoba and Centre for Earth Observation Science, where my project focuses on oceanographic water quality in the Arctic and Subarctic coastal regions and communities.
How long have you been a board member at KIDS Initiative? What is your role?
I became a board member in December 2015. I am currently the Secretary, I am the leader of the Educational Outreach Committee and am a part of the Grant Writing and Program Evaluation Committee.
Why does the non-profit sector interest you?
I was introduced to the non-profit sector in high school thanks to the Winnipeg Foundation’s Youth in Philanthropy program and its Summer Internship Program in partnership with Winnipeg non-profits. These opportunities really opened my eyes to the non-profit sector and just how much non-profits contribute to the Winnipeg community and abroad. I am passionate about helping others who may not have the same opportunities I have had. Working and volunteering in the non-profit sector has allowed me to meet very inspiring and passionate individuals, which motivates me to continue my involvement in this sector!
Since its creation in 2010, KIDS Initiative has been very successful in its sustainable development endeavours in Kenya. Which accomplishment are you most proud of so far?
So far, I’m most proud of the Lemolo IDP Camp program. Although it hasn’t been retired as a project, we are so close! This has been the largest endeavour to date for KIDS Initiative and is working to increase the quality of life for hundreds of Internally Displaced families. Getting this community to a sustainable status has been a multi-project process and we are in the final stages of getting a borehole installed. This will provide a reliable water source for the community, which will help each family continue growing their crops in times of drought, and help them maintain an income to support their families. I’m very excited to see this reach a sustainable status, soon hopefully!
What are your hopes for the future of KIDS Initiative?
I hope that KIDS Initiative continues to thrive and continues to be a driving force in creating sustainable solutions in developing communities around the world. Sustainable solutions are important when providing aid to developing communities. It’s not only good for the environment but also for the community itself. Sustainable solutions empower community members by making them self-sufficient. I also hope we can help to educate, inspire, and equip Manitoban youth to act on the inequality experienced around the world. Today’s youth are so powerful and if we provide them with the proper tools to learn, they can change the world for the better.
Do you have any advice for professionals thinking about getting involved with KIDS Initiative?
KIDS Initiative is a small local organization that knows the importance of cooperation and teamwork. This team of volunteers is amazing, multifaceted, and passionate about making the world a better place, for everyone. Anyone who is looking to join KIDS Initiative must work well on a team and have a strong drive to help improve the lives of others around the world. We welcome individuals from any background and profession because we can all contribute something different to the organization!