Advocacy & Community Work
Writing is part of advocacy, but I also love being out and about in the community.
If there is one factor which, more than any other, holds people back from realizing their potential and dreams, it is poverty. Poverty reduction is a major focus of my writing and community work, and has included organizing events and advocacy campaigns.
One cause that I am particularly dedicated to is ending BC's 'spousal cap', which essentially cuts people off from social assistance if they have a spouse which makes an income.
I am also on the City of Vancouver's Renters' Advisory Committee, and want to help make housing more affordable and accessible throughout the province.
One of my biggest passions is teaming up with self-advocates to advocate for the full community participation and inclusion of persons with intellectual disabilities.
In addition to writing often about this topic, I have served as the chair of Community Living British Columbia's Vancouver Council, which focuses on issues like inclusive housing, employment, and accessibility.
Having benefited from mentorship as a youth, youth engagement has been a focus of mine. This includes co-facilitating a YMCA program for young newcomers to Canada, and working on the Fresh Voices and Fostering Change advocacy campaigns for newcomers to Canada and youth in BC's care system respectively.
I also had a great time at Easter Seals hosting programs for youth and young adults with disabilities.
Volunteering as a greeter at a seniors' thrift store - Clothes & Collectibles - showed me that friendship is timeless and inspired me to write "Time To Bridge The Generational Divide".
Volunteering in the Downtown Eastside helped me see that community can be found anywhere, and that you should not just listen to what the news says about people.
Teaming up with newcomers to organize community events taught me that the most humble, unassuming people can have the most amazing stories - of war, love, and perseverance.