Alaina is a talented, versatile musician who loves to read everything from YA to Sherlock Holmes to Dickens. She loves to express herself through various visual arts mediums and wrote a novel when she was only 11 years old. She loves to discuss important issues and was impacted by her family trip to Disney to explore her generation's understanding of feminism. Alaina is a Grade 11 student in St. Catharines, Ontario.
Teaching Pastor at Bethany Community Church in St. Catharines
Andrew and his family recently moved to St. Catharines in August 2016. He and his wife Krista have three children. He loves to cook, carve extremely detailed Jack o' Lanterns for Halloween and read several books a week. At the end of high school he changed his career path and went to Emmanuel Bible College for his B.Th. in Pastoral Ministry and Biblical Studies and while there began to pastor in his home church under his father who was the lead pastor. Andrew continued his education through gaining a M.A. in Christian Theology from McMaster Divinity School.
He has a wonderful wife Krista and three young children. His other big passions are soccer, reading theology of all sorts, listening to records while cooking, and travelling whenever he can with his family.
BK passionately investigates and stands up for science and facts. He has always been interested in majoring in biology and is excited to pursue a degree in biodiversity and conservation biology, hopefully at the University of Toronto after he completes Grade 12. Throughout high school he has loved to debate and explore controversial ideas. He lives in St. Catharines with his family.
High School English and Literacy Teacher
Carrie's love of literature has helped her through some dark times in her life. She loves her job at Eden High School and runs a growing, popular Book Club for students at lunch. She is a program leader and Literacy teacher. Her current passion is introducing her students to FNMI literature and issues (First Nations, Meti, Inuit). She and her husband Peter live with their two daughters who love sports, in Fonthill.
Claire is an exceptional, well rounded student who explores her passions on the basketball and volleyball courts, soccer field, and school newspaper. She recently competed in the DEC Business competitions at the provincial level. She lives with her mom and dog Bella in St. Catharines and is completing her Grade 12 education.
Claire loves skiing, field hockey, and ultimate frisbee. Her family's year on exchange to Australia was a year that transformed her life, pusher her out of her comfort zone and inspired her TED talk experience. After high school, Claire plans to take a gap year and travel, potentially back to Australia to Bible school. Her passion for science could lead to a possible future in medicine or genetic engineering. Another unique travel experience was her mission trip to Uganda and the opportunity to visit her sponsored child.
Currently in Grade 11, Claire works part time at the most amazing bakery in Vineland and lives in Jordan with her family of five.
Connor loves politics and movies which inspired his idea for his TEDx talk. He is particularly partial to the X-men franchise. When he's not studying, hanging out with friends or volunteering at New Hope Church's day camp, he works part time at Staples. Despite how cheesy it may sound, Connor really does want to make the world a better place, hopefully through his passion for politics and activism. To achieve that goal he will pursue a political science degree from University of Ottawa in the fall after completing Grade 12. Connor lives in St. Catharines with his parents and two brothers.
Destiny writes poetry and short stories and watches far too much anime on Netflix. She hopes to be an accountant or a lawyer depending on Canada's political situation. She lives with her sisters, mom, dad and dog in St. Catharines while attending Grade 10. She has struggled to cope with the effects of bullying throughout her formative years and developed depression and anxiety as a result. Part of her healing has been to find her voice and speak up about the stigma of struggling with mental health to educate the victims, perpetrators and those on the sidelines.
Throughout high school, I became a strong advocate for student voice in my school and community. Believing youth can make a difference and with the purpose of striving for better education, I became involved with the Federation of Canadian Secondary Students, a youth-led non-profit and now I'm part of its National Leadership Team. I take pride in making a positive difference as District School Board of Niagara Student Senator, and on the St. Catharines Youth Council. I was so excited and honoured to speak at TEDxEdenHighSchool. When I am not busy with schoolwork and extracurriculars, I like to exercise, journal and play Chopin on the piano. I also value spending time with family and my closest friends. Lately, I have developed a passion for portrait and street photography. In the future, I will be majoring in business with a minor in international relations at McGill University. One of my biggest dreams is to work with the United Nations.
An adrenaline junky, Jasmine loves snow boarding, long boarding, rugby and chasing sunsets. Jasmine loves her mom, Andrew and 7 sisters. After graduating from Grade 12 this spring, during Jasmine's gap year, she will be spending 3 months on the Eastern shore of Australia in the beautiful surf town of Byron Bay as part of the Youth With A Mission (YWAM) program. She is pumped about learning to surf and doing tons of backpacking, as well as, excited about the 3 months doing missions in Thailand. The following September, Jasmine will pursue a Bachelors' of Social Work and has received offers of acceptance at several Ontario universities.
Lead pastor of Southridge Community Church
Jeff Lockyer is the Lead Pastor of Southridge Community Church, a multi-site movement where each location serves a community need in their part of the Niagara Region. He is passionate about leadership development, serving as the Chair the Board of the Willow Creek Association Canada and co-hosting the Global Leadership Summit's "GLS Podcast". A former national team runner, he is now the founder and Head Coach of Tailwind TC, a regional track club for elite young distance runners. Jeff lives in St. Catharines with his wife Becky and three children.
Jack of all trades, master of none
At 19 years old, I may not be qualified for much but I believe the act of living life is an experience worth sharing, and it's an adventure worth taking. Life is the Masters Degree you didn't choose, but it is worth studying as intensively as any other field. Professionally, I have well over 5 years of established experience in waste sanitation and collection, custodial grounds management, general maintenance trouble shooter and various forms of floor scrubbery.
In off work times (or when I'm not compulsively absorbing movies), I enjoy nothing more than learning about everything I can. From scientific history and theological studies, to carpentry, and restoring or creating photographic relics and tools. I can be found most days amassing as much knowledge and experience as is possibly retain-able in order to become the best maker I can be.
Miriam is an award winning children's author of the "I Can" series and a Guinness World Record Holder. Her passion to build children up with positivity developed after a family tragedy and her participation in Jack Canfield's training on The Success Principles. She leads and attends workshops on how to become your best self and achieve your potential. She and her husband Mark live in St. Catharines with their four children.
Noah loves politics and hopes to be a labour lawyer or be involved in labour relations after studying political science at Brock University. A life changing experience was participating in the Summer Company program, sponsored by the Ontario government, as a student entrepreneur. Noah has explored many avenues to educate his generation about the ever changing ways to prepare for future employment. He has a website and has organized Town Hall Meetings for his peers to meet with business owners and community leaders. He is in Grade 12, lives with his parents and sister in St. Catharines and plays various musical instruments in his free time.
Student and Open Water Swimmer World Record Holder
Trinity is an exceptional Grade 11 student who is committed to challenging herself and supporting financially needy students who love sport. Trinity has swam across Lake Erie, is the youngest person to swim across Lake Ontario and in August 2016, became the youngest Canadian to swim across the English Channel. Her swims raise money for JumpStart Charities and she is a spokesperson for I am a Girl Canada. Along with her mom and her sister, Trinity is passionate about encouraging others to break down barriers to reach their goals.
Mayor of St. Catharines
Walter has served on several local and provincial boards. Walter holds a Masters from McGill University and an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree from Wilfrid Laurier University. He founded Vine Publishing company which he sold in 2005 and has co-authored 5 books including Vines: The Buyer's Guide to Canadian wine. He has been the mayor of St. Catharines for 3 years and is focussed on addressing poverty, developing a culture of excellent customer service and a compassionate city.