Young leaders in Charleswood


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This article was published 12/08/2014 (3211 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

I don’t know if it’s the air in Charleswood, the result of leadership formation in our schools, or just a coincidence, but it seems to me that there are a lot of young people in our neighbourhood who have embraced leadership to find ways to help others. 

Whether it’s starting a non-profit group to feed the homeless or providing special services to children with special needs, these young Charleswood leaders are certainly making a difference.

“No one will have to eat out of a garbage can; everyone will have a home.”  

This was the vision of eight-year-old Hannah Taylor and the Ladybug Foundation she founded. Hannah’s passion to help the homeless began when Hannah was only five and she and her mother saw a homeless man eating out of a garbage bin.  Hannah was so troubled by what she saw — and about where the hungry man would stay — that she began painting black and red ladybug jars and took them to her school to collect change for the homeless. After this life-changing encounter with a homeless person at age five, she has become a passionate advocate for the homeless in Winnipeg and across Canada.

Cameron Krisko is the founder and president of Making Waves Winnipeg, offering affordable swimming lessons to special-needs children. Cameron’s journey began as a Grade 11 student when he volunteered with the Special Olympics as part of the community service component. He still finds time to volunteer at many other organizations. This experience awakened a desire for Cameron to do something more for children with special needs. In 2011, Cameron founded Making Waves Winnipeg, a program that provides affordable one-on-one swimming lessons and water safety skills with volunteer instructors to special needs children. Krisko was recently named one of Canada’s Top 20 under 20, by Youth in Motion, and the winner of the Future Leaders of Manitoba awards in January for 20 to 25-year-olds.  

Another young leader who recently started an organization to feed the homeless is Nathan Unrau, at the time a 12-year-old Charleswood boy who, along with his family, founded Lunches with Love. Nathan started this project, as his ticket to get into “We Day.” With donations from the community and help from his parents and many volunteers, they put together lunches to give to homeless shelters. In their first year they made over 12,000 lunches. By the end of April they were over 16,000 lunches.

There are other young people in Charleswood who have raised money for charities — Kendra McBain for her Walk for Kids (raising money to support teens with cancer), Colin Findlay for Friends of Jo-Anne MS Walk. For many years Oak Park High School was the highest fundraiser in the province for UNICEF Children’s Fund. I don’t mean to omit other young leaders in Charleswood — and I’m sure there are others — these happen to be the ones that I am familiar with. We are fortunate to have such amazing young people in our neighbourbood and I have every confidence that they will go on to shape our community as future leaders of Manitoba.

Myrna Driedger

Myrna Driedger
Roblin constituency report

Myrna Driedger is the PC MLA for Roblin.

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