“I am a student attending Trinity Western University and I am new to Canada. I did not know of any support groups or organizations outside my University. It was important for me to be acquainted with other support groups outside my school since I lived in Surrey far from school. I was lucky to have a friend whom I attended church with get involved with Baobab, he kept talking about the projects he was involved in and invited some of the youth members from church including myself. It was a rewarding couple of weeks and a great experience of learning our local communities and the diverse cultures, ethnicities and social paradigms they house just to say the least. One major topic was discrimination and it’s many forms from racial and gender all the way to the ‘isms’. We got into knowing the services available to myself as a foreign student, youth and resident of Surrey to be specific. I was pleased to learnt the vast majority of youth projects underway within Metro Vancouver for the better future of the average  vulnerable youth. My most valuable moments so far have been undertaking youth projects under Youth Everlasting Seed of Baobab which focuses on the major issues within Surrey such as career networking, discrimination, poverty, homelessness, unemployment, crime prevention and most recent HIV and AIDS. I am well informed now with community aspects and developments, shortages and just learning to be sensitive to our communities. I cannot go without acknowledging the team work efforts by fellow volunteers”.

Rufaro C

“Throughout this time I have learnt a lot of things about Canada and some social issues and problems that different people from different backgrounds face. One of the greatest things i have taken to heart is the issue of homosexuality. Where I am from, homosexuality is illegal and any homosexual person is looked down upon. Our time at the organization has taught me to accept homosexual individuals in the community even though I don’t necessarily agree with it, i see them in a clearer lens now. I now see that they deserve to be treated with the same level of respect as any other person.
I also learnt about the issue of homelessness and how great of an influence it has had on Surrey as whole. More and more people are forced to live on the streets because they cannot cope with the day to day struggles and made me realize that something needs to be done and not just simply look away every time we meet them near the Sky-train or anywhere else.

As I was helping in the education sector, i realized that i didn’t know very much about Canadian education, but our time at the organization has opened my eyes to the multiple possibilities and challenges that i am going to face my time here. I won’t be moving blind to the dangers of my complacency anymore.
I have also met some lifetime friends and gained a bit of confidence in myself. My time here would have been a lot more difficult without my family and the friends i have made and i would like to say thank you (Y.E.S)”

Joseph S

“Youth everlasting seeds is a great program for youth and young adults. So far I have had great experience such as meeting new people of different cultural background and also making new friends. Additionally (Y.E.S) has helped me to get out from my comfort zone which was laid back and shy but now I am more confident, I can talk to people more easily and I can also share my ideas in group’s discussion without worry.
Thank you Y.E.S”

Joan N

“Since we started the Y.E.S program, I have been able to learn and understand many things that I did not understand. Firstly, we started off with racism where we were taught how to identify a scenario and how to handle it, once I go through it directly or indirectly.

Secondly, I have been able to learn about Canada and its culture and how to live with the different ethnic groups that are in the country. I have been able to learn how to address different issues differently and what organizations to go to for help. I am confident that as time goes by i will be able to learn more and be able to help others in need”

Angela G





“I like women’s group.  Talking improves my English, thank you Baobab as a French speaker I can now practice my English and meet new friends”

Veronique M.


Women’s Innovative Network Participant:

“I have learned a lot and met some really nice people. I have less stress and loneliness. I get to meet and talk with people as if I’m still in Africa, finally, we have a place to connect called Baobab.”

Janet M.



“It is easy to turn on and off my computer, check emails, watch movies, listen to music. It is now easy for me to use mouse, point and click. I used to be afraid of computers thinking that I will break them if I touch them. The class lessons gave me the courage to do so many things on the computer with ease.”

Story from our dedicated volunteer

Women’s Innovative Network Participant:
“I’m glad that we are able to know each other well and discuss matters related to women only with freedom. I have now opened up. I feel like I belong here.  I have the chance to practice speaking English.”

Joanne B.

“I’m happy to learn something new like typing, search the web, I have learned a lot and am now able to do a lot of things without much assistance. I have also learned about software and hardware and how they function, thank you Baobab.”

Computer Class Participant



” I think the fact that children come together and have fun, the game is very helpful to their health. It helps kids to burn energy”

Lorie L.

” My son likes it very much. The Coach is very nice and knowledgeable. The event is very organized as well as the people at Baobab, who organized it, thank you”

Haixan L

” There is lots of fun and energy. Kids are learning to play together, they are learning to work in a team and listening to a leader. I like this program, its very powerful”

Connie W.

” I like everything, it gets children’s attention. They are able to follow directions, while doing activities. You can tell that the coach has been playing for a long time and have the experience. It is excellent, I wish we could do it more often along the week. This program is very good for kids and their parents”

Daniel L.

” We had lots of fun. This program gives leadership and soccer knowledge to the kids. The kids can do more exercise outside and stay away from video games. It makes their body strong, its a great team work. I like the program so much”

Jane L.

“I appreciate the help rendered to me by Baobab Inclusive Empowerment Society at the time I needed it most. The support they gave me in updating my resume gave it the needed boost. Hence, I was hired
there upon.” 

Student nurse – Success –story from W.I.N. Program

“ It’s been a pleasure volunteering with Baobab Inclusive Empowerment Society. I like the fact that Baobab’s services delivery orientation reflects the mission which says; “We strive to empower vulnerable families and individuals with multiple barriers in our community through advocacy, dialogue, innovation, social responsibility and support for humanity”. The door is always open to people from all walks of life without discrimination. Inclusion and empowering those with multiple barriers are the main focus. It’d be nice to see more support for the programs/ services offered here.
I always wish that I came across the women support program at Baobab during the times I was going through difficulties in abusive relationships. Life could have been a little bit easier. Living with painful memories motivates me to stretch my hands out and touch vulnerable people who come here and make a difference in their lives.  Being a part of what Baobab is doing has positively changed the way I deal with my circumstances.  In addition to running women’s support group, it would be nice if Baobab could find another way to help women who are in unhealthy relationships like I was.

I enjoy participating by talking to women in a group setting and share some of my experiences as well as give them referrals to resources available in the community and beyond. Giving my time and energy to help others is all I can afford, but others can afford financially. I would like to see continuous funding streams so we can all do a collaborative work and reduce the impact abuse have on women who find themselves single moms. I too am a single mom.  I can say with confidence that Baobab has services, resources and referrals just like many places I sought help in the past.  As much as I am happy volunteering at Baobab, I still feel there are women out there suffering with concerns that need to be addressed. My greatest wish, is that one day, Baobab Inclusive Empowerment Society, comes up with a project particularly to target single mothers in abusive relationships”.  For more on Emelida’s journey this far, you can go to BC-Housing website and follow the link below: http://www.bchousing.org/Media/Stories/2013/07/04/5590_1307041152-148?pa…