Andrea emigrated from Jamaica to pursue her educational dream of completing her engineering degree. She achieved more than education as she met her soulmate, had 3 amazing daughters and a progressive career.
After years of climbing the corporate ladder, working twice as hard as everyone else just to fit in, and being told by her doctors that she was a heart attack waiting to happen, she was restructured out of her job.
Perfect timing, as she felt her values no longer aligned with the company. Six months after losing her job, the person who took over 1/3 of her responsibilities actually had a massive heart attack, fortunately, he survived.
With this experience, Andrea wanted to inspire others to not let society define their dreams, direction or how far they could go. It was now time for her to pursue yet another dream, that of living her purpose of impacting lives to achieve their potential. Which led her to launch Achieve in 2013.
“I wanted to help people, like myself, get a clear vision of what success looks like to them, help them create a path to this success and ultimately have the impact they desired,” says Andrea.
Achieve has since grown from a sole-proprietorship to being incorporated with 2 principals. Andrea is also a professor in the business school at Humber College, fulfilling her dream to live in alignment with her purpose. To further her desire to impact others, Andrea is excited to journey with the She-Rites participants to dream, plan and create the future together.
Moved by witnessing human experiences in stories and on stage, Lisa dreamt of making theatre in her early days. In her hometown of Vancouver, she followed this path for a time, touring children’s theatre, dancemaking and then 15 years of songwriting which led her to Toronto. With the birth of her daughter, she put music creation and performance on hold and transitioned into serving the community.
For over 25 years now, Lisa has immersed herself in community development, health promotion, mental health and community services in various communities across the City. Whilst doing this she completed
her BA in Social Development Studies and a MA in Cultural Studies and Organization, Work and Leadership.
Currently, Lisa works for CultureLink Settlement and Community Services supporting newcomers, refugee families, women and youth follow their dreams of getting settled in Canada. Strongly influenced by her days as an artist, Lisa’s work is informed by the arts, engaging artist and community partners to support activities and providing opportunities for participants to explore through the arts. It is through accessing the arts, Lisa believes, that people reach the heart and soul of the community.
Favourite community-building activities include theatre-making, writing and access to arts and heritage. Lisa firmly believes that art allows people to imaginatively and empathetically enter into their own lives and the lives of others. She believes “to be a great society, we must have great art being made by all people where we can share of ourselves and learn from one another”. Lisa is thrilled to be working with the Achieve Potential Team, and being a part of building dreams and nurturing hope through the She-Rites program. Excited about going into the dreaming…
Lisa loves to spend her spare time writing, acting and is near completion of her second full-length play.