“The most important thing for anyone wanting to make a change is to get involved. Whether you are able to volunteer a little bit of your time or a lot, it is always important.”

-Koshin Mohomoud

Age: 29

Hometown: Surrey, British Columbia

Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta

Affiliations: Edmonton Somali Professionals

Tell us about yourself!

I am currently a senior policy advisor with the Government of Alberta. Prior to my current role, I worked in both the public and private sectors and spent time working in my hometown with an organization helping refugee children adapt to Canadian society. This work was important to me, as I grew up in an immigrant family and knew the challenges immigrant children face with the education system in Canada. This experience ignited my passion for community development, especially working with new Canadians, youth, and women. Along with many friends in Edmonton, I helped create the Edmonton Somali Professionals (ESP) group. Through this volunteer group, we work on various community-based projects, including running a mentorship program for university and college students, hosting an annual career night, and running fundraisers for local charitable causes.

How does your work promote gender equality in Canada and around the world?

Within the Somali-Canadian community, females play a very strong and prominent role. However, when it comes to formal leadership positions, they are underrepresented and often overlooked. As a member of ESP, I encourage female membership and a gender balance, at a minimum, within our organization’s leadership and committees. I also recognize the importance of having more female leaders participate in Canadian politics and am committed to make this happen. I am currently on the campaign team helping a female member of ESP coordinate volunteers and register party members to vote for her to represent them in her Edmonton riding in the next federal election.

What change would you like to see in the world by 2030?

I would like to see a reduction in gender-based violence and poverty. All too often, race and gender negatively affect one’s economic well-being. I believe that if we have more females in leadership positions, including in government and in the non-profit and private sectors, we will see greater change in our society on these issues. While I believe we as Canadians have made humble progress, I know that there will always be more work to be done nationally and globally.

More 2019 Top 30 Alumni

Amber Rai

"To be a change-maker, you must identify an issue that needs to be addressed, think of ways to bring about the change, and evaluate your efforts to ensure you are making the impact that you hoped for." -Amber Rai Age: 20 Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta Currently Residing In: Sherwood Park, Alberta Affiliations: Learning Beyond Borders, HEAL International Ever since I joined the Learning Beyond Borders club over five years ago, I have been working on programs to help students in rural Uganda....

Stephanie Southgate

"Never underestimate the effect that your actions have on other people. Follow your interests and skills, and use them to make a positive impact." -Stephanie Southgate Age: 28 Hometown: Ipswich, United Kingdom Currently Residing In: Calgary, Alberta Affiliations: CAWST (ACGC Member) I have always been driven to make a positive contribution to others and the world. However, during a university internship in rural India, my resolve to shift my career path towards education was solidified upon...

Ameer Farooq

"To improve gender equality, we need to understand the issue through data and research and make informed decisions that get at the heart of the problem." -Ameer Farooq Age: 29 Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta Currently Residing In: Calgary, Alberta Affiliations: Alberta Health Services The corridors of Mohammad Ali Jinnah Hospital are smeared with the stains of spit-up paan. There are people everywhere—under the stairs, in every chair, in every bed, some moaning, some simply staring with large...

Mabel Smith

"It is important to find something that you love doing and that you feel has a positive impact on the world." -Mabel Smith Age: 22 Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: Engineers in Action I have always felt a strong sense of environmental and social responsibility. While still in elementary school, I became an obsessive recycler as well as a vegetarian, and I would carry home banana peels and apple cores to compost. More recently, I have developed...

Tina Guo

"As young individuals, we have a unique opportunity and responsibility to advocate for marginalized populations, and strive to effect positive change in our communities." -Tina Guo Age: 22 Hometown: Calgary, Alberta Currently Residing In: Calgary, Alberta Affiliations: Students Against Domestic Abuse Association, Outrun the Stigma Calgary, Student Run Clinic Born to a poor, first-generation immigrant family, I understood at a tender age the irreplaceability of diligence and tenacity. However,...

Gideon Mentie

"Stories can multiply the impact of a good initiative, so let’s learn how to be captivating storytellers!" -Gideon Mentie Age: 22 Hometown: Brooks, Alberta Currently Residing In: Calgary, Alberta Affiliations: SPECT, FullSoul Uganda, CAWST (ACGC Member), Canadian Foodgrains Bank I am a 22-year-old Ethiopian-Canadian civil engineering student, born and raised in the little prairie town of Brooks, Alberta. Growing up in Brooks, where over 100 different languages are spoken, I was always...

Belen Samuel

"Acknowledge the call to relationship and reconciliation that is present with the land you stand upon." -Belen Samuel Age: 26 Hometown: Born in Zimbabwe, originally from Eritrea Currently Residing In: Treaty 6 (Amiskwaskahegan/Edmonton, Alberta) Affiliations: Supports with Dreaming Rainbow I am a Zimbabwean-born Eritrean settler with migration experiences as a refugee. I currently exist on Treaty 6 territory, where over the past five years, I worked at the Africa Centre and at Youth...

Sara Kardash

"Listen to the stories of the women and gender-diverse people in our communities and take the time to unpack your unconscious biases." -Sara Kardash Age: 22 Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: Engineers Without Borders Canada (ACGC Member) I am in my final year of civil environmental engineering at the University of Alberta, where I have been involved with the on-campus Engineers Without Borders (EWB) Canada chapter as co-president. I went into...

John Christy Johnson

"I urge you to pay back to community, leave a trail of breadcrumbs for the prospective engineer, scientist, or astronaut, and pass the baton as you strive for personal success." -John Christy Johnson Age: 22 Hometown: Angadical, Kerala, India Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: University of Alberta Rehabilitation Robotics Laboratory, ClickandPush Accessibility Inc., TEDxUAlberta As an Indo-Canadian and identical twin, I spend a fair proportion of my time thinking about...

Emilie Duchesne

"Knowing when to take and give space for others is the very first step in taking a stance against gender inequality." -Emilie Duchesne Age: 25 Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: Youth Empowerment and Supports Services (YESS), Comité Francoqueer de l’Ouest, Francophonie Jeunesse de l’Alberta (FJA) Who I am is shaped and moulded by my belief in equity and inclusion for all types of people. I am a passionate, part-time social work student currently...
Share This