When she was in Grade 12, Krissi Bucholtz, a third-year major in World Literature at Simon Fraser University was placed in charge of a fundraising project to build a primary school in Sierra Leone, West Africa. She spent over a month there as a student-teacher, gleaning valuable lessons about life, education and social justice.
Determined to be part of social change and to improve the quality of education, Bucholtz has returned to Sierra Leone several times since.
She heads back for another six months at the end of the year.
“These experiences enabled me to be a more active student in the classroom in Canada, speaking out about issues that before I might have let pass by silently,” says Bucholtz.
She was a driving force behind creating the non-profit organization called The People’s Foundation of Sierra Leone earlier this year, and has successfully helped raise over $25,000 to date.
Among her contributions, she has assisted with village agricultural initiatives and micro-credit programs, started up new programs that empower and educate youth, trained volunteers, led workshops and fundraised for university scholarships.
“Krissi is a committed and conscientious student leader, working assiduously to make classroom experience relevant to real world problems,” said Ken Seigneurie, director of SFU’s World Literature program.