Mentee Squad

Meet our 2018-2019 Global HERizons recipients and mentees!




Hometown: Estey’s Bridge, New Brunswick
Mentors: Myroslava and Amy
Project: Islay received funding towards her volunteer placement with L’Arche d’Aigrefoin in France. She will also receive support towards setting up a tea shop which will employ people with developmental disabilities.

Islay Purcell is a recent graduate of the University of New Brunswick’s Renaissance College, where she received a Bachelor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Leadership. While growing up in Estey’s Bridge, she became heavily involved in the Student Hunger Program with its conception in 2014, which provided her with the opportunity to develop a relationship with the Fredericton Community Kitchen as a volunteer, as well as the Fredericton Downtown Community Health Centre, where she discovered her love for helping those in need and advocating for the members of her community who are often overlooked. As the President of Art Zone, the campus art club, and as the Art Collection Technician at the UNB Art Centre, she fostered her passion for art. In the summer of 2017 she spent three months volunteering at an environmental protection association in the Kingdom of Tonga, where she was introduced to the beauty of living in a communal society and the thrill of being immersed in a different culture and environment. Over the course of six years she has also been involved with Best Buddies, a program through which she developed close friendships with several individuals with disabilities. Currently employed as a Summer Reading Club Activity Leader at the Fredericton Public Library, she looks forward to her upcoming year volunteering at a L’Arche community in France.




Hometown: Woodstock, New Brunswick
Mentors:  Elly and Jen
Project: Samantha received funding towards her volunteer trip to India with the Women’s Education Project where was involved in counselling women one-on-one. She also receives support towards developing her business, Wise, Well & Free Holistic Services, informed by her experience abroad.

Samantha Wilson is an East Coast girl with an immense love for helping people, nature, and traveling the world. Sam trained at St. Thomas University in New Brunswick, and is now a Registered Social Worker. Samantha currently lives on Grand Manan Island, a rural island in New Brunswick. The majority of her work and research has been with youth, particularly developing self-esteem and wellness programs. In the past year, Samantha has been a research project coordinator for a project that aimed to improve pro-social skills and self-esteem in young teen girls in rural Charlotte County, New Brunswick. Samantha also started up a Teen Centre at her local Boys and Girls Club on Grand Manan, that is now open twenty hours a week. Finally, she was involved in creating several self-esteem and wellness programs for young women. Samantha has a deep desire to help people become their best selves. Although the majority of her work has been rural, she has future plans to apply her work to a global level.

  • Read about Samantha’s motivations and expectations for volunteering abroad in her blog post, Live in the Present
  • Read about the highlights of Samantha’s volunteer abroad trip in India in her blog post, Make your Dream a Reality
  • Read about Samantha’s reflections on her rural background and global experience and her message for other women from rural Canada for building links themselves in her blog post, You are Enough
  • Read about how Samantha’s time abroad motivated her to start a new chapter in her life launching a business in her blog post, The Power of Silence



sq-alishaHometown: Hanwell, New Brunswick
Chris and Sally
Project: Alisha receives mentorship support to explore opportunities to bring some of her experience and expertise to the global stage.

Alisha Virmani is an aspiring dentist and a young humanitarian that was born and raised in Hanwell, New Brunswick. She is a graduate from the Bachelor of Life Sciences program at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. Alisha is currently in her third year of dentistry at James Cook University in Cairns, Australia. Alisha is an advocate for anti-bullying and sexual harassment prevention programs. For the past decade, Alisha has volunteered her time with the Canadian Red Cross to promote healthy relationships and safe school environments. Alisha has worked closely with the New Brunswick Ministerial Committee to have a strong influence on revised anti antibullying legislation surrounding the NB Education Act. She has also served as Witness for the Senate Committee on Human Rights to present similar ideas. Alisha has spoken about antibullying at numerous international and national engagements, including the International Summer Course on the Rights of a Child, the Canadian National Human Rights Conference, Canadian Women’s Foundation Conference and the Status of Women Conference. Alisha is a Queen’s University Chancellor Scholar and the 2013 recipient of the New Brunswick Young Humanitarian Award.

  • Follow Alisha on her Instagram blog, @dentistrywithali! She shares what it’s like to be an east coast Canadian girl studying abroad in Australia, a STEMinist/goal digger whose main focus is girl power, and a dentistry student
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