TELUS awards seven young leaders in inaugural Friendly Future Makers Awards
Recipients each receive a $7,000 prize pack and were identified as part of a nationwide call out to nominate youth who are creating long-lasting change in their communities
Vancouver, B.C. - Today, TELUS announced the recipients of the Friendly Future Makers Awards, recognizing and celebrating Canadian youth who are creating long-lasting change in their communities. The Friendly Future Makers Awards are inspired by TELUS’ long-standing brand promise, Let’s make the future friendly. This year’s recipients were identified as a result of a nationwide callout that invited Canadians to nominate a Friendly Future Maker in their life who is doing amazing things in their local community. Each recipient will each receive a prize pack worth $7,000, including $5,000 to help fund their initiatives or to invest in a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP), a $1,000 TELUS gift card, and a $1,000 donation to a registered charity of their choice.
Throughout August and September, TELUS received hundreds of nominations from across the country. A panel of TELUS judges selected seven Friendly Future Makers, each representing one of TELUS’ areas of social purpose and driving force behind the TELUS brand. Join TELUS in congratulating this year's recipients:
Community Builder - Adara Hagman, ON: Adara Hagman is the co-creator of Chill Pill, a safe and supportive community for female and non-binary Gen Z to discuss mental health. Hagman is also building Gloclo – a clothes-sharing platform aimed at reducing waste by promoting circular fashion, creating a more circular tomorrow.
Hunger Hero- Georgia Apostolopoulos, ON: Georgia is founder of Bank on Bellies, a non-profit organization that partners with schools, local businesses, and corporations to help support local food drives across the Greater Toronto Area. To date, she has collected 14,700 food items and $31,791 for local food banks.
Health & Wellness Helper - Athena Woodford, NS: Athena raises awareness on the issue of sexual assault and sex trafficking, helping build healthier communities. With support from their peers, Woodford speaks on the issue at local schools and sells merchandise to raise money for Action Canada, a sexual rights and health organization.
Planet Protector - Aryan Gautam, ON: Aryan is the youngest member of several councils including, Ontario Nature Youth Council and the Youth Director of Mississauga Climate Action, and has committed over 10,000 volunteer hours, to date, spreading awareness about climate change, philanthropy and environmentalism.
Connection Enabler - Keeya Beausoleil, AB: Keeya is thefounder of a non-profit organisation, Out of Sight, In Mind, an initiative designing a durable, practical storage cart for Edmontonians experiencing homelessness through inclusive design and risk-reduction.
Future Friendly Maker - Austin Ma, BC: Austin is co-founder of the Coding Pals Foundation, a non-profit organisation that has taught coding to over 1600 kids since its founding in March 2020. Coding Pals continues to be the only non-profit organization in Vancouver that offers computer programming lessons at no cost. Today, Austin leads a team of over 20 high schoolers, running dozens of enriching year-round programs.
Future Friendly Maker - Juliette Décarie, QC: Juliette is a committed ambassador for the CHU Sainte-Justine foundation which focuses on fostering an inclusive community that celebrates physical, psychological, cultural and sexual differences on social networks. On October 1, Juliette began her fundraising journey with a goal of raising $10,000 for the CHU Sainte-Justine Foundation and embarked on a half marathon, travelling 22 km between Laval and Montreal.
“With the Friendly Future Makers Awards, we’re celebrating the inspiring young leaders who are making a meaningful impact today and helping shape the world we will live in tomorrow,” said Jill Schnarr, Chief Social Innovation and Communications Officer, TELUS. “This award demonstrates the power that imagination and innovation can unlock when youth are empowered to realise their full potential. From giving back to their communities, caring for the health and well-being of our planet, or helping feed those in need, it’s inspiring to see how many young Canadians are committed to helping make the future friendly. We want to thank everyone that entered and wish all the Friendly Future Makers Awards recipients a heartfelt congratulations.”
“Although change can be made by the influence of just one person, it takes a community to sustain that change and make a larger, continuous impact,” said Georgia Apostolopoulos, Friendly Future Maker, Hunger Hero. “TELUS recognizes this and empowers leadership, and initiatives like mine. I am grateful and honoured to have been thought about and selected as a Friendly Future Maker. This recognition not only supports my goals and achievements, but it celebrates the important message of my community, that kindness feeds bellies.”
To learn more about TELUS’ Friendly Future Makers and the difference they’re making, visit telus.com/YouthAwards.