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Meet our Outstanding Canadians: Peter Wanyenya

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Peter graduated as valedictorian of the Pathways to Education Program in Regent Park and is now based in Vancouver where he is pursuing his doctoral studies, focusing his research on how diverse Canadian youth should be at the centre of activities to promote a more civil, equitable, and sustainable society. Over the past 10 years, Peter has promoted the cause of creating a more just world through access to education. Peter's engagement with youth includes working with young people living in low-income communities in Toronto, youth work on First Nations reserves in British Columbia, and working with international and refugee students in Vancouver. Peter has not only sought to pay-it-forward, but make a transformative difference in the lives of disadvantaged young people.

Peter recently organized and led a workshop for a diverse group of international students on community service learning, and has ongoing volunteer engagements with organizations that provide youth who face multiple barriers with access to education and employment through the arts, like the Access to Media Education Society and Kick Starts Arts. Peter has also been invited to engage with organizations like the National Alliance for Children and Youth on the development of national policies to address issues that affect Canadian children, youth, and their families. In addition to this, Peter has been a national champion for the empowerment of young women as a member of the pan-Canadian YWCA National Youth Advisory Committee. This committee promotes the fuller participation of young women in all aspects of Canadian society from politics to commerce to government.