Lexi Salt was an International Development student who founded and led Water 4 Life, a social justice event that took place in March 2013, with the support of UWaterloo's Free the Children Club. The goal was to raise awareness about international water and sanitation among UWaterloo students and raise funds to go towards a Clean Water Project in Kenya, which will see the construction of a well.
Water 4 Life consisted of a relay race where participants competed while carrying 20 litres of water on their backs, giving them a chance to experience the challenge that millions of people face on a daily basis in order to collect water for their families. The event also featured presenters who spoke about international water and sanitation issues, as well as social justice and environmental booths.
Lexi has been involved with Free the Children since she was in Grade 10. She has been to Kenya, where she participated in a 'water walk' with the women in the community -- which provided her with the inspiration for Water 4 Life.
Andrew Wong was an Urban Planning and Environmental Economics student who founded, and now is director of, an organization called Students on Ice (SOI) Alumni Delegation. Andrew, who has always been passionate about nature, was so inspired by a trip to the Canadian Arctic that he felt compelled to found the group in 2011.
The SOI Alumni Delegation is made up of youth under the age of 24 from around the world who seek to ensure the long-term sustainability of the polar regions.
Andrew used this award to help send delegates to the 2012 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20 Earth Summit) in Brazil. The delegates expect to develop and publish a research-based policy platform that will outline how the international community can promote sustainable development in the polar regions.
The group is inspired by Students on Ice Expeditions, which provides students, educators, and scientists the opportunity to learn about and experience the polar regions.
See Andrew's TEDxUW talk on YouTube
Andrew was also chosen as one of 5 Global Changemakers by the Ontario Council for Economic Cooperation in 2014
Tomm Mandryk was an International Development student who has made a difference in the Dominican Republic. He opened a temporary eye clinic in Las Pajas, as well as funds and supports a small clinic called Clinica Rural Las Pajas, and helped set up another in 2012 with financial support in part from St. Paul's.
Tomm has also been on the Board of Directors as Director of Fundraising and Promotions for the Dominican-Canadian Community Development Group; they partner with grassroots groups and build sustainable projects that residents need.
When the University of Waterloo recruitment office published a calendar that highlighted eight interesting undergraduates, Tomm was featured for his efforts in reinforcing health care in the Dominican Republic.