Sandy MuradCYW & Co-Founder of Helping Hands T.O
Born in war torn Iraq, Sandy and her family immigrated to Canada in 1994 finding a home in Rexdale, Ontario. Growing up in Rexdale definitely had its challenges but she would not have changed her upbringing for anything, as it has shaped the person she is today. It has kept her humble, grateful and motivated. After graduating from Father Henry Carr Catholic Secondary School, Sandy went on to Sheridan College where she studied Community Outreach and Development Work. She recently decided to further her education completing her Child and Youth Worker Diploma at Centennial College.
Today Sandy is employed by the York Region District School Board as a Child and Youth Worker where she works with students who face behavior and mental health challenges. This is very important work as she helps some of the most at risk youth in the school board. She also works at ‘Youthrive’, which is a place for Youth facing adversities to receive support and strategies to assist in breaking the many systemic challenges they face due to their circumstance. If all of this isn’t enough, Sandy also works with the HOPE program, which is a program that offers emergency housing to female survivors of Human Trafficking. Her positive attitude and kind heart is extremely valuable to all of these organizations.
Ever since she could remember, her heart has always been drawn to those in need. This desire to help has also led Sandy and a group of her friends to spark the ‘Helpings Hand T.O’ initiative, which promotes community integration, driven to help those in need. One of her most successful initiatives was a Thanksgiving Drive where the foundation collected toiletries and feminine hygiene products to distribute to the homeless throughout the streets of Downtown Toronto. Their creativity and determination to raise awareness for those who may not have a voice is truly inspirational.
Some advice she would share with the Youth is “hold onto your faith and keep working hard, you’re going to be alright”. Working to help others has continued to bring her overwhelming happiness and she is excited to help the Youth with their own journeys anyway that she can.
Words of Wisdom:
"Nobody really knows how much anyone else is hurting. We could be standing next to someone who is completely broken and we'd never know. So, be kind always. With yourself and others."