Budyanee is an active member of over five different youth groups and initiatives in Kingston. She is always looking for ways to play her part in improving our community. Her engagement and advocacy for Kingston youth began shortly after she arrived, December 2015. Budyanee was approached by a member of the Limestone District School Board to be a Keynote Speaker for the “Dare to Stand Out: Youth Diversity Conference”. This was her first time speaking about her experiences coming to Canada in front of a large audience of youth. She was amazed by how responsive, appreciative, and respectful everyone was, this encouraged her to continue being involved in the Kingston community.
From this Budyanee became involved with Peace Quest, then the Immigrant Services Kingston and Area (ISKA) youth group and Pathways for Children and Youth. The ISKA youth group has played a huge role in her feeling welcome in Kingston. Through attending youth group she has been able to experience many diverse cultures. This also createda drive in her to expand her knowledge and began learning more languages; she would love to be able to assist as a translator for the group.
Just this year Budyanee added to her growing list of youth initiatives by becoming a successful candidate for Sophie Kiwala’s MPP Youth Council. This makes her one of approximately ten youth that discuss youth issues related to provincial parliament and bring them directly to Sophie Kiwala.
Something Budyanee hopes to work on moving forwarding is addressing racism in Kingston, specifically socio-political aspects of racism. She is currently in a working group that aims to ending structural racism in Kingston, as of now this group is doing research to learn more about the experiences of racialized youth in Kingston.