Solidarity is a collective effort. From different parts of the world and from different walks of life, we join together—as donors, volunteers, activists and community members—to build a just world.
The Heart-Links board of directors is part of this effort, too. Our directors give generously of their time and talents to make a difference, a change for the better, in this world of ours. They have chosen to do their part by connecting with our partners in Peru and working with them to improve life in their communities.
Through our new Meet Our Board series, we’d like to introduce you to the people who make up this amazing team.
“Heart-Links would not exist without the efforts of a great many people.”
—Louise Vandenbosch, past chair of the board
Nathalie Kroeker joined the Heart-Links board last May. A recent graduate of Peace and Conflict Studies, she comes from a family that values community involvement highly. In fact, she found out about Heart-Links through her mum, who works closely with Pillar Non-Profit Network, to which Heart-Links also belongs.
Nathalie was drawn to Heart-Links’ mission of building cross-cultural relationships. “We’re in a globalized world, but communities are still so important,” she says. “We need to connect ethically, openly with communities across the world . . . Community is not just geographic.”
During her first AGM with Heart-Links (held by videoconference), Nathalie was impressed by our Peruvian partners’ resilience in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. She was also struck by the similarities between communities here and there. “Having the people from Peru taking part in our call was amazing,” she says. “The sense of family was really there . . . You can tell that they’re doing good work.”
On-the-ground experience with peace-work organizations in Bosnia and Guatemala has prepared Nathalie well for building solidarity and financial support for Heart-Links’ work. “It’s so essential right now,” she says, “to be able to continue to support our partners.”
As part of our Solidarity Trip Committee, she will be looking into how to continue to make connections between Canada and Peru even when face-to-face visits are not possible.
“For me what’s really powerful is having the chance to build relationships with people who you normally wouldn’t,” she says. “Even with language barriers and living in different circumstances, it’s amazing how much you can learn and connect with people despite those differences.”
We couldn’t agree more. Thank you, Nathalie, for joining our board of directors, and welcome to the Heart-Links family!