Director of Operations
Amanda graduated in 2015 with a BSc in Sports Coaching from Leeds Beckett University in Leeds, England where she was born and raised. After moving away from England in her late teenage years she developed her own youth soccer Academy in Texas. Now having moved to Victoria, BC She became the Director of Operations for Braefoot Community Association and is currently completing her MA in Global Leadership at Royal Roads University. She is passionate about diversity, equity and inclusion, wants transformative change and believes it is important to embed this into the holistic learning frameworks of child development.
Hobbies - Sports! Soccer especially competing professionally.
Favorite books or movies - Harry Potter
Most important child care quality - Buildings Relationships / Connectednesss
Childcare Expreience - 12 years in the childcare industry
Favourite game to play with the kids - Army. Gives the children multiple chances to try again teaching them it is ok to keep trying
Most rewarding moment as a childcare provider - Watching a child who has been struggling to complete a task, or transition into a new place where they flourish and recognize their success and abilities
Favourite Animal - Monkey
Marigold Center Manager
Gabi is a Vancouver Island local, growing up just minutes away from the Marigold Centre. In 2019, she successfully earned a BA in Adventure-Based Counseling, with a special focus on childrens's programming. Prior to joining Braefoot for the 2022/23 school year, Gabi held various roles within the education/childcare field, including positions as a teacher, support worker, coordinator at an online learning center, daycare leader, and behavior interventionist. Outside of their professional commitments, Gabi enjoys camping, has a penchant for tabletop role-playing games, and cherishes quality time spent with Bowser the bearded dragon and Toast the cat. Gabi's core values revolve around community and connection. She firmly believes that establishing a robust support system where children and their families can flourish is the most valuable contribution we can make to the next generation.
What were your favourite childhood hobbies?
I have always been very interested in the fantasy genre. Because of this, I spent a lot of my childhood reading everything I could get my hands on and drawing all of the amazing worlds I was reading about.
What was your favourite childhood book or movie?
I loved the Chronicles of Narnia series, and my absolute favourite was the Voyage of the Dawn Treader. I must have read that book at least 100 times!
What do you consider to be the most important quality for someone working in childcare?
The most important quality of someone working in childcare is genuine care and empathy for the children.
If you could be any fictional character, who would you be and why?
If I could be any fictional character, I would be Bilbo Baggins from the Hobbit! He had the opportunity to go on an exciting adventure, exploring the incredible world around him and making lifelong friends.
What is your favourite thing about working with children?
I love being able to support children as they find out who they are and what the world means to them.
Braefoot Center Manager
Shannon joined us in August of 2023 and brings a background in various non-profits (as an employee, volunteer, and board member), childcare (as a manager, summer camp leader, tutor, babysitter, and care worker), and sports (pre-motherhood she was a triathlete, outdoor guide, and active runner). Shannon worked with Outward Bound, and is quite familiar with education with an outdoor focus and building leadership skills. Shannon studied psychology at UVic, and worked in a trauma environment for five years, learning a non-judgemental and person-centred approach to relationships.
Shannon has a love of languages, She is francophone and speaks passable Spanish, and continues to learn bits and pieces of other languages. Shannon is excited to share her love of learning in general, community, science, reading and cultural stories, and math! You may notice a shift to include intentional reading times, discuss diversity, enjoy science experiments, explore local plants and animals, learn about first peoples, noticing artists, and a focus on policy and best practices!
Shannon is hoping to bring enjoyment to every day and introduce themes to our centres starting with the ocean for September. She aims to create an open and inclusive environment for everyone: Children, Families, Employees, Partners, and our Communities.
Out of school care leader
This is Sarah’s first year with Braefoot community association and is so excited for what this year has to offer! Sarah is 23 years old and is working on her bachelors degree at the University of Victoria. She studies psychology and will be graduating in the spring of 2024! Sarah loves cooking and has been a vegan for 6 years. Her favourite thing to do is making any kind of art. Sarah is looking forward to sharing that hobby with the children!
Hobbies - I did ballet and jazz dancing, from ages 6 to 16!
Favorite books or movies - My favourite childhood books were the Berenstain bears books.
Most important child care quality - Patience and empathy, so that you can really be there for the kids and tend to their needs!
If you could be any fictional character what would it be? - I would be princess peach because I love her pink dress!
Most rewarding moment as a childcare provider - The most rewarding moment I have had working with children is when the child I nannied for told me I was her favourite caretaker!
Favourite Animal - Unicorn