Rise Montreal

Meet our Fall 2019 Ambassadors

Aoife Leonard

Aoife (ee-fa) is a hint to my Irish origins. Of European origins, I was born and raised mostly in Montreal. Currently, I am specializing in Middle East studies at university and work as a massage therapist. I am passionate about understanding what makes us the way we are, and in exploring how to be our best selves within the frames of our respective realities.

RISE is one way for me to work toward that for myself. Connecting with like-minded people is a great way to foster hope and motivation and build community—all important elements for positive change.

Joyce Joseph

Quiet, omnivert, artistic, I am  an individual that enjoys the simple things of life. After completing a degree in Social Science (with criminology, sociology and anthropology as the core subjects), I decided to revisit her roots as an artist. From a young age, I was a part of many musical activities (such as piano and signing) and would create simple music to pass the time.

I also had a fascination for art, and the process behind it, so I decided to teach myself digital as well as traditional art. As the years went by, I slowly started incorporating video games and space into their artistic talents.

Reach out to me on Insta:

Marissa Ramnanan

I am completing a bachelors in Journalism and Law and Society at Concordia University. I am passionate about covering the environment, and political issues. I love to travel and learn about new cultures.

I chose RISE because of the topic of this cohort’s theme: the environment. Knowledge and awareness is crucial in any democracy, especially when it comes to understanding the complexities of climate change. Youth is often an overlooked demographic, but they are the leaders and changemakers of tomorrow, and should have accessible information available to them so they can make autonomous, informed decisions.

Medina Mohamed

I am currently completing a degree in bioinformatics at the University of Montreal. While I have a slight interest in life sciences, I also like learning about web and app development including the design process and hoping to move in that direction as a career. In my free time, I enjoy bike rides and watching sunsets. It is important for me to be involved in my community.

With RISE, I am hoping to create an impact on my community while meeting like-minded people and building useful skills.

Reach out to me on Insta:

Miè Lacroix

I am a full time student, likes to spend time with friends and exercise. At 19 I started to feel anxious about the state of our environment. I felt an urgency to consciously change to a more sustainable lifestyle.

I saw an add on Instagram by RISE and immediately felt intrigued. After my research on the program, I knew that I wanted to be a part of this more collective impact. During the first meeting, I was amazed at how energized and hopeful it felt. I hope to learn more about sustainability and give out hope to my surroundings.

Reach out to me on Insta:

Rachel Takasaki

I am currently studying biology and environmental studies at McGill University. You can usually find me spending time outside or baking to procrastinate doing homework. I also love talking to people and learning from their points of view. I feel most inspired when I meet other young people who are raising their voices about what they believe is important. Some issues that I’m most passionate are our unsustainable food system, environmental justice, and climate justice.

With RISE, I’m most excited to help mobilize young people in my community to take action around environmental-related matters.

Reach out to me on Insta:

Sarah Myriam Louis

I am currently completing my bachelor with a double major in Marketing and Business Intelligence. I am very passionate about politics, news and local media. When I am not hitting the books, it’s either because I’m at the gym, watching Netflix or just enjoying yet another Montreal terrace with my family and friends. I would love to see youth acknowledge their true power and stand up for what matters to them.

I also thinks RISE is the perfect program because it gives youth the tools to do so.

Reach out to me on Insta:



ROOTS FOR CHANGE is a platform created to engage and center BIPOC communities in the discussion around food sustainability. It aims to provide tools and knowledge and encourage youth in adopting sustainable food practices. Using social media, Roots For Change will challenge its community in adopting individual changes on the theme and will highlight local BIPOC initiatives and leaders in the field. A final event will be held to connect youth and create a space to exchange about our food system and how we can address the lack of representation of BIPOC youth in the environmental movement.

Follow their adventure on Insta: @aisbrise_yul and @rootsforchangemtl

Meet the Montreal Mentors


Charleen Kotiuga

Charleen is passionate about urban agriculture, alternative education, and community development. Having graduated from Concordia University in 2013 in History and Politics, Charleen then completed the “Market Gardening” certificate from the Concordia Greenhouse. Since, she has worked in the sector of urban agriculture: in horticulture animation and pedagogy with Ça Pousse and On sème, in edible landscaping and nursery production with Neumark Design, and as the coordinator of the program “Four Seasons Growing” at the Concordia Greenhouse from 2017-2019.

She is now the Urban Agriculture Coordinator at Sentier Urbain, and is excited to share her expertise as a mentor in the Rise program!

Find more about what makes Charleen happy, visit www.sentierurbain.org


Ndeye Fatou Mar

Ndeye Fatou est une passionnée de l’environnement depuis 2005, passion depuis le Sénégal qui l’a mené à faire un baccalauréat en géographie environnementale à l’Université de Montréal. Depuis 2016, son domaine d’expertise est la saine gestion des matières résiduelles. En commençant par l’éco-quartier Mercier-Hochelaga-Maisonneuve en passant par Villeray_Saint-Michel_Parc-Extension et en finalisant par Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie. Toutes ces expériences professionnelles lui ont permis de sensibiliser les résidents à comprendre et à mieux gérer leurs matières résiduelles.

Depuis octobre 2018, en tant qu’employée du Regroupement des éco-quartiers, elle est consultante externe en gestion des matières résiduelles à l’Office municipal d’habitation de Montréal.

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