For many Canadians, their first introduction to UNICEF is often a singular moment – the first time they trick or treated in support of UNICEF, or talked about UNICEF at school. But for Beth Borody, dividing her time growing up between Niger, Burkina Faso and Ghana as the daughter of development workers, UNICEF was a consistent part of her life.
“When I was going to school, there was a number of my classmates whose parents worked for UNICEF,” Beth says. “And at the hospital my dad worked at, UNICEF was always there to weigh babies and conduct regular vaccination campaigns.”
“I’ve always been fueled by the desire to make a bigger and better impact,” Beth adds – a desire that is clearly reflected in her work, from organizations like the Canadian Cancer Society and Engineers without Borders, to founding her own organization – Amplify Governance International.
“When I found myself in the position to donate, I wanted to be smart about it,” Beth explains. “As a mother myself, maternal health was very important to me, so UNICEF, with all the work they do to support women and newborns, just made sense. In particular that Women UNlimited is working to support children in Ghana was a great alignment.”
Experiencing pregnancy herself, also lead Beth to reflect on what was considered the norm at the hospital her parents worked at; where pregnant women would travel for days, often while already in labor, to give birth at the hospital, and the ensuing complications that could arise from this prolonged stress. “It really challenged me to unpack my understanding of what accessible healthcare means.”
Today as the Director of Sustainability at New Gold – one of the youngest directors in Canada, and recently recognized by the Globe and Mail as one of Canada’s 50 2021 Report on Business Changemakers for the work she is doing in mining – Beth found herself uniquely positioned to support UNICEF’s work as a major donor.
“UNICEF can only continue their work if they are appropriately resourced. And I believe major donors can help support this. I want to show other millennial aged women that it can be done, that we can support organizations like UNICEF in a major way. The world really is so small, and we have to take care of one another, especially now.”
UNICEF Canada would like to thank Beth for taking the time to discuss her experiences with us. We’d also like to thank all the members of Women UNlimited for your continued commitment to defend every child’s right to a childhood.