Shanika was just seven years old when she moved from Jamaica to be reunited with her mother who had already been living in Canada for five years. With child-like optimism, Shanika eagerly anticipated living with her mother again, but she could not have imagined or predicted what the future would hold. Due to a tenuous relationship between Shanika and her mother it did not take long before CCAS became involved. By her 15th birthday, Shanika was brought into care and afraid of what life in-care would be like for her. Always optimistic, Shanika attests that it was her attitude that made all of the difference. “I always knew I had to be successful and I took coming in to care as an opportunity to do just that,” says Shanika.
Shanika is a university graduate with tremendous drive and enthusiasm. Having completed Ryerson University’s Social Work program with the assistance of a scholarship from the Foundation, she says the scholarship had an enormous impact on her life.
“It meant a lot. It meant that there are people rooting for me. It meant that I was doing something right and I was being recognized for succeeding,” said Shanika. “I am on my way to success. My goals do not end at finishing school. They transcend beyond that.”