As musical theatre professional and environmental educator, Vanessa LeBourdais uses art for social change in the most extraordinary ways.
In the true SFU pioneering spirit, she founded DreamRider Productions in 2002, a non-profit theatre and multi-media company that inspires, engages and empowers school-aged children to take action on environmental issues. DreamRider reaches over 70,000 children each year with funny and engaging musical plays about serious issues like climate change, water conservation and zero waste. Almost 300 metro Vancouver schools receive DreamRider plays at no cost thanks to innovative partnerships Vanessa has formed with municipal water, waste and sustainability departments.
She is also working on a new interactive game called Planet Protector Academy, which has shown that 49% of participating children changed the transportation and energy-use behaviours in their families, and 75% got their families to save energy.
Thanks to Vanessa's enthusiasm, creativity and artistic talents, soon an entire generation of Canadian children will be empowered and inspired to drive change in their families and their communities to protect the planet and their future.
Submitted by: SFU Alumni Relations