2020 Outstanding Youth Volunteer – Isabella Coffey of Ottawa
From inspiring young volunteers to helping parents talk about brain tumours with their children, Isabella Coffey of Ottawa has become a leader in the brain tumour community.
The 14-year old is the recipient of Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada’s national Outstanding Youth Volunteer Award.
As the daughter of a brain tumour survivor, Isabella Coffey has been sharing hope and encouragement with the brain tumour community since the age of nine, when she first got involved with the Ottawa Brain Tumour Walk. She started out as a young volunteer before moving on to full-fledged committee member.
Isabella has been a reassuring presence at Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada’s Ottawa support group for the past four years. Her contributions have been invaluable to anxious parents, offering a youth perspective on approaching the subject of brain tumours. Her father, Pablo, is a brain tumour survivor, and he credits Isabella for his success in recovery and for motivating him to get involved in the brain tumour community. Her strength is a source of inspiration and motivation.
Adapting to changing times
During the pandemic, Isabella put her social media skills to use for the Ottawa Brain Tumour Walk, getting the word out across platforms and regularly attending Zoom meetings with the committee. Her tech prowess in creating videos and artwork has helped attract new audiences and spread awareness of brain tumours well outside of the community.
Isabella took to public speaking at a very early age – both for Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada and the Canadian Cancer Society. She has inspired her fellow students to get involved with the brain tumour walk, and has recruited many young and dedicated volunteers.
In a short time – and a such a young age – she has done so much for the brain tumour community, opening her heart, sharing her voice, and using her creative skills. As a daughter of a brain tumour survivor, Isabella is a pillar of support for all those affected by a brain tumour diagnosis.
Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada is incredibly proud of Isabella and the leadership and compassion she demonstrates at such a young age. She embodies the spirit of the Outstanding Youth Volunteer Award in a way that inspires all ages.
She will be receiving her award virtually this year, as part of Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada’s volunteer recognition ceremony Saturday, November 21. She is one of just three youth across the country selected to receive the honour.