Meet Sara Badiei, the Liberal Candidate for Port Moody - Coquitlam.
To see the map of the Port Moody - Coquitlam Riding click here.
My Debt to Canada
Growing up as an immigrant, I remember my parents constantly moving from country to country, looking for a peaceful home where they could find work and their three daughters could go to school. With each move, my parents had to start again from square one. Yet each time, with hard work and dedication, they created something beautiful out of nothing. Those early years taught me to work extremely hard, live life without fear and take risks when I believe in something. This is a lesson I've put to use again and again.
After years searching and dreaming, I still remember the first day we arrived in Canada. I instantly felt free, proud and Canadian. And at home!
Finding a calling through Math and Engineering
My first passion was math! I remember taking my calculus and algebra textbooks to the family picnics. I studied electrical engineering for my Undergraduate and Master’s degrees at the University of Toronto and the University of British Columbia, respectively, and quickly began my career in the energy sector at BC Hydro.
Throughout this entire time, I felt a strong pull to use my skills to give back and make a difference in the lives of those people who hadn't shared my good fortune in being able to immigrate to Canada. This calling pulled me into the humanitarian aid and international development sectors.
USING MY SKILLS TO HELP PEOPLE AROUND THE WORLD
Over the last 12 years, I've had the honour of leading projects that helped over 3 million people in communities in need, for employers including Doctors Without Borders, the Canadian Red Cross, the International Committee of the Red Cross and the World Bank as well as energy providers in Canada and the United States.
I have led teams in conflict zones and amidst disease outbreaks and natural disasters in countries including the Philippines, West Bank and Gaza, Israel, Jordan, Yemen, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Chad, the Republic of the Congo, and Tanzania.
My expertise is in energy and water infrastructure programs. I analyse projects for governments and industry leaders around the world; assessing needs, costs, and impacts; and recommending policy reforms and investment priorities. I have served as the official representative of the World Bank on the ground to senior members of national governments, industry leaders, United Nations agencies and intergovernmental agencies.
My dream was always to use my skills to serve communities and make people's voices heard. Over the past decade, I was fortunate to live out that dream in ways I never imagined.
Raising a family and paying it forward to Canada
In 2014, I met my best friend and now husband, Ali, a Canadian physician, while we were both posted overseas by the Canadian Red Cross. Over the years, we took many overseas assignments together, but in 2017, when we became proud parents of a beautiful baby girl named Aya, (born 1.5 months premature) we decided it was time for a new phase in our lives.
The Port Moody and Coquitlam communities have been my family’s home and anchor for over a decade. This is where my parents, sister, grandmother, aunt, uncles, cousins and extended family have all lived. This is where I want my daughter to grow up, canoeing in the Burrard Inlet, hiking around Buntzen Lake and going for picnics with her family at Rocky Point Park. Maybe she will bring her calculus books too!
In this next phase of life, I envision raising my family in Canada and pouring my heart, soul and energy into my own local community at home. I want to pay it forward in Canada, and to Canada, fighting to make sure the next generation of Canadians, regardless of their background, religion, race and gender, can reach for their dreams and pass it forward like we did.
Please come meet us! Between my husband and I we speak English, French, Farsi, Dari, Mandarin and Spanish fluently with some Arabic, and Russian as well. Come and introduce yourself in your own language!