“For me, a storyteller is someone who’s curious about other people and their inner and outer journeys. This is why I love listening and interacting with the people around me.”
Aya is 23 and a CBC journalist focusing on community stories residing in Halifax, NS. Writing has always been influential in Aya’s life. She told me, “My mom was someone who deeply respected and admired the journalism profession. I remember her saying that good stories can have a strong impact. All of that captivated me, especially as a young girl who found it very hard to fit in at school. I didn’t feel like what I said or wrote mattered, so the idea that I can be part of a platform that values my voice and the voices of others appeals to me.” One of her proudest achievements is when she won first place in a short story competition because “I didn’t expect it at all and I was literally jumping up and down from the excitement.” Aya’s favourite quality about herself is that she loves to uplift others. She continued, “What inspires me the most is the people I meet and talk to for stories when I’m at work. I can say that so far I’ve met with diverse business owners, artists, mothers, refugees, students, community leaders, and many more. And these people have shared their expertise, intimate stories of hardship, hopes for the future or their achievements with me. I’ve learned so much from them and I still am. Listening to them has really opened my heart and mind.” Aya’s biggest hope is “to see more diversity in newsrooms across Canada. To see more people of colour, LGBT folk, and people with disabilities as journalists working in television, radio, and web.”
What is your favourite hobby or pastime?
"Journaling and reading fiction. I’m very word-centric."
Where is your favourite place to find yourself?
"By the ocean."