Define Passion & Purpose For Me

Really, when you think about it, the words passion and purpose are fairly ambiguous, imprecise, possibly even shadowy terms. As organizers, you’re probably wondering what Stacey and I were even thinking when we coined our tag line:


We began with the assumption, based upon our own experiences, and the stories and insights of our friends and family members that most of a person’s big decisions are made within the framework of societal norms, and family expectations. Laura Koch, Suburban Mom to Rockstar, summed it up so eloquently here: “graduate high school, go to university, get a job, climb the ladder, find a spouse, buy a house, have kids, and get a dog.”

That is not to say, of course, that our journeys don’t become personalized by our lived experiences, our likes and dislikes, and our talents and skills; but when life happens it’s also very easy to lose sight of, and eventually give up on the crazy dreams we secretly nurture.


Why are they crazy? Who said your dreams were crazy? Who told you your dream was too impossibly big? Or too different, and nobody would buy it, or visit it, or read it? Who said there was no money in it, or that we don’t do that in this family? Challenging someone’s dream doesn’t even have to happen in words. It can happen through indifference, or through subtle sabotage that undermines a person’s confidence, their self-esteem, their belief in themselves.

Think about this:

  • Mocha Ochoa-Nana grew up in Edmonton, AB. She currently lives in Washington, DC, and is the Founder and CEO of The Oracle Group International, a literary PR firm. Her clients are world-famous authors. Do you think she believed her dream was too impossibly big?
  • Eyoälha Baker is a Vancouver-based artist, photographer, and muralist with an international reputation. She’s currently the Artist-in-Residence at the Palm Springs Cultural Center in the Coachella Valley, CA. Nobody stopped her from believing in herself, and the possibility of making a living from her art.


Pursuing your passion is, quite simply, doing something you love. It’s an interest, or an activity that fills your heart with joy, and it’s the dream most closely connected to your heart. We believe, and our Speakers will tell you through their stories, that when you immerse yourself in your passion, by learning, exploring, and participating, you will find your purpose. It will manifest itself in the way you choose to share your passion with other people.

And, the examples:

  • Angie Quaale has worked her entire life in the food and hospitality industry, and she loves it! Now co-owner of Well Seasoned: A Gourmet Food Store, Angie volunteers extensively with local business organizations, serves on the Langley Township Council, and will see her first book, Eating Local in the Fraser Valley, in bookstores in May.
  • Bryan Gidinski has been an educator for more than 20 years, and is also a writer, which has led to the creation of rich writing experiences for his students. He has a graduate degree in Literacy Instruction, and is the Founder of Lost Boys Consulting, through which he shares his innovative strategies for instruction with other educators.
  • Makenzie Chilton was employed as a counselor in the prison system for 4 years, and loved it. Laid off three times, followed by a deeply unfulfilling stint in administration, she decided it was time to take the best of what she loved about her job, supplement it with specific training, and become a business owner/career coach at Love Your Mondays. Now, through Makenzie’s perfect job, she helps others find their perfect job!

If you’ve discovered that your path is not heading towards happiness and fulfillment – and you don’t know how to change that – then the Speakers at The CREATIVE CHANGE-MAKING Conference may be exactly the people to meet.

~ Debbie MacLeod

Photo via @secrets2success 

The CREATIVE CHANGE-MAKING Conference has been organized to showcase local heroes, individuals from within our own communities, who are creating their own path, leading by example, and following their dreams through purposeful work.

Intrigued? Come listen to the stories. Ask questions. Be inspired to change your life!

Ask Angie About Volunteering

The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away. — William Shakespeare

Meaningful work can be found in almost any direction; the search is never a simple straight line. Volunteering for a cause you care about may help you to define your purpose. On the other hand, maybe the volunteer work becomes your purpose, or your purpose evolves into employment in the not-for-profit sector. The beautiful thing about volunteer work is that while it may benefit us personally, giving freely of our time to help others is the better part of it. And, if you think there are limitations on the type of volunteer work available, think again!

Volunteeer word cloud began its life in 1943 as the Central Volunteer Bureau of Vancouver, and has expanded into an organization that connects volunteers with not-for-profits throughout BC and Alberta. While it still provides volunteer matching services, its organizational focus has shifted to include the professional development of not-for-profit leaders. Here’s their list for areas of interest:

  • Arts & Culture
  • Education & Research
  • Immigrant Services
  • Sport & Recreation
  • Capacity Building
  • Environment & Animals
  • Indigenous Services
  • Philanthropic
  • Volunteerism
  • Community Development & Housing
  • Family & Children
  • International Development
  • Religion & Spirituality
  • Women’s Services
  • Disability Services
  • Health, Social Services
  • Law, Advocacy & Politics
  • Seniors
  • Youth Development

Instead of, you may choose to contact your organization of choice directly, or the regional volunteer bureau in your community. Depending on the type of position, you may be required to complete a Criminal Record, or Vulnerable Sector Check. For more information, please check the RCMP website.

A partial list of Volunteer Bureaus:

Angie QuaaleAngie Quaale, entrepreneur, elected Councillor, and one of our Panel Speakers at The CREATIVE CHANGE-MAKING Conference, is also a longtime volunteer. Angie has been a board member with the BC chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier, the Pacific Northwest BBQ Association, the Greater Langley Chamber of Commerce, Tourism Langley, and the Langley Community Farmers Market.

If you have any questions about community service, Angie is the one to ask! Listen to her story, and speak with her directly on May 26th, 2018!

~ Debbie MacLeod

The CREATIVE CHANGE-MAKING Conference has been organized to showcase local heroes, individuals from within our own communities, who are creating their own path, leading by example, and following their dreams through purposeful work.

Intrigued? Come listen to the stories. Ask questions. Be inspired to change your life!