Leanne Prendergast is the Co-founder and President of the Love Our Lives Organization, a nonprofit organization which focuses on helping girls and young women to live happy and healthy lives. Born in London England, but migrated to Canada at the age of 7, Leanne has spent the last 10 years of her life understanding bullying and its long term effects using her own experiences and the experiences of others.
At the age of 12, Leanne and her older sister had both been victims of bullying and had reached their breaking points. Their concerned mother watched both her children feel isolated, rejected and hurt. She suggested that they write their experiences as a way to help other girls who were going through similar experiences. As a result, Leanne and her sister published their first book, Getting to Know Me, when Leanne was 14. As a result, Leanne founded the ‘Love Our Lives Organization’ which addresses issues of bullying, isolation, low self-esteem, depression and even suicide. Leanne’s work has been recognized both nationally and internationally as her work connects with youth as well as elders alike. Her vision through Love Our Lives is to give young girls and women the tools to support the processes of restoration.
Leanne is a respected motivational speaker, activist and is a voice of change, both nationally and internationally. Leanne speaks frequently at conferences and other events, such as WE Day, the American Education Research Association, and has been a guest speaker at the University of Toronto, Trent University, Mount Sinai Hospital and she has even done a TED Talk.
In addition to much of the work that is done in her community, Leanne has been recognized for her work as she has received many awards. Leanne is a fellow of the Royal Commonwealth Society, whereby she has continued to develop her abilities, display confidence, show empathy and provide service to others. Leanne is also the recipient of the Commonwealth Youth Award, the Top 20 Under 20 National Award, the Harry Jerome Award for Leadership, the Attorney General’s Victim Services Award of Distinction, the Louise Russo W.A.V.E. Award, the Leading Women Building Communities Provincial Award the John Brooks Award and scholarship, the BBPA Scholarship, the EFCCC Scholarship, and the CYSA Scholarship for her work in leadership and community development. Leanne is also a certified Red Cross Educator, specializing in Healthy Youth Relationships and Bullying Prevention. In 2017 at the Harry Jerome Awards, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau mentioned and praised Leanne’s work and impact in Canada.
In 2016, Leanne graduated with an honorary bachelor’s degree in Human Rights and Equity studies from York University. She also graduated from the Entrepreneurship Development Program for Not-For Profit Organizations established by YEDI and Schulich’s School of Business. Leanne has successfully completed the Queen’s Young Leaders Program from the University of Cambridge, in England and a graduate certificate in Human Rights Law from PennLaw School. Leanne is currently enrolled in the Community and International Development Masters Program at Andrews University in the United States of America.
Today, Leanne creates practical programs using a unique method called P.E.A.R. (prevention, engagement, action and resilience) which helps to provide girls with the necessary tools to tackle mental illness and everyday challenges. Leanne continues to work on programs and ideas that help build self-esteem and confidence in girls, while providing the necessary tools to shape a future generation of resilient and self sufficient young women. As she works toward implementing these programs within the education system, her aim is that policies will be put in place to address the travesty of bullying and its ongoing cycle within our society.
“If girls don’t know what love looks like when they look at themselves , how will they go out into the world confident and empowered to make a difference? One thing is for sure, whatever they do, will be a reflection of how they see themselves.”
– Leanne Prendergast
“You are more than good enough to be loved because you exceed all requirements.” – Leanne Prendergast