Youth Advisory Council

Our Youth Advisory Council works with the Reel Causes team to inspire youth engagement and involvement in the community, and raise awareness about social justice, environmental and health-related issues. The Council is open to Metro Vancouver youth leaders, ages 13 through 19, and is a great way to make a positive difference with a dynamic group of peers!

To apply to join Reel Causes’ Youth Advisory Council, please contact Nicole at:



2016/17 Activities:

Youth Inspiring YOUth Video Project
The Youth Inspiring YOUth video project is a YouTube series aimed at shining a light on outstanding youth who have contributed significantly to their community. This project celebrates those who make a positive difference, and spreads awareness to the many issues that may go overlooked.

If you, or any youth you know fit this description – whether it’s leading a rally or planting a community garden – and would like to apply to have your project highlighted in our series, please visit:

2016/17  Youth Advisory Council Members:


Nicole Hou | Chair

Nicole Hou is a grade 12 student who manages countless initiatives using her business background along with her passion for eradicating injustice. After being involved with various youth committees, she noticed the lack of youth engagement caused by adult leadership. As a result, she founded Reel Causes’ Youth Advisory Council – a truly youth­ led council – to support Reel Causes’ mandate and activities. Through her work, she has advocated for the inclusion of individuals in their communities, regardless of age, ethnicity, gender, and economic status. She hopes the council will continue to ignite sparks and help others overcome adversity. Her other endeavors include binge ­watching Korean dramas, singing karaoke, and planning events for the public.

Denise Lee | Vice ­Chair

Denise Lee is a porpoise enthusiast, mediocre guitarist and future marine biologist from Vancouver, Canada. Inspired by the gorgeous Pacific coastline, this 16 ­year old yearns to explore the diverse wonders of the world, and share it with everyone she encounters. If not rehabilitating seal pups, she’s organizing sustainability conferences or connecting with like minded leaders. You can often find Denise exploring the outdoors, or perched on a cliff porpoise watching (can you tell she likes them?). She’s ecstatic to share her ideas and stories through the RCYAC, and hopes you enjoy them as much as she does.

Gamay Ngai | Secretary

Gamay is currently a grade 12 student studying at Eric Hamber Secondary School, and she is pleased to serve as the secretary for the Reel Causes Youth Advisory Council. She is anticipating the societal impact from the many projects that she, along with her team have been organizing, especially in the community of youth leaders. She joined Reel Causes for its unique mission statement, which is to combine the world of film and social justice into one to spread awareness about current global issues. She found this opportunity intriguing as she believes that the conflicts that separate us are very much issues that must be addressed in unity, as everything is interconnected. She has definitely been able to attest to this from many years of studying the world’s education systems and how it correlates to the culture and the economy of the nation. In her free time, Gamay loves to learn new languages, sing, and play the piano. If she’s not miserably failing at attempting to compose Beyonce’s next hit song, she is an active volunteer within her community, as well as other nonprofit organizations. She is confident that with her experience, she will be able to not only fulfill but exceed her responsibilities and implement altruism, passion, and leadership within her community.


Kitty Cheung

A dedicated student, Kitty often spends time at every teenager’s favourite hangout spot: the public library. There in her natural habitat, she can be found listening to Beyoncé songs through earphones, volunteering, finishing homework and plotting to take over the world. An inherent couch potato, Kitty has developed a wide range of motion picture interests: from old school mobster movies, to children’s animations, to nature documentaries. This contributed to her enthusiasms for film, social justice and profound discussion. After learning about this society, which combines all three in such an enlightening way through its screening events, she immediately chose to be involved in its youth council. She believes that a good movie can powerfully influence an audience. It can kindle strong emotions, change minds and aid in the sharing of insights and opinions. Kitty would like to use this opportunity to engage the public and advocate for a world of tolerance and unity.

Sherisse Chu

As a Grade 12 student at West Point Grey Academy, Sherisse is always searching for the next opportunity to bring awareness to people about the current issues facing the world. She was inspired by many short films and documentaries to get involved with social justice. After sharing so many videos with her friends and developing a passion for films, she immediately wanted to get involved with Reel Causes. In her free time away from schoolwork, you can find her running to her next play rehearsal, editing a YouTube video, curating a new playlist on Spotify, or falling into an endless black hole of independent short films.
Sanya Dhingra

Sanya, 15 years old and a Grade 10 student, is a budding artist and learner in the field of Indian Hindustani Classical Vocal Music and Indian Classical Dance “Kathak”. She is also a TV host on the TV show: Dhoop Chanon/Aapki Awaaz, an East Indian talk show that airs on Joy TV with the focus on subjects and topics related to youth. As an active volunteer, Sanja is part of Science World’s TAG 2015/16 & 2016/17 team, has raised funds for UNICEF, plans youth and cultural events, and inspires the community through her dance and vocal talents in festivals, fundraising events and celebrations. She plans to pursue a career in Science and Technology.

Janmie Gunawardena

Janmie is a Grade 12 student at Killarney Secondary School. She is excited to be a part of an organization that combines two of her passions: film and bringing awareness to different causes. She is especially interested in politics and human rights issues, and wants to bring attention to these issues through Reel Causes. In her free time, Janmie loves to pursue photography, videography and journalism. As a Member-At-Large, Janmie aims to contribute as much she can to the Reel Causes Youth Advisory Council and inspires the community to support and attend Reel Causes’ events.
King Hong

King is a Grade 12 student at Steveston-London Secondary School. He’s excited to be returning to the Youth Advisory Council for 2016/17 to help raise awareness about the issues that Reel Causes shares with the community. He plans to reach out to as many youth as possible to get them involved, and share what he has learned during his involvement as a Council member. After high school, King hope to pursue a career in business.
Zelyn Lee

Zelyn is a Grade 12 student attending Eric Hamber Secondary School. She is a colour enthusiast, part-time bassoonist, owner of an adorably fat Maine Coone cat, but above all, a movie-lover. Watching movies is a near religious practice dating back to family movie nights when she was just a wee child. (When she says “wee”, she means Blockbuster wee — that’s how committed her family was to movie nights.) Zelyn strongly believes in the power of film to create dialogue for social change and is super excited to be a 2016/17 member of Reel Causes’ Youth Advisory Council. Talk to her about Food Inc. or her latest obsession, The African Doctor – she’s always open for conversation.
Jack Xia

Kayla Zhu

Kayla is a student at Eric Hamber Secondary, an aspiring writer, a plastic frisbee thrower and a Lord of the Rings connoisseur. In her free time, she loves to hike, eat breakfast food, go bouldering, watch documentaries on North Korea, read, and partake in a myriad of clubs and theatre productions at her school. She loves to learn about and analyze new cultures, social issues and societal perspectives. From poor mental health care in Indonesia to a lack of Asian representation in Western media, Kayla can blithely write an essay about it. She continually seeks to learn more about the world around her, whether it be in the form of political platforms or how the moon affects the tides.