Ahava Shira – The Heartful Entrepreneur


Who are you?

I am a poet, storyteller, performer, photographer, and long-time journal writer. I am the founder of the Centre for Loving Inquiry, where I facilitate individual and group mentoring programs, retreats and home-study courses for people who want to bring more creativity and compassion into their lives. The practice of Loving Inquiry supports us to open our hearts and to engage with more kindness and curiousity toward ourselves and others.

I also work as the program facilitator for the Connecting Generations Program, which creates opportunities for conversation and learning between high school students, youth, adults and elders in the Salt Spring Island community.

I am the host of Love in the Afternoon, a radio show that walks listeners through the practice of Loving Inquiry, and encourages them to live with more creativity and compassion (on Salt Sprig Radio, CFSI 107.9FM or www.cfsi-fm.com online).

I am also the author of a book of poetry, Weaving of My Being and a poetry CD, Love is Like This. To learn more about my work visit www.ahavashira.com/

What do you do for fun?

I write, do yoga, walk in nature, hang out with my Goddess-son, listen to all kinds of music, host my radio show, make raw truffles, watch movies with my partner, play in a collage journal, read novels and non-fiction books on relationships, work and spirituality, sip tea in cafes and have wonderfully deep conversations with friends and clients.

What is your favourite community? Why?

The human and more-than-human community because I am intrigued and delighted by our interconnectedness. I live on a farm and find joy and refuge in nature’s variety and beauty.  I also love listening to people’s stories and learning about the diverse ways they live.

What is your superpower?

I am present and alert when I am speaking or being with others and that makes me highly intuitive and a really good listener. I am also very good at improvisation: being willing to “not know” what’s going to happen, to stay open and to say yes to whatever emerges in the moment. I use these superpowers in my work as a writer, facilitator, mentor, radio show host and as a speaker and performer.

How do you use it to build community?

In my experience, we build community when we are kind and authentic and when we share our unique gifts and ways of being in the world. Through the Centre for Loving Inquiry, Connecting Generations and Love in the Afternoon, I am helping to create a world that honours the diversity and interdependence of all people and all beings. In my writing and teaching, I seek to relate to people with openness, empathy and compassion.

My Three Favourite Things About Ahava Are…

1. Entrepreneurial Spirit. I love the myriad ways that Ahava both engages and builds community; from hosting a radio show to truffle making, she is an absolute model as to how the practice of education can uniquely realize its potential. Ahava speaks with authenticity and positive energy that captivates audiences and clients in a one-on-one environment and her many projects reflect the passion with which she connects with her community.

2. Connecting Across Generations. The Connecting Generations Program is just fantastic! Our elders have so many stories to share and so much history that can, well, warn us about mistakes we might be repeating and, more importantly, inspire us to build a better and happier future. Connecting youth and elders represents an unfortunate gap in many communities, and it’s inspiring to see how Ahava and her team are creating and sustaining such an important connection.

3. Lovin’ the Creativity! Reading this interview simply makes me feel love and creativity. Such things radiate from Ahava. And this is a beautiful thing!


Meet Your Maker

Maker Faire is the Greatest Show (and Tell) on Earth – a family-friendly showcase of invention, creativity, and resourcefulness, and a celebration of the Maker movement. It’s a place where people show what they are making, and share what they are learning.

Join the ultimate celebration in Making, tinkering, hacking, crafting and inspiring innovation at the PNE Forum on June 23rd and 24th.Originating in San Francisco, Maker Faire is a two-day celebration of making and creating. The Maker Faire mission is to unite, inspire, inform and entertain the general community.  It’s an all-ages family festival promoting the ethos of Do-It-Yourself (DIY) on a large scale.

Maker Faire is a fun, interactive collection of demonstrations, exhibits, workshops and displays.Some Feature Exhibits Include:

Maker Projects – a 3D printer village, an off-road wheelchair, a “bike car”, electric drawing machines, handmade, wooden instruments from locally-sourced materials, urban farmers, a Young Makers section, home-made surfboards, sand sculpting, an Instagram wall, and much much more, such as…

Workshops – A demonstration on how to make bamboo bicycles, mathematical crafts with GeoBurst, how to build bee homes with locally-sourced materials, learn how to knit, solder, and more!
Commercial Vendors: Instructables, Got Craft?,  Blim, Army of Evil Robots, Plush on Main, The Hackery, and more!
Musicians and Performance Groups
 – Legion of Flying Monkeys Horn Orchestra, flyingoctopus, The Carnival band, Mad Skillz Jugging festival and more!

Event Details:

Masthead photo courtesy of Dan Zen’s photostream on Flickr

Kevin Greer – The Editorial Associate (not Intern)

Who are you?

I am a six foot three, competitive yet an easy going student currently attending the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia. I love to express my opinion about many different topics, whether it be over the internet or a coffee. Appointed as  editorial assistant for the Daily Gumboot, my goal is to get all of the voices within this blog extended to a greater audience.

What do you do for fun?

I play extreme upside down turbo Ultimate Frisbee (what I like to call it), study, eat way too much Asian food, hang out with my awesome girlfriend Rosa and argue for hours about how we can change the world. I also spend an insane amount of time tinkering with my computers.

What is your favorite community and why?

I enjoy any group of entities that merge to share their stories. It can be as small as a woman and her dog to the massive scale interactions that occur within a city such as Vancouver. Everyone has a story to tell and I guarantee that others will want to hear it. I also find global communities arising through the help of the internet groundbreaking and controversial.

What is your super power?

Having mad hops to jump over anything including the literal, factual, metaphorical and figurative obstacles of the world while simultaneously aiding others to do the same.

How does your power help you to build community?

I have one simple motto which builds community personally, locally and globally: help others.  I may procrastinate, J-walk and sleep in (I am not perfect, just close) but I always do things with the needs of other people as the number one priority. I thoughtfully use these so called ‘hops’ to inspire, lead and present ideas to others unselfishly. My goal is not to be the richest man in the world, simply someone who has the skills and attitude to construct, as well as develop, community and relationships.

My Three Favourite things about Kevin Greer are…

1. The cut of his jib. Kevin the Intern lived on a boat for a year or so and this experience certainly refined his sense of self – he might be 18, but he carries himself in a way that suggests he’s 18 going on 30. Also, his nautical sense and boat-savvy makes him the most pirate-like member of the Daily Gumboot team.

2. The Toolkit. Business + Computer Science + Innovation + Entrepreneurial Spirit + Sex Appeal = Kevin Greer. Kevin came to our first meeting with a lot of ideas that he is carrying out as we speak, and it’s pretty darn inspiring.

3. Lifelong Learning. Kevin the Intern Editorial Associate is the kind of guy who will just keep getting better with age – knowing what I know about the career potential about mid-to-late-twentysomethings here in the Lower Mainland, I can safely say that the young and talented Mr. Greer is well on his way to being a thought/business leader in Vancouver and beyond well before his time. No pressure though, pal.

On behalf of the Daily Gumboot team, thanks for all your hard work, Kevin!

…As told by John Horn…

Harpaul Sambhi


1.Who are you?

In short – batman. Kidding aside, I am a recent graduate (2009) from the University of Waterloo that finally finished the 5 year program for Electrical Engineering. Most of my co-op terms were doing entrepreneurial ventures. I think of myself as a very approachable guy who likes to help people with their careers and simply network. Careerify is my second venture which I founded in 2008 while in fourth year. I often skipped classes to network with the business community in my area (which was often Toronto), went off to places like London, Barcelona and Rome when I wasn’t supposed to (thank god I had a great lab partner!) and enjoys everything I do, because if you don’t, life tends to suck when you’re always complaining.

2. What do you do for fun?n36404624948_7278

Just ran a half-marathon last year, training for a full-marathon. Love to grill as the BBQ is my best-friend in the summer. Like to spend time with my friends, play hockey and golf occasionally, and will be getting back into martial arts to complete my blackbelt (currently two levels away). I also categorize my work as being fun, as I meet with great people, try to see how I can connect my network together, and writing a book with Thomson-Reuters on social networks and HR.

3. What is your favourite community and why?

If you mean community as a place – definitely Toronto, although I have my eyes set on the Big Apple. I love the fast paced environment of any big city as it motivates me to do my best. The Go-go-go environment speeds up my heart, and is one of the reasons I want to get out of bed.

4. What is your superpower?

“Unlike most superheroes, he does not possess any superpowers; he makes use of intellect, detective skills, science and technology, wealth, physical prowess, and intimidation in his war on crime.”

When I am myself my superpowers is connecting and helping people.

5. How do you use it to build community?

To build any community, you need to fight off evil and the villains that usually come with the territory. In this case, evil is deemed as unemployment, and procrastination. Unemployment can be defeated by connecting two people and allowing true networking to come into play as people know other people. This can go a long way for those looking for their first employment opportunity and are having a difficult time fighting off the evil unemployment villain with tools like job-boards and newspaper ads. Careerify is a new tool that zaps energy out of evil pretty quickly, as it speeds the process.

Tune in tomorrow — same Bat-time, same Bat-channel.

My three favourite things about Harpaul are…

1. The Power of Relationships. A former student of mine introduced Harpaul and I because “it’s always great to bring good people together.” We’re all connectors, methinks. It’s just a beautiful thing when people who can learn from each other get connected. And who doesn’t want to be connected to Batman?

2. Innovation and Future Trends. Many human resources professionals, career development practitioners, educators, and recruiters believe that the traditional “job board” – be it paper or online – will cease to exist by 2020. By then, the experts say, employers will find, hire and retain employees through social networking. Harpaul’s business, Careerify, combines the concepts of LinkedIn, e-Harmony and Visa Rewards to personalize the employer-employee matching in the world of work. And he’s ahead of his time.

3. He’s an Entrepreneur. As the Daily Gumboot’s readers (ie. my parents) know, I’m a huge fan of entrepreneurship. I’m also a huge fan of people finding the most meaningful path into the world of work, where, believe it or not, we will spend most of our lives. Did you know that 80% of North Americans are dissatisfied with their jobs? Cures for such malaise are the entrepreneurial spirit and finding work that you really, really, really love doing; and mediums like Careerify are what bring such qualities together.

As told by John Horn…

Callum Ng

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, welcome to an ongoing segment here at The Daily Gumboot. It’s called “Get to Know Your Community” and, basically, it goes like this: each and every Sunday we will profile someone from a community somewhere. Each person is asked the same five questions (see below as well as in the “Ideas from Everywhere” page). At the end of the profile, the Gumbooteer (member of this blog’s Editorial Board) who found the person will list their three favourite things about the highlighted community member. Savvy?

Here are some ideas from everywhere. Here is one way that we try to build community. Have fun with it!

Callum Ng - we love him even though he's a Flames fan!

Callum Ng - we love him even though he's a Flames fan!

Who are you?

My name is Callum Ng, I’m a proud Canadian, an athlete and an eternal entrepreneur. I might be a bit of a self-starter, I own and run two local Vancouver companies including www.ngfarrell.com. I have this idea, and I know I’m not the only one, that a life in business should encompass some greater meaning or purpose. That’s why we work for the benefit of athletes and artists, those people that really enrich our society, those who we cheer for, and applaud.

What do you do for fun?

What don’t I do for fun? I love to play hockey with my brother. In fact, we’ve both become quite obsessive, we’re like kids, counting the days until the next game. I write a lot, and hope to inspire people with my blog (link to: www.callumng.com). Finding new topics to write about isn’t difficult the challenge is making them exceptional. What else…well my work is actually fun! I spend time with passionate and excited people. I like to laugh. Friends and television are good for that. Constant laughter is important.

What is your favourite community and why?

Don’t hate me but I love Kits. There’s a variety of people here, some you can get to know and get along with, others you can learn from, some that are just like me.  I can walk to the beach. I can walk to the park. I can walk to the forest. I can see the mountains, and the ocean. There’s okay food, it’s easy to be active and healthy, and totally relaxing to be lazy and unhealthy. The point is: you can be whoever you want here, it’s easy.

What is your superpower?

My super power is my relentless pursuit of an idea. If it gets in my head, and I believe it can be great, it will happen.

How do you use it to build community?
I believe that almost anything can be willed into existence. The combination of passionate people and a goal that is for the betterment of a community will ultimately succeed in the long run. I use my “superpower” to bring people together, foster a work ethic, and execute a well-developed plan. To be honest, if we’re not all working for this type of goal, we should re-evaluate what we’re working for at all.
My three favourite things about Callum are…
  1. He is an entrepreneur. Whether it was Total Home Services or NG Farrell, Callum is driven by an amazing entrepreneurial spirit. Such passion and style makes him ill-suited for work in a cubicle in a giant corporation and, in my opinion, his success as a varsity athlete and academic all-star also stems from the self-motivation, goal-setting and balls-out hard work that defines not just entrepreneurship, but people who are great entrepreneurs.
  2. He knows trends (and makes trends, too). One of the more recent trends that I’ll claim Callum started is wearing donning business-casual attire (jacket, dress shirt, jeans, boots) sans-belt (that means “without a belt” for all our non-Quebec readers). Lucky for us, we’re two fellahs that can openly discuss fashion and each others’ handsomeness, so I’ll add to the list that Callum is also a stylish and confident young man, too. Now, I see people wearing suits with no belt all the freakin’ time. And I’m pretty sure Callum started it. But I digress… Callum’s company, Total Home Services, was carbon neutral before it was cool to be so environmentally friendly, too. His blog has a Guy Kawasaki-esque feel to it, as Callum provides insight and opinions about the things the mainstream, regular and Foxy media are going to talk about in, like, three weeks. He gets to an idea first and flat-out does a better job of spinning it.
  3. Giving becomes him. “As always, let me know if you need anything!” This is how Callum signed off an email to me. As busy and client-focused as the guy is, he always makes time to help out and continue building his community. Yours truly and The Daily Gumboot are lucky to be a part of it. Thanks, Callum.
As told by John Horn…