Live Different

Live Different

About

Live Different is a Canadian charity that exists to engage and empower youth toward a lifestyle of compassion and service. Through our high school motivational presentations in Canada and our humanitarian volunteer opportunities in The Dominican Republic, Mexico, Haiti and Thailand, we work together to make the world a safer, better, and more hopeful place for those in greatest need.

Founded
2000
Headquarters

Suite B3, 15 Wellington Street North
Hamilton ON L8R1M7
Canada

Reviews

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Danica
10/10

In my experience completing the Live Different Academy was one of the best things I could have done at that point in my life. In my grade 12 year I knew exactly what school and program I wanted to do in University but something inside me told me I was meant to be doing something else. I had previously volunteered on Live Different builds and I had formed a strong connection with this organization, so I decided to go for it. I found that I got so much more out of the academy experience than I ever could have imagined. I gained experience volunteering abroad in old age homes, a women's shelter, an after school program, and I had the opportunity to teach English twice a week. Beyond this I was able to learn so much about myself through living in a different country in a new culture. I found that Live Different did an amazing job facilitating this experience through their strong communication skills prior to the academy and the level of safety that Live Different provided ensured that we all felt safe and comfortable throughout the experience. I also found that the Live Different staff throughout my experience did an exceptional job explaining the things we were doing, why we were doing them, and how what we do impacts other people. The biggest thing this experience taught me is that life is more important than the things you own, it is about who you are and the people you surround yourself with. My biggest take away is that there's always an opportunity to be kind to others, and do what you can to help those around you.

Yes, I recommend
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Chelsey
10/10

The Live Different Academy program initially appealed to me as I wanted to travel, but have purpose and value along with it. I wanted to be surrounded by culture, rather than blinded by tourist influencers. Live Different gave me this and more! I could have never imagined how much I would grow personally and mentally through this experience. It was so much more than I expected. I could go on and on about my experience, but the most valuable offering LD gives to each student is the opportunity to not only be immersed in the culture, but the ability to develop meaningful relationships with everyone you encounter. Live Different is established enough to introduce students to local families, where you can spend time building a relationship with a family, inside their own home- an experience hard to come by without an organization like this. If personal development, broad education, and an experience of a life time interests you, the Live Different Academy program is for you! I attended the LDA, while I was 22 and thought I mostly "had myself figured out". In the year prior, I had graduated college, moved cities, lived in my own apartment, and worked my dream career. When I became interested in the LDA program, I gave it all up. LD was able to show me that I was capable of growing more and more and I can confidently say it was worth it!

How can this program be improved?
My experience with Live Different was incredible and there is nothing I would change. Live Different works hard to continually improve from year to year based off of alumni experiences and opinions.
Yes, I recommend
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Jessica
10/10

I participated in a house build with McBride Secondary School back in March of 2016. The experience in itself was amazing! Everything from meeting locals, to eating local cuisine, to playing jump rope with the young children was incredible. It truly made you think about how different your life is compared to place in poverty. An incredible moment of the trip was being able to bond with those who travelled with you. Coming home, I talked and socialized with people who I was never close with with. I highly recommend the program to any one. A few tips are to start fundraising early. Although the cost is for an amazing cause, it adds up quickly! For future participants, I just want to highlight that if you go with an open mind and heart, you’re definitely going to leave a little bit of yourself there. I see pictures all over the place of house builds and it takes me back to a time that I will never forget. A place of discovery, happiness and love!

How can this program be improved?
A more detailed itinerary would be lovely! Just more so what buses you’ll be travelling in. Maybe a picture of where you’ll be staying. Little things to make those travelling a little more comfortable and prepared!
Yes, I recommend
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Jayme
10/10

It's been two years since I was in the DR, but it feels like yesterday. When I went, I was fresh out of college and high on myself, figuring I'd take this volunteer vacation and gain some good karma...little did I know how much those 10 days would change me.
My entire perspective on life has changed and it started on that first night when Cole said "being one person, maybe I cant change the whole world, but by deciding to dedicate my time, and my energy, I WAS going to change the world, for a whole family".
It's hard to come back to Canada and all it's luxeries and complain about minor inconveniences when you've got the image of the world's happiest kids in the back of your mind, and knowing that those same kids have next to nothing to go 'home' to.

The staff at Live Differnt are incredible and really relay a sense of family when you work with them. I've been lucky enough to work with some of them since my build when I joined the LD road team last year - another positively life changing, eye opening, heart warming, inspiring journey.

When you work/volunteer with Live Different, you leave heart happy.

Yes, I recommend
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Lisa
10/10

I have traveled to Haiti twice with Live Different and both times I left a little more of my heart there. I honestly don't even know where to begin. How these trips made me feel is hard to put into words. I found myself feeling very overwhelmed at the desperate need in Haiti. Being a nurse I found myself constantly shocked at the health disparities present and the unfathomable conditions people are living in. I also couldn't help but think about all the seemingly simple "fixes" like basic health education or proper garbage disposal and how much of a difference these things would make yet how unattainable they are in these countries.

Doing the day in the life experiences was definitely a highlight for me. Being able to interact with the families and have them open up their homes to us was very humbling experience and one that I will cherish for years to come. Being able to make a meal with the families, clean their home, and even make the long arduous trek just to get water everyday had such an impact on me it is hard to put into words. To say that it was eye opening is an understatement. Getting home and being able to just turn a faucet and have all the clean water you could ever want in seconds really puts it all into perspective.

The Live Different staff are amazing and definitely help make the trips all that they can be. I never felt unsafe and always knew I could rely on them to ensure we had the best experience possible. The knowledge they have surrounding the country, it's poverty, and culture is vast and results in trip participants coming away with new insights and perspectives that will ultimately change and reshape how they see the world and how they can have a positive impact in changing the world in only the best ways.

More than anything I would have to say they interacting with the families and children of the community is what really made the trip for me. Seeing how happy and loving those kids are despite their shocking poverty and living conditions is beyond words. Goodbyes are usually hard for me but saying goodbye to these children, families and this country was one of the hardest goodbyes I've ever said. All I can hope is that it's not goodbye but "see you later".

Yes, I recommend

Programs

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