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Black History Month profile: Peel CAS board member Kojo Odoom

Raised  in Ghana, Kojo came to Canada in his teens. “When I came here I lived in the Jane and Finch area.  Similar to my experience in Ghana, I saw signs of poverty and I was concerned with the challenges that came with lower income areas especially as it relates the youth” says Kojo. “I decided I would do what I could to support the community.”

Kojo attended York University where he studied information technology and accounting. He has worked in various accounting and technology roles, including time with Canada Revenue Agency and now works at TD Bank. 

“One of the ways I gave back to my community was to go to the high schools and talk to students about accounting,” says Kojo. “I felt that youth were not always aware of the opportunities that were out there for them. I want youth to know that they have a voice and there are people they can turn to for guidance.”

After previously volunteering on the Board of Directors for the Black Creek Community Health Centre, he felt joining the Board at Peel CAS would help him continue his commitment to youth and families. “I want to help out and help youth to have a voice,” says Kojo. He joined the Board in 2015 and feels that community building is a two way street; “I learn about the youth and their families and I hope that my work is making a difference in the community too.”

Kojo also supports two underprivileged students back in Ghana. Along with friends, he has been raising funds to assist these two youth who attend the same secondary school (Mfanstipim School) that Kojo went to.

During Black History Month, Kojo likes to take time for reflection. “I think that it is a time to reflect on the achievements by Black people throughout history.  It is important to remember the challenges we have faced along the way and also celebrate our accomplishments.”