Q&A – Jamie McDonald, Co-Founder of Superhero Foundation
International Youth Day 2017
The theme of International Youth Day 2017 is Youth Building Peace and the day is dedicated to celebrating young people’s contributions to conflict prevention and transformation as well as inclusion, social justice, and sustainable peace.
In the spirit of inclusion, Thursfields’ Equal Allies Committee conducted Q&A interviews during August with two inspirational professionals who encourage and influence young professionals in their careers; James Conrad Williams, Deputy Editor of Glamour Magazine and Jamie McDonald, Adventureman, Author, Speaker, Co-Founder of Superhero Foundation.
We hope you find these Q&As as interesting and inspiring as we do.
Thursfields’ Equal Allies Committee.
Jamie McDonald, Adventureman, Author, Speaker, Co-Founder of Superhero Foundation
Q1. Who inspires you?
When I was running across Canada, receiving a message like this, “Hey Jamie, As you head into what might be the hardest and most dangerous part of your journey, I thought it might inspire you to be reminded what you are running for. You might recall a little boy named, Samuel, who you met in the city of Thunder Bay. Well, Sammy’s cancer has returned and he is out of treatment options. For now, we are enjoying every day and he is living a full, joyful life as best he can. It is devastating for us, obviously, but it is also motivating to make sure you know that what you are doing is going to help change the outcome for kids like him in the future! As a normal mum, I have to say first “Be careful, Jamie.” But as a mom of a child facing the end of his beautiful life, I say “Keep going, Jamie!”
Q2. What would you be doing now if you were not in your current profession?
Probably still tennis coaching, feeling very unfulfilled.
Q3. As an inspiring person, what one top tip would you give to someone looking to emulate your success?
Don’t worry about success, focus on making a difference.
Q4. What is your single biggest achievement?
Running 5,000 miles (or 200 marathons) across Canada on my own raising £250,000 for children’s hospitals across the world.
Q5. If you could go back 5/10 years and give yourself once piece of advice, what would it be?
Stop drinking beer, the world needs some help!
Q6. Why is equality and diversity important to you?
Everyone just needs to be accepted for who they are. The faster we feel comfortable about who we really are the faster we can make a difference to help others.
Q7. What do you consider some of the particular challenges for LGBT youth today / in your profession?
None. I think!
Q8. What have been some of the most exciting changes you have seen with regard to support for LGBT youth?
People are becoming more open minded.
Q9. How do you think the progress in LGBT rights has helped you personally in your life as well as your career?
I don’t think it has to be honest.
Q10. Do you like marmite?
YES! (Only if it’s thinly spread!)