Thi Be Nguyen Founding-President
Tell us about your family history, where you are coming from? I'm Vietnamese born in Vientiane, Laos. My family fled to Canada after the Vietnam War. We stayed in two refugee camps for nearly a year in Thailand before immigrating to Canada, with the help of Canadian sponsors through the government refugee program called Operation Magnet II. I always thought that because of my parents sacrifices and courage, I was privileged to graduate from Concordia University in Montreal and living the amazing life I so cherish today!
Tell us about a struggle you once went through and how you managed to rise above it? We immigrated to Canada, with no more then the clothes on our backs and a few gold necklaces my parents had in case of emergency. Although I had no memories of my childhood at the refugee camps, I clearly remember we lived poorly for a few years because my parents saved everything to be able to have enough funds to buy a house and open a small business. I remember eating bread with butter and sugar everyday when we were children. Our treats would be eating a $1 burger at McDonald's or dividing in three a Jos Louis cake. Things got very well until I had to leave the house when I turned 25 years old and wanted to succeed on my own. At that time, I had to take on 5 part-time jobs even when I had a Bachelor Degree in University. Without connections, it was very difficult but perseverance and hard work finally pays off. Throughout my life, I've always been a positive thinker and I choose to be happy because we only have one life to live!
What inspires you in life? I get inspired by my surroundings, by the people I meet everyday, by what I learn and experience. I love discovering new things in life. My head seems to always have ideas! So many things inspires me and I wish I may inspire others so they can achieve their full potential!
What is your moto in life? With compassion, hope and action, we can all influence positive change in the world!
Why create the Social Impact Film and Art Festival? I started the concept of this project in late 2017 because I wished to create an event and a plateform that would have a great impact for the creative industry around the world. Social concerns and positive change has always been part of my life. I believe that art is a powerful vehicle that can bring awareness and influence positive change in the world. Through this festival, I hope to give filmmakers, art producers, not-for-profit organizations and anyone sensible to social issues to showcase their projects.