Volunteer profile: Manreet Birdi | Makeup Artist & Door-to-Door Campaigner

My team has so many talents - writing, policy, scheduling, video editing, and helping me get the word out. Manreet is a key member of my door knocking team. Her energy and interest in municipal politics is so refreshing!

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Manreet Birdi

Makeup Artist &
Door-to-Door Campaigner

Volunteer Name: Manreet Birdi
Role: Makeup Artist & Door-to-Door Campaigner

When did you decide to get involved in a municipal election campaign?

I met Jen while we were volunteering in the 2018 Provincial Election. I have had experience campaigning in the previous municipal election in my hometown, Brampton. I have always had a love for politics and community coordination/programming. Growing up, I was surrounded by political debates and conversations within my family and community. Being involved in political campaigns, like Jen's, is not only going to be a fun experience to meet people and help strengthen the community, but it will be very beneficial for me in the long run as someone who has always dreamt of working in the political field.

Why do you think Jen will make a great councillor?

Jen is a very kind and strong woman. Although I have only known her for a couple of months, the time I have spent with her has always been a great time! She is incredibly passionate about community and social development and has worked in this field for a number of years. She truly cares about making the community better by working together to solve issues that residents are facing. In my personal experience, seeing her so determined and dedicated to achieving her goals is very inspirational and motivational for a student like me.

Jen completed her Bachelor's degree in a similar field as me in the arts/humanities sector, so being able to witness a strong woman who is so dedicated to her family, her jobs, and her goals and witnessing someone who has (and continues to) improve herself educationally and career-wise is something that I very much look up to.

What is your favourite thing about the City of Waterloo?

I have lived in Waterloo for only a year now because I moved here for school. Although I have been here for such a short period of time, I consider Waterloo my home. It is the perfect mix of the city, suburbs, and rural area. I grew up in Brampton which very urban and suburban area, so it was an easy adjustment moving to Waterloo. My favourite section of the City of Waterloo is UpTown Waterloo, where I can go to many local shops and support local businesses. I also love the suburban area with smaller, old-time brick homes that I truly love the look of. Overall, I love the community in Waterloo. Coming from Brampton, which has a large South Asian population thus making me more used to South Asian people around me, I have really been able to witness what true diversity looks like and become a part of this community.

What do you think is the biggest issue residents in the City of Waterloo are dealing with?

I think the biggest issue residents are dealing with in Waterloo is a lack of community. With my experience working for other candidates, I felt that one of the biggest issues Waterloo residents (especially older residents) told me about was that they feel disconnected from other residents, their neighbours, and with their politicians.

Why should residents care about municipal elections?

Municipal elections are incredibly important for a resident to be heard. In bigger elections, such as provincial and federal, many voices of the residents are muted due to the size. For a resident to be heard, they must start small and municipal elections are great for that. Furthermore, municipal elections allow for the community to come together to discuss and fix smaller issues in the community. Politics will always affect you in Canada regardless of who you are, so it is critical for people to pay attention to upcoming elections and select a candidate that will be the best voice and leader for their community.

Jen Vasic