KIN Community Champions

As we grapple with the barrage of information and change that has come with the Corona COVID-19 outbreak, many see the world as a dark and hopeless place. However, during these recent weeks of social isolation, where we work and learn from home, we have witnessed and heard of many acts of kindness, support, creativity and ingenuity from members of our KIN family – students, alumni, faculty and staff alike.

These acts of support show strength of character and KIN values of compassion and care for the greater good. These are characteristics of leadership, and they counteract the anxiety-provoking news that we are all exposed to as we desperately seek to find answers to the pandemic.

In a desire to recognize the beauty and goodness of the human spirit during these challenging times, we are introducing a new initiative called the “KIN Community Champions”. Here we will celebrate acts of goodness that model some of the leadership and community champions amongst us!

If you have a story of a UBC Kinesiology/HKIN/PE member who is working to support others, initiating programming and research with direct social impacts or facilitating transitions and awareness in the community, please let us know by emailing


Amit Sekhon

5th year Kinesiology, Interdisciplinary Stream

Amit demonstrates true altruism. Recognizing the need for healthy coping habits during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, he took the initiative to provide free online home workouts for people to follow.

Ava Katz

1st year Kinesiology Student

Ava rouses us to think beyond ourselves. She is a model of kindness to others and serves as the kind of leader who takes initiative to reach out to help those who are more vulnerable and who need assistance at this challenging time.

Isabella Funa

4th year Kinesiology, Interdisciplinary Stream

Isabella's desire to protect her mother during COVID19 demonstrates that acts of love have powerful ripple effects. Modelling service and support, Isabella established a project called Supply The Frontlines. As a result of her efforts, over 1000 items have been donated to the BC Children’s, Lions Gate, Surrey Memorial, and Royal Columbian Hospitals.

Nilanga Aki Bandara

1st year Master of Kinesiology student

Aki states, “the pandemic has completely changed our ways of life. Evidence from health care professionals working on the frontlines shows that their mental health has been negatively impacted by the pandemic.

Sam Vila

4th year Kinesiology, Health Science Stream

Sam’s passion for anatomy and physiology led him to volunteer for the Peer Assisted Study Sessions (PASS) to help other students practice the skills necessary for success. When COVID-19 hit, he worked quickly to innovate and bring PASS to an online system to ensure continued support and success amongst his peers.

Shaena Randles

4th year Kinesiology, Interdisciplinary Stream

Shaena went above and beyond to adapt core facilitation skills for PASS, and devised a novel, virtual study session. She was able to quickly transition an engaging learning system online in order to help other students’ academic success. In a time where social isolation is mandatory, she made sure that fellow students didn’t miss this learning opportunity.

ShareToCare – A story of humanity, compassion and hope


A story of humanity, compassion and hope in response to COVID19 by graduating Kinesiology students Sunwon Jessica Kim, Paniz Shirkhanlou, and Cierrah DiCesare

Evan Dunfee

BKIN 2014, Team Canada Athlete

Evan Dunfee is recognized as a KIN Community Champion for serving as a model of grace in the face of adversity during the COVID-19 outbreak and for inspiring us to serve the greater community. In his profile, he tells us about the power of a solo walk to clear our minds and to press reset.

Michael Averill

BHK 2006, Musician

Michael Averill is recognized as a KIN Community Champion who is utilizing his creativity to uplift us and bring us together in community, in the face of the social isolation of COVID. He demonstrates leadership and service by offering free, live online performances and jam sessions for everyone to participate in and express their feelings through music!

Milly Zaletelj

MA 2019, PARC Manager

Milly Zaletelj is a UBC KIN alumnus who has been selected as a KIN Community Champion. She is to be commended for her dedication to inclusion and accessibility for those with disabilities, and her commitment to ensure this community has continued access to resources and supports throughout the COVID-19 pandemic

Rosalin Miles

MHK 1998
Research Associate, Indigenous Studies in Kinesiology

Dr. Rosalin Miles models traditional Indigenous practices of health and wellbeing for herself, her family, her students and her community. She states, “The pandemic can provide us with opportunities to promote spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical health and wellness. Even though there is a need for social distancing, this pandemic has brought people together. “