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SPARK a Change September 2015

September 2, 2015

SPARK Month is this October – in less than four weeks! Officers, don’t forget to register your chapter’s #SPARKaChange event! Members, please participate in impacting and improving the lives of at-risk youth!

As of 1 September, chapters have dedicated 40,007 hours, touched the lives of 39,430 people and raised $10,310 towards SPARK a Change since its launch in July 2014. These collective actions are impacting the lives of youth around the globe and helping us to reach our goal!

Follow #SPARKaChange on social media. Be sure to follow Golden Key on Facebook and Twitter as well as SPARK on Instagram for articles on the benefits of volunteering and posts featuring great SPARK events. If you think your chapter has a great event, please email your event details and pictures to:

September Featured Service Project:

This month’s featured service project is from Norfolk State University.  The chapter has a long standing project called “NSU GK’s Spark The Future Initiative.” The chapter collaborates with the Virginia Commonwealth Challenge Youth Academy’s Mentoring and Tutoring Program. The partnership has been going strong for three years. The Academy is a program that targets youth ages 16-18 who are at the greatest risk of dropping out of high school.  This program assists those students in obtaining their high school diploma or GED and preparing them for life after graduation.

Due to the success of the collaboration, the NSU chapter has been asked to merge with a new project that will help to mentor students who choose to enroll in Norfolk State University and ensure that they keep up with the academic standards with hope to help the students become inducted into Golden Key.




2015 International Summit Highlight Video

August 27, 2015

Earlier this month, we posted a recap blog detailing the happenings of our 2015 International Summit on the Gold Coast, Australia from 16-19 July. Now you can see it for yourself!

We’re excited to share a highlight video of the conference:



An Evening with Janine Allis, Founder of Boost Juice

August 17, 2015

Janine Allis of Boost Juice

On Monday 27 July 2015, Golden Key members from around Melbourne, Australia were given the opportunity to hear from incredible entrepreneur, Janine Allis, the founder of Boost Juice.

The Australian Catholic University (ACU) Golden Key chapter hosted 150 Golden Key members and alumni at their Melbourne campus, where Janine shared her personal journey and tips for success.

Janine Allis is a self-made businesswoman who took an unconventional journey to success. She opened the first Boost Juice store in Adelaide, Australia from her kitchen bench, and grew it into an international brand. Boost Juice Bars have grown to over 350 stores in 17 different countries. Janine is also part-owner of Retail Zoo, the parent company of Boost Juice, Salsa’s Fresh Mex Grill, CIBO Expresso and Hatch. She is also a regular “shark” on Network Ten’s Shark Tank Australia, a reality competition TV series where aspiring entrepreneurs present business ideas to a panel of “shark” mentors.

From the get-go, Janine captivated the audience with her laid-back and witty sense of humour. She candidly revealed her journey to success, through travelling the world and working odd jobs ranging from a media assistant, to a stewardess on David Bowie’s yacht, to senior manager of a Singaporean cinema chain – Janine experienced it all! Upon returning home to Australia, and having children, she noticed a hole in the Australian fresh juice market and capitalised on the opportunity.

Despite having no formal business training, Janine’s passion helped her business grow into an international success that has made over $2 billion in global sales since its inception. Whether it be life or business, Janine emphasised the importance of choosing a partner who will always encourage and push you forward, rather than confirm your fears and hold you back. Throughout her speech, she often mentioned and credited her husband and business partner, Jeff Allis, for his support in her journey.

At the conclusion of the evening, Janine participated in a Q&A session with Golden Key members, who asked questions varying from how to start your own business, to what qualities you should look for in a partner!

ACU Golden Key would like to thank Golden Key Asia-Pacific and the Golden Key Victoria Alliance for their support and enthusiasm in hosting this successful evening with Janine Allis.

The University of Winnipeg Chapter’s Golden Future South Africa Project

August 14, 2015

Golden Future South Africa.jpgTwo Golden Key members from the University of Winnipeg, Jason Yang and Patricia Joven, recently returned from the Golden Future South Africa project in May. The project aimed at improving the lives of the youth and community members in one of South Africa’s most vulnerable communities, Khayelitsha. Launched in 2007 by the former University of Windsor Golden Key member Gary Kalaci, the organization has grown over the years and it is now partnered with various universities in Canada. The University of Winnipeg has just joined the project this year.

The executives of the Golden Key UWinnipeg Chapter first heard about this project during the Golden Key Regional Summit in 2014 where the project founder, Gary Kalaci, made a speech on community service. The UWinnipeg Chapter recognized it as a great opportunity to reach out to help the youth in need, and a great approach to promote international solidarity within their own campus. They decided to make this project one of their chapter service initiatives. And, this project fell perfectly in line with Golden Key’s SPARK a Change initiative. Launched in July 2014, SPARK a Change’s mission is to impact and improve the lives of at-risk youth (ages 0-17) through literacy, education and real-world preparedness. Through SPARK, Golden Key aims to raise $40,000, dedicate 400,000 hours of service and impact 400,000 lives in local communities & around the world by 2017. These efforts are helping Golden Key reach this goal.

Since September 2014, UWinnipeg chapter has recruited their own volunteers, and organized multiple fundraising events through the school year, including a fundraiser Gaming Night and a crowd funding website, in order to provide financial supports to the volunteers. At the same time, volunteers were trained with different modules in Life Skills, Sexual Health, Education, and Business.

In May 2015, along with another 25 volunteers from Windsor and Toronto, the UWinnipeg team travelled to South Africa to provide their services to the community of Khayelitsha. Jason and Patricia were a part of the Sexual Health team, which was focused on promoting safe sex and sexual consent in the local high schools. During the course of two weeks, Sexual Health team alone, 8 of them together, taught more than 60 classes and reached to approximately 1800 students. They were so glad to see their efforts were making small differences day by day, and they were so proud to be a part of the project representing their own school and their Golden Key chapter.


New University Relations Officer Spotlight: Christian Nabung

August 10, 2015

christian_APACWe are excited to introduce you to a new University Relations Officer that recently joined the Golden Key team! Christian Nabung is now overseeing the Eastern Australia & New Zealand chapters from our Asia-Pacific office.  Get to know him better with this Q&A.

Where did you grow up? I was born and raised in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs and grew up next to the glamorous waters of Bondi Beach. My father is of Filipino and Spanish Descent whilst my mother is English. I’m a dual citizen, having both an Australian and English passport.

Where did you go to university? What did you major in? I’m currently studying at Sydney University where I’m one subject away from completing my Bachelor of Arts. I’ve always been very interested in reading, music and more broadly, popular culture. Due to this, I’m completing an English Literature and Gender studies double major. I also completed a number of music subjects within the degree ranging from performance to composition.

What are your hobbies? I love my rugby, music, reading, film, chess and interacting with as many new faces and personalities that I can! In summer, I can be found at the nearest beach or pool.

What is your favourite sport? I’m a devout Rugby Union and Cricket fan. I still play rugby on Saturdays during the winter season. Ill give just about any sport a ‘go’ and love being as active as possible.

What is your favourite movie? That’s like picking between your children! (in no particular order); The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Pulp Fiction, Shawshank Redemption, The Lion King, Gladiator, A Clockwork Orange.

Tv Show? The Simpsons and Game of Thrones.

Favourite Musicians/bands? The Smiths, Jeff Buckley, Velvet Underground, Radiohead, The Beatles, Elvis and Bowie.

Favourite Quotes?

You’re going to reap just what you sow.” Lou Reed, Perfect Day.

“The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.” Aristotle.

What excites you the most about working at Golden Key? I’m very passionate about getting individuals to achieve to their capacity. Liaising with some of the very best University minds means that I’ll be nurturing the leaders who will inevitably be our innovators and architects of the future. This is a hugely exciting prospect for me! I also love travelling, so visiting new territories, states and countries whilst working is a dreamlike opportunity.


Welcome to GK, Christian!

SPARK a Change August 2015

August 6, 2015

As of 1 August, chapters have dedicated 39,848 hours, touched the lives of 37,849 people and raised $8,690.43 towards SPARK a Change since its launch in July 2014. These collective actions are impacting the lives of youth around the globe! (Chapter leaders, please remember to record your events on the Golden Key website promptly after the event so we can include your accomplishments in our monthly statistics.)

Follow SPARK a Change on social media. Each month, Headquarters will be posting a challenge and a contest for SPARK a Change. Be sure to follow Golden Key on Facebook and Twitter as well as SPARK on Instagram for articles on the benefits of volunteering and posts featuring great SPARK events. If you think your chapter has a great event, please email your event details and pictures to:

August Featured Service Project:

This month’s featured service project is the SPARK a Change project at International Summit 2015.  Golden Key teamed up with FSG Australia, a for-purpose community organization and center for social enterprise whose mission and vision is to have a community that connects with all people and is free of social injustice.

 Attendees were randomly split up into groups for the three different projects.  The projects were: (1) soy candle making where the proceeds go towards underfunded children’s programs, (2) learning how to paint from indigenous artist and then painting boxes for children in foster care, and (3) a Brains Trust activity where participants were given a problem or project that affected the local community that they were asked to solve or assist with. Through the hard work and dedication of the GK members present, 645 hours of service were completed and 3,260 lives were touched in only two and a half hours of service!



2015 International Summit Recap

August 3, 2015

Pursue Your Path in Paradise. This was the theme of our 2015 International Summit on the Gold Coast and what a paradise it is! With its world-famous beaches, the Gold Coast in Queensland, Australia was an incredible setting for our very first International Summit outside of the US!

The 2015 International Summit was held at the beautiful Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort & Spa from 16-19 July. With more than 300 members, advisors, alumni, partners and friends attending from all over the world, this year’s International Summit was a not-to-miss event!

Thursday, 16 July was the first day of the conference. The delegates arrived throughout the day and visited the on-site registration for their name badges, conference goodies and t-shirts. They were then broken up into groups for the Amazing Race. Teams raced around the city doing challenges like eating Wheat-Bix and naming Australian animals. The Amazing Race gave delegates the chance to explore the city, learn about Australian culture and make friends from around the world prior to the conference start.

AmazingRace1    AmazingRace2

Then it was time to officially welcome everyone at our conference kick off, the Opening Session! Opening Session started off by celebrating each country present by having the Council of Student Members (CoSM) representatives from each country walk on stage carrying their flags. Brad Rainey, Golden Key Executive Director, welcomed all attendees and played a video that recapped all of the wonderful accomplishments of our chapters over the past year. Next, it was time for our keynote speech from Michael Crossland. Timothy Ng, Council of Student Members representative from The University of Waikato, won the opportunity to introduce Michael.

CKCN-aqVAAAMmVrDiagnosed with aggressive life threatening cancer before his first birthday doctors told Michael school and sport were not options. Infection and fatigue were too great a risk. His only wish was to lead a normal life and be able to do all the things that other ‘normal’ kids took for granted every day.

Now, an accomplished businessman, Australian of the Year finalist, Australia Day Ambassador, Camp Quality Ambassador and international hall of fame inductee, Michael inspires many people from all walks of life with his story and inspiration of believing in yourself and achieving the impossible dreams. Michael has an absolute passion and belief in people’s ability to change direction and become who they truly want to be and achieve success. We then had the amazing opportunity to induct Michael as an honorary member.

“It was an awesome night speaking at the Golden Key Summit and to get a lifetime honorary member was extremely moving & a standing ovation was overwhelming,” Michael said. “The world is in good hands with the future leaders from Golden Key.” The overwhelming response from delegates was that Michael was one of the most inspirational speakers they have ever heard. “I loved Michael Crossland. He energized me in a new way and made me want to do more for the world,” one delegate said.

The Opening Session was a great way to start the conference! Afterwards, delegates were then given the chance to network and mingle at the International Meet and Greet Mixer. This closed the first night with a wonderful opportunity to make friends and connections from around the world.

Day 2 (Friday, 17 July) started up with our Plenary Sessions where delegates were served a light breakfast, heard an update from headquarters and were given a chance to ask questions about the Society.

11755879_10152961730747050_5988143949054901713_nThroughout the day on Friday there was a large variety of workshops that delegates could take part in. From chapter specific lessons to personal/professional development workshops to a track specifically for chapter advisors, the workshops had something for everyone! Attending the various workshops to grow professionally and take lessons back to one’s chapter is the most important part of the Summit.

One delegate told us: “There was a broad range of workshops which was good to know. I followed the personal development path pretty closely and I enjoyed nearly all of the talks given. The workshop leaders were fantastic at connecting with the audience and presenting their content in a concise and effective way.”

Examples of some of the workshop titles were: Maximizing Your Career Opportunities With LinkedIn, Running with Scissors – How To Create Balance, Maximizing Your Chapter Success through Strategic Collaborations, Secrets of Advisors, and How to Nudge: Implementing Change Within a Workplace.

Several other activities happened throughout the day. Golden Key held its second Poster Session. Delegates had the chance to display their academic work for the chance to be awarded scholarship money. All attendees were welcome to visit the Poster Session to view the academic work of the participants. On the last day we were able to present the Poster Session winners with their checks. The winners were: Simangele Msweli from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Tanyaradzwa Mushohwe from Stellenbosch University, Carlee Toddes from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, and the overall winner, Fadzai Muramba from the University of Cape Town.

image7 11742765_10152961846177050_7080151717176682493_n

Following lunch there was a Career Panel that discussed how the job market has changed over time and where it is globally. The panel was made up of guests from recruitment agencies and those working in senior operation positions and career development. Attendees had the chance to ask the panelist questions and learn more about personal branding, interview and resume preparation, career change and succeeding in the workforce.koala

After the workshops concluded, advisors were taken to Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary to enjoy a night dedicated to appreciating all of their hard work. Advisors were able to mingle with Australian animals like koalas, crocodiles and kangaroos!

Saturday, 18 July was the Day 3 of the Summit, where our SPARK a Change service activities were the main focus. service2_7287277382273796843_nThose participating in the service projects were welcomed and learned about the organization we teamed up with: FSG Australia. FSG Australia is a for-purpose community organization and center for social enterprise whose mission and vision is to have a community that connects with all people and is free of social injustice.

Attendees were randomly split up into groups for the three different projects. The projects were: (1) soy candle making where the proceeds go towards underfunded children’s programs, (2) learning how to paint from indigenous artist and then painting boxes for children in foster care, and (3) a Brains Trust activity where participants were given a problem or project that they were asked to solve or assist with.

service3           service1

Through the hard work and dedication of the GK members present, 645 hours of service were completed and 3,260 lives were touched in only two and a half hours of service done on Saturday!  We hope each of the attendees will leave this International Summit and head back to their local communities to continue to SPARK a Change and helping us accomplish our SPARK goals of 400,000 hours of service, 400,000 lives impacted and raising $40,000 by our 2017 International Summit!

Attendees also had the chance to attend additional workshops if they did not want to participate in the service projects.

That evening, the Red Carpet Reception was held. Those that registered for this additional event had the opportunity to mix and mingle with Simon Griffiths, a social entrepreneur and the 2015 Closing Gala keynote speaker. As 6:00 p.m. rolled around on Saturday, it was time to close out the conference at the Gala.

Attendees were welcomed to the Gala by Kelly Jo Miller singing with Edmond Chung accompanying on the piano.  Next it was time for our contest winner Nkateko Mathebula from the University of Pretoria, who won the chance to introduce our Closing Gala keynote speaker, Simon Griffiths.

11017510_10153442357854293_7792325761537067900_nIn 2007, after turning down his dream job offer as a corporate high-flyer, Simon moved from Australia to South Africa to immerse himself in his true passion: development aid. There he discovered that the biggest problem faced by NGOs and social entrepreneurs is a lack of funding. Since then he has launched three social businesses of his own, all focused on revolutionizing the way society thinks about and engages in philanthropy.

Simon’s latest venture is an ethical home products company. Its flagship product is “Who Gives A Crap”, an environmentally friendly toilet paper that uses 50% of its profits to build toilets in the developing world. He is also well knowSimon_honmembern for his work as co-founder of Shebeen, Australia’s first non-profit bar. Shebeen sells exotic beer and wine from the developing world with the profit from each sale supporting a project in that particular drink’s country of origin. After Simon’s wonderful keynote address, we had the privilege to induct him as a Golden Key honorary member.

“The keynote speaker was excellent and I thoroughly enjoyed listening to Simon Griffiths. He was very relevant and inspirational,” one attendee told us. “The food and venue were excellent, the music was superb, the energy was contagious, and the reveal of the next summit location made me really excited to try and go next year!”

KeyChapterNext an excellent three-course dinner was served. After dinner, there were just a few more things to wrap up. We were very excited to present Key Chapter recipients with special plaques. The Key Chapter Award is a very special honor and only the most esteemed chapters receive it. Then the Poster Session winners were announced and a few surprise scholarships were awarded.

Before we officially closed the Summit, we revealed the location of the next GK International Summit: Tucson, Arizona! The announcement was a great way to end such an amazing event. GK members, see you in Tucson in 2016!

The night ended with attendees letting loose on the dance floor!

Golden Key would like to send a huge thank you to everyone that attended and helped out at the 2015 International Summit!

Check Golden Key’s Facebook page this month for pictures and videos from International Summit.



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