• Kashmiri Overseas Association of Canada

President Desk

Background Snippet

Pooja Ganju

I am a Kashmiri Pandit from Srinagar (Jammu & Kashmir), proud great grand daughter of Prof.Nand Lal Kaul Talib, an author and writer honored by President of India, received President’s National Award Winner and Shri Arjun Nath Muttoo Landlord from Srinagar. Married to a Kashmiri pandit and blessed with two kids.

At home, maintained a balance of east and west cultures, proudly celebrate our Kashmir traditions, food, customs, festivals, like Herath (Shivaratri), Navreh, Zyeath-Atham Zarmae-Satam (Janmashtami), Pan (Roth Puza / Vinayaka Tsoram / Ganesha Chaturthi), Gaad Batt, Khetsimavas, Ashtami, while keeping our language intact and celebrate western festivals too. We moved from Boston, Massachusetts and our Canadian journey started back in 2004. We were all alone, had no family or friends in this country to support us but faith in our Kashmiri heritage and culture coupled with the love of the KP community in Toronto, Canada lead us to believe that we made the right choice. Its been over 16 years blessed by our close knitted Canadian Kashmiri Pandit community showering us with their love, warmth, support, and blessings each and every individual brings a special persona and is an inspiration to last forever.

Professional Snippet

Being a strategic visionary, MBA specialized into Information Technology Management, with over 15 years of experience as an accomplished global head of human resource, people and culture leader. Leading, managing and nurturing professional teams across geographies. Expertise working with large, complex organizations across different industries at a leadership role while partnering with cross-functional business leaders, attracting, engaging, and retaining top talents. Awarded and recognized for excellence at North America levels for designing, driving and implementing on diverse corporate projects, programs, policies and to meet business objectives and scaling strong company culture and initiatives organization wide, result focused.

Awarded as inspiring leader passionate about coaching and developing team members to achieve their career goals and fostering a high performance, highly engaged team. Building innovating solutions to complex business problems /issues follow-through by facilitating or leading solution implementation. Believes in team empowerment and customer success as a mutual collaborative goal tied to business.

I have a proven ability to influence and drive change with management teams across organizations while aligning people strategy with values and goals. Drove improvements, streamline execution while partnering with business leaders and improve quality. Discover, build, and nurture industries talent and world-class teams. Empower people to make the right choice. Strides in People, Process, and Technology in alignment with the company's vision, mission, and goals.

Giving back to Community

I ‘m passionate about making a difference while contributing to the success and creating better outcome for our communities. I have strong will to lead the change that I want to see in the community. Humbled and honored to commit my time, energy and efforts to serve my community. Ready to erase the borders that are creeping in our community. Ready to work with other organizations. Ready to amalgamate the new with the old. Ready to blend established koshur traditions with Canadian values and Ready to create a balance between the needs of our children, youth, adults, and seniors. As your representatives will always be a part ‘of the community’, will stand ‘for the community’ and will usher the change that is desired ‘by the community’

“Don't Just
Don't just learn, experience.
Don't just read, absorb.
Don't just change, transform.
Don't just relate, advocate.
Don't just promise, prove.
Don't just criticize, encourage.
Don't just think, ponder.
Don't just take, give.
Don't just see, feel.
Don’t just dream, do.
Don't just hear, listen.
Don't just talk, act.
Don't just tell, show.
Don't just exist, live.”
― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart

President's Role and Responsibilities

How we make difference

President Message# 1

Around the country community foundations are an integral part of a thriving philanthropic environment. KOAC is no different and it is my honor to serve as the President of our Kashmiri Overseas Association of Canada.

The leadership position that KOAC holds within Canada is a privilege. It is not something to be taken for granted, and never a status over which to become complacent. Our community and its members are not just everything to KOAC in this regard: They are the only thing. The purpose of the Society is to serve the social, cultural and economic needs of the Kashmiri community in Canada and, thereby, contribute to the multicultural mosaic of Canada.

We live in challenging and uncertain times. While there is much that is unknown about COVID-19, there are many "knowns" in our community: We have deeply committed non-profits working hard to ensure that our communities remain safe, healthy, and thriving. We are committed to be collaborative, nimble, and ever-present in these challenging times. Our objective thereby is to create an "effortless experience”, we recognize that we must be competitive, recognize that we must be competitive, responsive, proactive, building smart solutions, established new missions, developed programs while enhancing best practices and relentlessly committed to the requirements of our community with minimal operational disruption. We pride ourselves upon our professionalism, our experience, our commitment and most of all, our community-first philosophy. We are not perfect, but our resolve is to give our community members the assurance that we will relentlessly act in their best interests, regardless of the circumstances. Our successes depend on one another, and our challenges are shared challenges.

We are just so incredibly grateful, to all of the healthcare assistants, officers, community nurses who are risking their lives as frontline workers. Also wanted to express my gratitude for receiving all the valuable intelligence, diverse perspectives, and continuous feedback from our community members, our taskforce teams, and our executive committee members showcasing team empowerment and mutual collaboration. These volunteers provide service to the organization. They commit their time, creative energies, and reflective analytical skills. Let us acknowledge these accomplishments, even within difficult times, so that we can move forward together to build a stronger future for our region and beyond.

Thank you for taking the time to read this message and demonstrating your commitment to doing philanthropy the right way and supporting our community. It is impressive and encouraging to discover how we are building a sense of belonging, sharing research, leading with compassion, and supporting our community. Our entire executive committee looks forward to working to advance the vision of a caring, safe, and thriving society through this crisis and beyond.

President Message# 2

Warmest wishes for a joyous holiday season and a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year. The holidays are a festive time of year when we share special moments with our family, friends and loved ones, and look ahead to a new year filled with promise and opportunity. We reflect upon our many blessings, and are grateful for the sacrifices being made by our officers and public safety personnel who protect our nation, safeguard our freedom, and secure our liberties.

During this season of hope and joy. I offer my sincere thanks to all of our community members neighbors for your continued collaboration, cooperation, and support. You are the foundation of KOA.CANADA and your active civic engagement contributes significantly to the progress and advancement of our society.

I also express my appreciation to the entire executive committee and all volunteers of KOA, Canada for your dedication, commitment, and service to our community. The outstanding work you perform each and every day meeting the needs of our community enhances quality of life and exemplifies what building community is all about.

In the spirit of the season. I commend all those community members who have made a special effort to give back to the community. Our countless community volunteer programs, initiatives, thousands of you are spreading goodwill throughout our community with open and generous hearts.

As the New Year approaches, it is truly an exciting time to be in Canada. It's an understatement that the past few months have been challenging. Our whole lives have been disrupted. Under challenging circumstances we stayed true to our values, rallied together, and we kept going. Amidst the pandemic, we achieved significant successes throughout 2020

Though lot remains to be done, we have made important progress towards sustainability, wellness, programs, and initiatives, as well as equity, diversity and inclusion. We are deeply based in our values, that lays out our shared aspirations and that will guide us into a successful future. As we look forward to new and exciting opportunities that lie ahead, we remain committed to leaving no stones unturned, and we remain passionate about working cooperatively with all of you to make KOA Canada, the best place to live, work, play. visit and raise a family.

My warmest wishes to you and your loved ones for a joyous holiday season, and a happy, healthy. and successful New Year. May God bless you and your families and our communities at global scale.