April showers bring May flowers, and for Krista Phillips at Lynn Valley Optometry, May is the month her dreamed-about non-profit endeavour will finally blossom.

Krista is part of a team of young people who are travelling to an impoverished area of Mexico to  work with small communities and help meet some of their needs. Krista is hoping people who are interested in promoting this kind of work will consider donating towards the group’s trip (donations must be collected by April 14). Read on to hear more about the project, in Krista’s words:


Tell us about the project!

For two weeks in May, I will be going to the Copper Canyon in Mexico with a team of young people from Coquitlam Alliance Church. While in the canyon, we will be spending time with the Tarahumara Indians and bringing food and supplies to them in their very small, impoverished communities. We will spend some time in the orphanage in Guacayvo, help to build a church, and be hiking into other remote areas of the canyon. We plan to bring food and clothes, and I’m hoping to bring some glasses as well.

What inspired you to get involved?

It broke my heart when I heard that the people had been collectively jumping off the cliffs as families in order to avoid dying from starvation. I really felt called to go do what I could to help, even if it’s only for a short time.

What is your biggest hope for the trip?

That’s a tough one, mostly because I really don’t know what to expect. I know it’s going to be a huge leap out of my comfort zone to be in a completely different country with different culture and way of life, but my hope is that I can make a difference to the people there.

What kind of support are you looking for? Be specific as you can.

Thoughts and prayers are a huge one. Mostly for health and safety while we’re away. I do have to raise funds for my portion of the trip as well, and donations would be immensely appreciated. We can offer tax receipts as well.

What do you do at Lynn Valley Optometry?

I get to be the one who helps people pick out a fabulous pair of frames and match the best type of lens for them to see. I love it. The patients and customers we have are the best I’ve ever worked with, and at Lynn Valley Optometry, we really are a work family, not just co-workers.

Have you been involved in community projects before?

Over the past two years, in the winter months, I’ve collected warm articles of clothing, blankets, socks, etc. for people in need in Vancouver, as well as the Coquitlam area. I am currently trying to get involved with Habitat for Humanity as well, but my schedule hasn’t co-ordinated with their orientations yet. I’d love to find other projects to get involved with though, because I am really discovering my passion for outreach!


Thank you, everyone, for your help. The support I’ve already received has been overwhelming!