Brighton Neighbour Feature No. 1
Tell us a bit about yourself and your family
I am Shakya; a born and raised island girl from Sri Lanka who traded the deep blue oceans and all-year summer weather for Canadian golden prairie sunsets and below 30 temperatures. I moved to Saskatoon, Canada when I was 19 with my family. Halfway across the world, thousands of miles away from the island, I met my husband Udara; a fellow island boy from the motherland. We dated for 6 years and got married 4 years ago and are now parents to an energetic little toddler named Ushal Koah.
Both Udara and I graduated from the University of Saskatchewan. Udara is a Civil Engineer by profession (works for Stantec). He works on the bridge-group so you could say he’s sort of a bridge nerd. And I work as the Director of Growth for Vendasta (a local tech company). I am passionate about female empowerment, gender equality, and diversity in the workplace and community.
During my volunteer hours, I sit on the board of Saskatoon Open Door Society and also support the emerging local tech community by working as a Tech Start-up Mentor for Co.Labs a provincial tech incubator. We both love traveling and always looking for our next adventure but of course, the last 14 months have been just about spending time with our little family in our little home. And during our free time… haha no we don’t have any of that. Did I not mention, we have a toddler lol
Why did you choose to move to Brighton and what do you like most about living here?
We love the community here. Our neighbors are so welcoming and mostly very diverse. It was very important to us to start a family in a neighborhood that was well represented and inclusive and I think we found that in Brighton.
What do you like the most about the street you live on?
What do you love most about your home?
We did a lot of work to our house ourselves to make it our own. We love the backyard and the work we’ve put into it. It’s not our forever home but we are loving the memories we are making here. This is the first house we owned, the house we brought our little boy home to. It will always be so special to us.
What is Ushal’s favourite thing about the community?
He’s also made so many friends. Probably more than we have. He loves riding his little balance bike outside and saying hi to all the little dogs that are out for walks. He took his first steps at this home and hasn’t stopped moving since.
What is something unique or something special about your family.
I am a big foodie and food is definitely my love language. I love cooking and trying out recipes. Udara is a huge basketball fan and so is our little boy. Other than that, we are pretty normal humans. A little island family here in Sask, trying to race a kind-hearted bi-cultural little Sri Lankan Canadian boy.