I am Jenna Smith and I was born and raised in Montreal.
For the past 15 years, I have directed the Innovation Youth centre under Christian Direction. I am passionate about the intersections between faith, community, and urban work amongst those who live on the margins of our society. I work mainly out of the Peter-McGill neighbourhood, located in the western part of downtown Montreal. I love this area of our city – it is a beautiful and complex neighbourhood where many people from different walks of life co-exist: university communities, homeless peoples, urban dwellers, newcomers, entrepreneurs, and workers.
In my work at Innovation Youth, I see how those on the margins – youth, immigrants, families living under the poverty line, the elderly – often become forgotten or overlooked in busy city life. I consider it as part of my job to love my neighbours – ALL my neighbours – to understand them, seek them out, and to try and help them feel like they belong. I view part of my ministry in helping my fellow Christians in local churches do the same – understand who their neighbours are and how to best serve them. In this sense, I try to build bridges between church, community, and city life.
I live in Verdun with my husband Nicolas and our dog Wilma.