Our Team

“I want to give back because much has been given to me.”

ERIC RAJAH

Executive Director and Co-founder

Eric Rajah co-founded A Better World in 1990 with his friend Brian Leavitt. Since then, he has held the role of Executive Director. Eric is passionate about helping and inspiring people both around the world and at home. He’s traveled with over 2,800 volunteers to project sites in Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, Bolivia, and Afghanistan. Eric loves enabling and encouraging young people to follow their dreams of helping others as well.

“I want to give back because much has been given to me.”

“A dream was developed 30 years ago to do something to make the world a better place. ABW has been the fulfillment of that dream.”

BRIAN LEAVITT

Project Director and Co-founder

In 1990, Brian Leavitt started A Better World with his friend Eric. Since then, he has traveled many times to East Africa to assess projects and project sites. Meeting with community leaders, teachers, and medical professionals, Brian ensures that each community we serve is working toward their development priorities. Brian is currently retired and working as a volunteer with ABW; he lives in Lacombe, Alberta, Canada.

“A dream was developed 30 years ago to do something to make the world a better place. ABW has been the fulfillment of that dream.”

Board Members

RON SYDENHAM

President, Board of Directors

Ron is a retired head pastor of College Heights Church in Lacombe, AB. He has volunteered for ABW since 1998, first as the head of the
Steering Committee, now as the Board Chair. He has traveled with ABW several times to East Africa and Belize, as well as to Haiti and Louisiana for relief efforts.

“I volunteer for the privilege of learning from other people and cultures, and to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem.”

STU MACPHAIL

Vice President, Board of Directors
Water Program Manager

Stu has volunteered with A Better World since 2004 where he has focused on our water program and project monitoring and evaluation. He has been on many trips to various project locations and is currently the ABW Water Program Manager. Stu retired after 35 years in the Oil & Gas Industry, where he was most recently Executive VP of Corporate Development for the Parkland Fuel Corporation.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to volunteer with A Better World. Seeing lives changed and saved through the water program has inspired me to give back.”

JULIE LAPOINTE

Secretary, Board of Directors

Julie (right) first began raising money for A Better World when she was in high school, collecting the necessary funds to build new classrooms and toilets at the Kiprengwe Primary School in Kericho, Kenya. She traveled to the site herself for the first time in 2006 and since then, she has been actively involved in engaging with students to raise money for communities in need. Julie is now a teacher at the Ponoka Secondary Campus where she continues to undertake projects with A Better World while inspiring the next generation of humanitarians in her own classroom to make the world a better place.

GORD BONTJE

Member, Board of Directors

Gord is a Founding Partner of Laebon Homes, based in Red Deer, AB, and has been a supporter of A Better World since 1999. In 2006, Gord began volunteering his own time and energy to travel to project sites throughout Eastern Africa, overseeing the impact which his support has fostered. Gord is passionate about development and he has frequently demonstrated his dedication to seeing impoverished communities improve their standard of living. He has sponsored an immense number of A Better World projects and his generosity has and continues to shape the lives of thousands of people around the world. A Better World is grateful to Gord and his wife Kate for the support they have shown for more than twenty years.

Scott Sankey

Treasurer, Board of Directors
Rwanda Project Manager

Scott has spent the last 20 years working in the oil and gas industry in countries and cultures across the globe, leading teams and influencing others. He is a founding member of the Saruk Centre for Leadership Development. He is a volunteer project manager for Rwanda and has also funded ABW projects and traveled to visit projects in Kenya and Rwanda. He spends his time in Panama and Calgary. Born and raised in Alberta, Scott is passionate about helping others in need.

Warren Schnoor

Member, Board of Directors
Kenya Project Manager

Warren joined A Better World in 2013 and travels to Kenya regularly to manage projects. Warren and his wife Sara Jane are dedicated and long-time supporters of ABW. They have owned Co-operators Insurance Agency in Lacombe, AB since 2006.

Our Staff

Carl Hahn

Carl Hahn

General Manager

Carl first travelled with A Better World to Kenya as a reporter in 2014, and has volunteered in numerous roles since then, as a project manager in the Maasai Mara region and on marketing and communications projects back in Canada. Now he manages project files and funds from the home office in Lacombe.