NL Young Humanitarian

Lynelle CantwellLynelle Cantwell

Lynelle Cantwell from Torbay has become a voice for her generation and a powerful advocate against cyberbullying. At the age of 17, Cantwell, along with a group of her high school peers, was targeted by online bullying. She chose to refocus that conversation to one of compassion and reached out to the bullies. That online exchange went viral, making international headlines and producing an outpouring of support for Cantwell besieged with positive messages from around the globe. Cantwell soon found herself on a life changing trajectory to becoming a sought-after motivational speaker, a youth advocate for the Canadian Red Cross’s annual Pink Day as well as a youth ambassador for Telus in partnership with We Day, the largest series of youth education and empowerment events in North America.

Now 20, Cantwell has spoken to tens of thousands of youth about bullying and body shaming across the country. She was recently featured in the documentary Rising Above: Stories of Courage and Hope which was shown to students in select Cineplex theatres across Canada last year.

In addition to her speaking engagements, Cantwell volunteers with Ronald McDonald House Charities Canada, The Gathering Place St. John’s, and is a junior leader with St. Mark’s CLB Company. She was recently nominated for a YWCA Young Women of Distinction Award, which recognizes the leadership of women who contribute to the development and well-being of other women and to the overall improvement of the community. She has also been featured in numerous articles worldwide, including CBC news, The Huffington Post, The Globe & Mail, Chatelaine, The Star, BuzzFeed, The Canadian Press, and The Independent in the United Kingdom.

Cantwell dreams of sharing her story of overcoming cyberbullying as far as she can. She is currently working toward her goal of becoming a paramedic.