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Meet Our Neighbour: Author Jennifer Sims

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Life + Learning

  • Author Jennifer Sims poses with her book
  • Author Jennifer Sims poses in front of a blue-grey home

Amy, Queen's Square | November 3, 2021

The past year and a half has been one of change, struggle, and even loss. But for local author, Jennifer Sims, it has also been a time of opportunity. In September of 2020 Jennifer took the plunge and published her poetry anthology: Haven: An Anthology of Love & Loss.

I interviewed Jennifer to learn more about her anthology, its ties to our community, and the other initiatives Jennifer is currently pursuing.

  1. What inspired you to write Haven: An Anthology of Love and Loss?

From a young age I was able to see the benefit of journaling and processing emotions by writing them down. Being an avid reader myself, one of my favourite genres has always been poetry. It was a helpful tool as a young adult, when I was growing up and in a tough time of my life. While much of the book was written in my teenage and young adult years, it was during the start of COVID, when I decided to actually create a published work. I spent many years not wanting to share this personal side of myself. The pandemic was a time I spent reflecting on what I had created.  It felt more natural to release it during a time when mental health issues are continuously on the rise, more so now than ever.

  1. What do you want people to take away from your book?

I really hope readers can resonate with my writing. My hope is to create inspiration in others to try writing for themselves. Or to express themselves through another form, whether art, dance etc. It's so important to begin talking about what's on our mind, in a safe space among trusted others. Or at least work on getting them out in another healthy form, to begin a healing process within ourselves.

  1. Your book is also closely connected to Cambridge community initiatives. Can you tell us a little about that?

This community has given me so much since I became a citizen of Cambridge only 5 years ago. I came as a small business owner in a brand new town not knowing anyone locally. I am forever grateful for being able to claim a space here and thrive. It made sense that I try to give back however I can.

While I continue to work with local avenues focusing on mental health, my future proceeds for this book are focused toward my new education initiative. The Jennifer Sims Scholarship Fund provides an annual grant to female students as a way to help with their College/University education studies.

More information can be found through Cambridge & North Dumfries Community Foundation below.

https://www.cndfoundation.org/scholarships/

Direct donations can also be made through Canada Helps here

https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/cambridge-north-dumfries-community-foundation/

  1. Aside from being an author, you are also a local entrepreneur. What can you tell us about your bookkeeping business?

I am very passionate about business owners and helping them understand their finances. Entrepreneurship is not for the faint at heart, there is tremendous courage in sticking through the ebbs and flows of a business. I love helping people become organized with their numbers so they can plan and grow their dreams. My firm provides bookkeeping, payroll and tax services. We specialize in startups, sole proprietors and small corporations. I am in the process of franchising as well and more information about us can be found at https://www.keepingbooks.ca/


The Meet Our Neighbour series is all about introducing you to local businesses, makers, and performers, as well as some additional resources from our collection.