a.m./p.m. - Caleb Goodman, Vice-Chair of Rainbow Railroad

Featured in this week’s a.m./p.m. is Caleb Goodman, who, on top of his cool day job at Rethink (a creative agency), is also Vice-Chair of Rainbow Railroad, a charitable organization that helps LGBTQ+ people escape state-induced persecution and discrimination from their own countries.

As Caleb says in his interview with us, “[Identifying as] LGBTQ+ is still illegal in about 70 countries and punishable by death in nine.” Clearly, there’s still a lot of work to do, and Rainbow Railroad’s incredible mission is one that needs to be shared.

We’re lucky and honoured to get to know Caleb, one of the many people who champion equality for all. Learn about Caleb’s morning and nightly routine below!

Caleb Goodman (Photo and graphic design: Cat Walrond)

Caleb Goodman (Photo and graphic design: Cat Walrond)

Give us the low down on your morning routine. What do you do to ensure you’re ready to tackle the day ahead?

As a pretty serious morning person, 5-9 a.m. is my favourite part of the day (but I do turn into a pumpkin around 9:30 p.m.). I love having that window of time to myself before the rest of my day begins. My weekday routine goes like this: alarm at 5 a.m., deep snuggle with my dog Bowie, a splash of cold water on my face, downstairs for a glass of water and a few sips of coffee, meditation for 10-20 minutes (using Headspace), more coffee, personal journal (daily intentions, gratitude, acknowledgement), breakfast (plain yoghurt, berries, oats, rye toast, crunchy peanut butter, more coffee), CBC metro morning, Twitter headlines, off to the gym, office by 9 a.m.

Tell us about your first experience getting involved with Rainbow Railroad by way of organizing the fundraising event, The Freedom Party, back in 2014. What made you want to join them?

I was mid-morning routine when I heard the board chair of Rainbow Railroad speaking on CBC Metro Morning. I was horrified to hear about the state-sponsored violence towards LBGTQ+ people in Uganda. At the same time, I was also deeply moved to hear about the work of Rainbow Railroad and how they were making an immediate impact by helping move people to safety. That day I assembled a group of friends with the goal of throwing a fundraising event. Six years later the Freedom Party has continued to be an opportunity to connect with our supporters and help LBGTQ+ people move to safety.

If you were standing on a soapbox in front of a crowd of people, what would you want Canadians to know about the need for equal rights for LGBTQ+ communities around the world?

There have been huge advancements in LGBTQ+ right in Canada over the past few years. But being LGBTQ+ is still illegal in about 70 countries and punishable by death in nine. There is an opportunity for Canadians to demonstrate our global leadership in human rights by supporting some of the most vulnerable people around the world.

It should always feel good to come home, and we admire the work Rainbow Railroad has done to ensure individuals find comfort and support in their new home. How do you find comfort and support in your everyday life? Does sleep play a part in that?

My partner Ben is my biggest cheerleader. He’s the type of person who volunteers acknowledgement and support when I didn’t even know that I needed it. Thankfully we both go to bed early and love sleep!

How do you get ready for bedtime? What are some things you have to do before going to bed?

I make sure the coffee maker is set for the morning and I hop into bed. If my brain is racing or craving that iPhone dopamine hit, I reach for a book or sleep meditation. They both do the trick in less than 10 minutes.