University of the Fraser Valley

50 Remarkable Alumni: Matt Loewen brings his lifelong passion for service back home 

50 Remarkable Alumni: Matt Loewen brings his lifelong passion for service back home 

What a difference a decade can make. 

 10 short years ago, Matt Loewen was in Botswana, Africa with an organization called Kings Active Foundation, a group that leverages sports to enrich the lives of young people, while at the same time helping them to find and fulfill their potential. 

Today, Loewen, who was named one of UFV’s Top 40 Alumni in 2014, is still following his passion for social issues, but he’s doing it much closer to home.  

Loewen, who attended UFV from 1998 to 2002, earning a Bachelor of Business Administration degree, returned to the eastern Fraser Valley in 2017. He is now regional director for Cyrus Centre, an organization based in Abbotsford and Chilliwack that provides support and services to youth in need. 

Loewen was in Botswana for 12 years, working in the Eastern and Southern Africa region. When he joined Kings Active Foundation, he was one of two full-time employees. By the time he departed, it had grown into a nationally recognized organization. As he left the role of Head of International Development, he turned over the reins of the organization to a local leader who he had trained; he says he felt good making the handoff and was happy to return to BC with partner Fify and their two children. 

Loewen tried a sales job when he first came back but didn’t find it fulfilling. His desire to make a difference in the world around him was instilled into him growing up and reinforced by his faith, and his African experience, and he felt pulled in that direction.  

“I grew up in a family where service locally and internationally was a priority,” he says. “I like to be connected to people and I’m motivated by big challenges like food insecurity, youth homelessness, and the toxic drug crisis. 

“I get fired up to get to work and help people. It’s part of my DNA.” 

Loewen credits his UFV experience in helping him find that path. Near the end of his Business Administration degree, he took an economics course and didn’t care for it. But after an eye-opening summer trip to Tibet, he came back with renewed determination to finish.  

Looking back on his campus days, Loewen says it’s a lot easier to pivot and try new things when you’re in university, and students shouldn’t hesitate to find what they’re truly passionate about. 

“You may be two or three years into a program and feel it’s not right for you, but you might be scared to try something else because you’ve invested so much time into it,” Loewen says. “Try everything when you’re still young because that is the best time to figure out what you really love to do.” 


 More than 50,000 people have graduated from UFV since 1974. Over the next year, we’ll be introducing you to 50 remarkable alumni.