Below are the biographies and photos of our Women Deliver 2019 Bursary Recipients!
Amy is Métis of Mi’kmaq descent. She originally belonged to the Qalipu First Nations Band in Newfoundland, but has lived in K’jipuktuk, Mi’kma’ki (AKA Halifax, Nova Scotia), all of her life. She is the Communications Coordinator at YWCA Halifax, (an organization that serves the women of Nova Scotia and strives for gender equality). She is a Master of Communications student at Mount Saint Vincent University, where she is researching the (Mis)Representation of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women (MMIW) in the News Media. Amy is hopeful to one day live in a world where women are treated equally, and that her Indigenous sisters will no longer face post-Colonial violence.
Andrea is a lawyer, educator, and feminist advocate. She is proud to be representing The Period Purse (TPP) as one its board members at the 2019 Women Deliver conference. The Period Purse is a grassroots non-profit organization that strives to achieve menstrual equity by providing marginalized menstruators – including women and trans men – with access to free menstrual products, and by reducing the stigma surrounding periods through public education and advocacy.
Andrea balances her TPP volunteer work with her day job is as a pay equity specialist for the Ontario Nurses’ Association, where she advocates for the pay equity rights of nurses across the province. Prior to that, she had the opportunity to work on a leading human rights claim brought by Ontario’s 800+ midwives on the basis of gender discrimination in compensation. Andrea has strong interests in labour and employment law, international and domestic human rights law, and women’s rights issues. She has worked with a range of feminist legal organizations to assist survivors of gender based violence with family, criminal, and immigration law matters. Andrea obtained her Juris Doctor from Osgoode Hall Law School and also holds a Bachelor of Education and an Honours Bachelor of Arts (sociology/psychology) from the University of Toronto.
Ashley Hall, Community Outreach worker with Crossroads for Women (Moncton, NB), is passionate about empowering survivors of violence. Her role is to provide resources, counselling, and support. It’s also to advocate with and for the women she accompanies and the community at large. She really enjoys offering workshops to schools, universities, colleges and service providers on a variety of topics: Healthy relationships, Consent, Secondary wounding, Welcoming a disclosure, Violence toward immigrant women, etc. She loves offering volunteer training for the Sexual Assault Centre and sharing her knowledge and experience with other passionate ambassadors of a consent culture in her community.
Brittney Potvin is the Program Coordinator for the International Internships for Indigenous Youth Program (IIIY) with the Northern Council for Global Cooperation (NCGC) and Atlantic Council for International Cooperation (ACIC), based in Whitehorse, Yukon. Brittney holds a Master of Arts in International Studies, Governance and Conflict stream from Simon Fraser University and a Bachelor of Arts, Honours specializing in Human Rights and Law from Carleton University. Since 2011, Brittney has volunteered with non-profit organizations advancing social justice issues throughout Canada and overseas, including the Canadian Red Cross Department of International Operations in Ottawa; Inter-Council Network (ICN) in Vancouver; the UK Refugee Council in Leeds, UK and CUSO International in Managua, Nicaragua as part of the Global Affairs IYIP Program. Brittney is passionate about gender equality, human rights, transitional justice, and Latin America social and political issues.
Dillon Black, M.S.W. (they/them) is a gender-nonconforming feminist anti-violence advocate & LGBT2ISQ+ rights activist with a deep commitment to social justice, equity and community development through an intersectional and trauma-informed approach. For the past 7 years Dillon has been working with the Ottawa Coalition to End Violence Against Women (OCTEVAW), where they are currently coordinating a ground breaking project to improve institutional accountability in responses to gender-based violence by supporting communities across Canada to pilot Violence Against Women Advocate Case Review (VACR) in partnership with the Ottawa Rape Crisis Centre. VACR (also known as the ‘Philadelphia Model’) is an accountability model that promises to challenge gender bias in policing and systematically capture institutional barriers faced by survivors of sexual and gender-based violence.
Emily is a third-year student at Kwantlen Polytechnic University, studying towards her BBA in marketing management. She is a passionate feminist and actively involves herself in community outreach whenever possible. She also works in the communications department at the public sector not-for-profit organization, Fraser Northwest Division of Family Practice, in which she creates websites for local family doctors’ offices.
Emily recently returned from the Daughters of the Vote initiative in Ottawa, where she represented her riding of Langley-Aldergrove in the House of Commons. She is also an active member of the Canadian Council of Young Feminists and recently co-authored an article detailing her experience at parliament. Emily is passionate about community outreach and advocacy work and has been a member of the Cloverdale-Langley City Constituency youth council for three years. This youth council collaborates monthly on community volunteer initiatives such as tackling youth homelessness, environmental protection, adult and youth mental health and substance use, and many other issues that the council identifies as areas of concern.
Emily is also an active member of her university community and has served on committees for the Kwantlen Student Association for two years, including the social justice and equity committee. Emily studied in Scotland for the Spring semester of 2018 and returned with a newfound understanding of globalization and the unique issues that come with it. In her future career, Emily would like to work for –or operate– a company that aims to make the world a better place. Whether this company promotes gender equality on a global scale, reverses environmental destruction, or improves quality of life through healthcare, she is dedicated to using her time in this world to leave it in better condition than its current state.
My name is Faria Khan and I was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta. Having obtained a Bachelors of Sciences in biology and then completing my Masters of Public Health with a specializing in global health and diplomacy, I have received academic and professional exposure to sexual health, health promotion, and gender related topics. With gender being a major social determinant of health, I have become passionate about health and wellness especially for promoting equity among marginalized populations. Volunteering is also a huge passion of mine, I have been involved in teaching English to refugee women, promoting careers to young girls in sciences and engineering, as well as volunteering for many other small non-for-profit organizations focused on human rights attainment.
Gabrielle Jacob is an undergraduate student at the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) where she is pursuing a joint major in Political Science and Global and International Studies and a minor in Philosophy. Between 2018 and 2019 Gabrielle completed a one-year term as an Undergraduate Student Senate Representative where she advocated for student interests and the university’s longevity. UNBC’s Senate monitors and adjudicates all matters pertaining to academics at the university. Gabrielle was selected to attend the Canadian International Model United Nations Conference in Ottawa, Ontario in 2019. At this event Gabrielle defended international cooperation, territorial sovereignty, and humanitarian rights via a simulation of an International Court of Justice case.
Between June and August 2018 Gabrielle interned at Alliance for Finance Monitoring (ACFIM) in Kampala, Uganda. ACFIM monitors campaign financing to examine the government’s influence in electoral outcomes. Interning at ACFIM developed and broadened an understanding of how civil society organizations encourage democratization and subsequently gender equality throughout East Africa.
Gabrielle is thrilled to attend the Women Deliver Conference and contribute to Women Deliver 2019 Mobilization Canada’s efforts to augment gender equity across Canada via international and domestic leadership initiatives. Women Deliver 2019 provides an outstanding opportunity to develop innovative solutions that promote international cooperation and ultimately foster gender equity.
Team Lead & Community Therapist with YWCA Moncton has faced multiple barriers and challenges as a youth, teen mom, and someone with lived experience with addiction and homelessness. Through her many challenges and trauma, Jenn has been a voice for many who continue to face barriers, specifically for women and individuals who work in the sex trade. After multiple shut doors and the belief that “she would never be able to do it”;, Jenn has graduated from Athabasca University with her Masters in Psychology Counselling. Jenn has completed a manuscript on the Multiple Challenges faced by Sex Workers & Housing First Approach. Jenn has intensive experience within the community providing counselling and support to women who are homeless, struggle with addiction, trauma, and other mental health concerns. Jenn has been leading a housing first program for individuals involved in the sex trade for the past 3 years. Jenn chairs the Sex Workers Action Group (SWAG) in Moncton, NB which has recently opened the doors to a connection center for those active in sex work and continues to be a voice at the table for women. From a trauma-informed perspective, Jenn is passionate about supporting and empowering others, instilling hope, meeting individuals where they are at, and walking the journey with the individuals she has the privilege to meet.
Jubanti D. Toppo
Jubanti D. Toppo works with the Antigonish Women’s Resource Centre & Sexual Assault Service Association in the role of Immigrant Support Program Coordinator where she assists women and girls from different cultural and ethnic backgrounds through various settlement and integration programs.
She helps women move upstream in achieving their goals and aspirations through one-on-one counselling, advocacy, referrals, and accompaniment to services. She also facilitates workshops and meetings to teach inter-cultural competencies, family law in Canada, rights of immigrants and refugees, Nova Scotia Child welfare system and the like. Recently, Ms. Toppo was invited by the Department of Women and Gender Equality as a Canadian Delegate to the 63rd United Nations Commission on the Status of Women in New York.
Ms. Toppo has extensive experience working with people from different cultural backgrounds as well as urban/rural development. She is currently the Co-Chair of the Antigonish Community Health Board, Chair of Antigonish/ Guysborough Multicultural Support group, Chair of the Antigonish Town and County Mental Health Family Support Group, and sits on the Advisory Committee of the Housing First with the “A Roof Over your Head Project” which addresses issues of homelessness and poverty. She is a Registered Social Worker with the Nova Scotia College of Social Workers. Ms. Toppo lives in Antigonish, Nova Scotia, is interested in reading, gardening and travelling.
After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Recreation Management and Community Development from the University of Manitoba; Karina embarked on a career that kept her close to her love of sport and working with children and youth. Karina recognized the need for empowering youth reached beyond the scope of her daytime position as Community Programming Coordinator for Youth within River East Transcona School Division in Winnipeg, and created Rising Strong; a movement to empower and build self-esteem and confidence within youth and young adults. Her goal is to continue to give youth the positive influences and tools needed to unleash their full potential to become future successors in our communities. Rising Strong covers a variety of topics, from body image and media literacy, to gender equality, goal setting and all around person development. Rising Strong also hosts fundraising events for International Day of the Girl and International Women’s Day and is active in her community promoting gender equality initiatives.
Mai Ngo is a reproductive and health rights advocate with a passion for intersectional feminism. She brings knowledge in intersectional gender-based approaches in international and community development. Her expertise is working with women who are from vulnerable communities such as street-based sex workers in Bangladesh, street-involved women in Vietnam and newcomer and single mothers in Canada. Mai holds a M.A. degree in Comparative and International Development Education from the University of Toronto. She has co-authored several publications, including Diverse Voices: Tools and Practices to Support All Women (2018) and Advancing Equity and Inclusion: A Guide for Municipalities (2015). She is the host and producer of The Birth Talks, a podcast about birth conversations with a feminist twist.
As part of her academic career, as well as her personal and professional life, Mélissa seizes multiple opportunities to advocate for social justice and the promotion of respect for human rights. Candidate for the Master of Arts in Criminology at the University of Ottawa, she wants to produce, through her thesis, knowledge about the various impacts and deprivations faced by mothers whose adult child is struggling with the Canadian justice system. She is deeply committed to defending the rights and improving the living conditions of women. She has worked for almost five years as a feminist activist advocate at Maison Unis-Vers-Femmes, a resource for help and shelter for women victims of domestic violence and their children. She is currently working as a Project, Communications and Development Officer at the Assembly of Regional Intervention Women’s Groups (AGIR Outaouais), a regional feminist consultative body. She is also involved in CALAS Outaouais as an emergency accompaniment worker, a service for survivors of sexual assault.
Mishma Mukith (she/her) is a second generation Canadian, writer, speaker, and citizen of the world hailing from Edmonton, Alberta. With an affinity towards social justice and a passion for sustainable community development, she has co-founded a non-profit organization within her city called “Converse and Cook”, which aims to build community by addressing both the practical and social elements of food. Mishma believes in the power of conversation and uses story-telling in her own mediums to address gender politics and the lingering effects of living in a colonialized society. She is currently serving as an elected board member on the City of Edmonton’s civic advisory board where she continues to advocate and amplify the voices of marginalized populations.
I am a first year graduate student with the Department of International Development Studies at Dalhousie University, in Halifax, Nova Scotia. My thesis will focus on the gendered reality of working in international development organizations in Uganda that are funded by the Government of Canada under the Feminist International Assistance Policy. I will be conducting field research in Kampala this coming summer and really look forward to capturing the experiences of the diversity of women who work to deliver gender equality programs. I have previously worked as a Policy Analyst at Global Affairs Canada, contributing towards research and analyses related to the feminist and rights-based approaches to development. In my hometown of Ottawa, I spent 4 years volunteering with the local United Nations Association in Canada (UNAC) Branch, where I took pride in working to educate the community on world issues and their role in them. When I am not busy with my studies, work or volunteering, I enjoy travelling, being active, discussing feminist issues with my friends over a good cup of coffee, and hanging out with my dog, Bella. I am passionate about gender equality and finding the root causes of global inequalities.
Rosemary Ganley of Peterborough is a lifelong feminist activist and writer, who attended the Fourth UN Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995. Now 24 years, later she is excited to attend and write about the global Women Deliver meeting in Vancouver, Canada. She lived for six years in Jamaica and Tanzania, and co-founded the development agency “Jamaican Self Help” in 1980. She has published a book on this experience: “Jamaica Journal: The Story of a Grassroots Canadian Aid Organization”. Rosemary gave the Margaret Laurence Lecture at Trent University in 2011, and now writes a weekly column for the Peterborough Examiner. She has been inducted in to the
Peterborough Pathway of Fame and in 2018, received the YMCA Peace Prize. She was assistant editor of the independent newspaper Catholic New Times in Toronto, 2001-2006. Her writing has appeared in the Globe and Mail, the Toronto STAR, the Peterborough Examiner, The Green Teacher and Conscience magazine. In 2018 she was invited by Prime Minister Trudeau to sit on the 19- person Gender Equality Advisory Council for the G7 meetings in June in Quebec, where she met with G7 leaders.
Sheryl Evans Price
My name is Sheryl Evans-Price. I live in Northern Ontario. I am a municipally elected Trustee for the Algoma District School Board and am serving my second term representing my community. I serve as a Board Director for the Algoma Region at the Ontario Public School Board Association and as North Eastern Ontario Boards representative and Chair of the Policy Development Team. I have an 18 year background in healthcare. I am also currently enrolled full-time at Algoma University completing my degree in Community Development. I have had many opportunities through organizations to further the movement on gender equality. I have campaigned to make women more visible in elected seats in government at all levels. I am also driving a campaign that holds media accountable to the language and discourse that they use when covering stories about sexual violence. I am an active participant with Women’s March Canada Movements, PoliticsNow, and MMIWG which are all strong voices for gender equality and equity. I believe that voice matters, and that representative government is key to equality. I am an ally, an advocate, a changemaker, and a strong voice in my community. Most of all, I am the proud mother of two incredible children that I am raising to be kind and caring individuals who live each day to the fullest and love with all their hearts.
Reina is from Lac Seul First Nation, an Ojibway community located in Treaty #3 (Northwestern Ontario). Reina has a diverse youth leadership that stems from being the former Lac Seul Youth Chief. She developed and expanded her youth advocacy through Feathers of Hope, a First Nations youth initiative within the former Ontario Child Advocate’s office. Jumping from a provincial to national platform, Reina was a Youth Ambassador for the first ‘Girls Belong Here’ campaign by Plan International Canada. In October 2016, she shadowed Carolyn Bennett, the former Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs, for a day and created a new step for First Nations youth. She is now on the Plan International Canada: Youth Advisory Council. At a global level, Reina was on board the Canadian Partnership for Women’s and Children’s Health (CanWaCH): Conference Youth Council. At the May 2017 Global Health Conference, Reina advocated for Indigenous Mental Health on the topic of First Nations Youth Suicides. This has led her to join the Women Deliver Mobilization Consortium with CanWaCH. Reina is proud and in disbelief that she accomplished everything she set her mind to before she turned 20 years old. She hopes to inspire many other Indigenous youth to accomplish their dreams too.
Rachel Richard is from Moncton, NB. She pursued her interests in international relations and women’s studies by obtaining a bachelor’s degree, majoring in political science at the Université de Moncton. She continued her studies at University of King’s College where she received a post-baccalaureate one-year Bachelor of Journalism. Rachel is currently employed as the Public Engagement at the New Brunswick Coalition for Pay Equity and she serves on the board of the Common Front for Social Justice and the Frye Festival.
As a self-proclaimed proud African Feminist, I have always been an advocate for women, especially African women. African women have allowed me to find my voice, they have given me the strength to live authentically and they have given me the power to be unapologetic about who I am and where I come from. I believe an empowered girl will in turn become a powerful woman, which is why I have made it my mission to advocate for, and champion female entrepreneurs in Gambia through my start-up social enterprise called Gambian Fempreneurs. An organization dedicated to provide our women with the visibility and start-up capital they need when embarking on their entrepreneurial journey.
Hello my name is Francess Amara. I’m originally from Sierra Leone, West Africa and currently live in Winnipeg, Manitoba. I studied Women’s and Gender Studies and Political Studies from the university of Manitoba. I am passionate about education, immigrants integration, gender equality, and the empowerment of women and girls. I identify as a grassroots organizer; working with grassroots based programs and organizations with diverse individuals and developing policies to ensure that both genders have equal access to contribute and participate in our social, cultural, political, and economic development not only in our individual communities but the society as a whole.
Tyler is a recent graduate from the University of Winnipeg with a 4-year Bachelor of Arts degree in Rhetoric, Writing, and Communications (April, 2018) and the most recent recipient of the Manitoba LGBT Chamber of Commerce – Student of the Year Award (November, 2018). He intends to pursue law school, as a means to enable and facilitate advocacy efforts as a tool to promote global human rights.
As an active member of his community, Tyler is an ally and advocate for ALL human rights. In his recent advocacy work for women’s rights, he attended the United Nations CSW62 and CSW63 where he assisted in the handling of social media materials and volunteered as a rapporteur for various (national and international) NGO’s. As a member of the International Institute for Women’s Rights, and Women 4 Women of South Sudan (W4W), he has experience assisting in the ushering, facilitating and implementation of public engagements. His experience assisting in the drafting process of financial proposals for W4W of South Sudan was in an effort to build health resource centres in developing African nations that aimed to empower young women and girls to be leaders in their communities.
Lydia is a community-builder, marketer, pilot, glider flight instructor, leader and mentor, published writer and researcher, innovator, advocate, and adventure-seeker.
Passionate about creating a positive impact socially and economically through advocacy and education, Lydia is currently the Training & Communications Manager at the Black Business Initiative (BBI) – a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering Black entrepreneurs by addressing the inherent barriers that are faced when starting or operating a business. A believer in fostering motivated and diverse leaders, Lydia is also a Director on the Fusion Halifax Board, has three academic publications, was named Enactus Canada’s HSBC Woman Leader of Tomorrow (Atlantic) in 2017, and in 2018 was the first Woman of Color in Atlantic Canada to hold the leadership role of “Flight Commander” at the Debert Cadet Flying Training Centre.
Having most work experiences in male-dominated spaces, Lydia is a champion for diversity, gender equity, and inclusion of all identities and she is working towards creating equal opportunities through her career and voluntary work.
Sophie Mederi is a birth attendant and a feminist activist who has been involved for many years in the issues of perinatality and sexual violence. Her studies in sociology and health allow her to analyze the health and rights of women. For the past three years, she has been a project officer for Global Respectful Access Week (SMAR) and works to increase media and public awareness on the issue of obstetric violence. She has been co-coordinator at RNR since the fall of 2018.
Amy Carver is an entrepreneur and healthcare professional in Prince Edward Island. She is passionate about building community with other women and marginalized groups to learn more about and improve upon modern feminism, social justice and politics. Being naturally empathic led Amy to the healthcare industry and keeps her engaged in volunteer work both professionally as a councillor for the CMTPEI and personally with Ronald McDonald House Charities. Amy’s goals include advocating for, promoting, encouraging and fostering women’s wellness, political engagement and social responsibility.
Esther is a trauma counsellor and a guest lecturer on gender based violence, diversity, inclusion and human rights issues. Her work is grounded in an integrated anti-racist/anti-oppression and feminist analysis, a holistic approach in which a person’s experience and realities of life are not fragmented and divided. Esther has been working in the human service field for over 30 years. She is a great advocate on issues of violence against women, youth and children. As the executive director of WMRCC of Durham, she has developed numerous innovative programs and services to support the population the organization serves. She is highly committed to ensuring that women, youth and children receive effective and efficient services; as well as maintaining a work environment that is free of any form of oppression.
Fatima Beydoun is entering her third year at Dalhousie University on the un-ceded Mi’kmaq territory of Halifax (K’jipuktuk), Nova Scotia, where she also hails from. She is currently pursuing a double major in Environment, Sustainability and Society and International Development Studies with a minor in French. Fatima’s passions include environmental justice and looking at the impacts of climate change through a gender-based analysis, and is currently advocating for a Green New Deal in Canada. Recently, she was a 2019 Daughters of the Vote delegate representing the Halifax riding where she spoke in the House of Commons about Migrant justice, another interest of hers. Fatima furthers her skills and passion for human rights, equity, and justice in the international scope through her involvement with Amnesty International, as the president of her university’s society and the only Maritimer on the National Youth Action and Advisory Committee for the Canadian chapter. Finally, Fatima is particularly interested in the role that women can play in peace and conflict resolution and hopes to pursue that in the future.
I am a second year Bachelor of Arts student at the University of MacEwan with a focus in Political Science. My interests in sustainability and diplomacy roots from my motivation to create meaningful change and curiosity of how I can help those in most need. I am a strong believer in inspiring the now generation and improving the lives of others within our local and global community. Whether I’m volunteering internally or externally the campus, I am always searching for ways to leave a positive impact and seek opportunities that will help blossom leaders. On my spare time, I love to go for a run and read.
Yash Pillay holds a PhD in Medical Biochemistry. Her interests pertain to disease manifestation and counteractive methods, public health, health equity and education. She has worked in research, tertiary education, the NGO sector and is an advocate for inclusive global health policy. She has experience with youth friendly health services at national level as well as community initiatives aimed at improving basic health and education. More recently she has been involved as a grant writer with Canadian poverty relief charity ONE! International which aims to use education, skills development and employment as means of empowerment in small slums of Mumbai.
Skaydu.û yu xhut duwasakh, Autum Jules dlet ka xanaxh. (My Tlingit name is Skaydu.û and my English name is Autum Jules.) Daxhlawedi I ya xhut. (I belong to the eagle clan.) I am from the Teslin Tlingit Council First Nations in the Yukon Territory. My entire life I was lucky enough to grow up in the small community of Teslin Yukon living off the land and water, harvesting berries and medicines, subsistence hunting and fishing on my first nations traditional territory. I was taught from my elders at a very young age how important environmental protection, equality and respect is to the prosperity of all living things on this earth. The quote that helps guide me on my journey in this work is, “Who speaks for the ones who can’t speak for themselves.”
Habiba Cooper Diallo
Habiba Cooper Diallo is an award-winning writer, public speaker and women’s health advocate. She is the founder of the non-profit, the Women’s Health Organization International that works to end obstetric fistula, a devastating maternal health condition that is common in Africa and Asia. Diallo was one of Canada’s Top 20 Under 20 leaders in 2013 and an American Express-Ashoka Emerging Innovator in 2014. She was one of 6 finalists in the 2018 London Book Fair Pitch Competition and was “highly commended” for the Manchester Fiction Prize. Most recently, Diallo was selected to be a Young Director as part of the Girls on Boards initiative. You can follow her work on her blog: habibacooperdiallo.com or find her on social media, Twitter: @haalabeeba
Hirut Melaku Eyob
Hirut Melaku , B.A., IBCLC, a consultant in pregnancy and infant feeding with a focus on racial equity, sexual violence and LGBTQ2 issues. She is a birth companion and reproductive justice advocate who applies early intervention strategies and preventative care models into her work using an anti-oppression framework.
The investigative and reporting work that she has done in the last 20 years has been used by many, including the United Nations, to determine humanitarian aid, and by local players to develop initiatives, programs, and interventions in the area of mental health.
She contributes to repairing the world as a healer, nurturer, and as a speaker of truth. Hirut credits her ancestors, unique background and intersectional identities (Ethiopian-Jew, queer, mother of a gifted child with [dis]abilities, Montréalaise) for keeping her grounded and connected.
She runs her own private practice (www.hirut.org) and is a co-founder of the Third Eye Collective, a survivor-led organization for Black women who have experienced gendered violence. (www.thirdeyemontreal.com). She loves travelling- having lived, studied and worked in Africa, North America, and the Middle East.
Katie Davey self identifies as a policy enthusiast, inclusive policy advocate, and substantive equality seeker. Feeling like the conversation around inclusive and diverse decision making was lacking on the East Coast, she created Femme Wonk – a policy and current affairs podcast that seeks to discuss both innovative and traditional public policy through a gender and inclusion lens.
Katie has served as Director of Policy and Stakeholder Relation at the Office of the Official Opposition in New Brunswick, Senior Advisor for Policy and Stakeholder Engagement in the New Brunswick Premier’s Office, and President of the University of New Brunswick Student Union.
Katie acted as chief adviser to the premier and chief of staff in relation to the premier’s ministerial responsibilities as minister responsible for women’s equality. She championed a number of policies that propelled New Brunswick to first in the country on important issues of equality.
Katie currently operates KDC which supports organizations to achieve their social mission through inclusive decision making, advocacy, government relations, and public dialogue. She is also a member of the Youth Working Group on Gender Equality for the Government of Canada.
Jamileh Naso is a student at the University of Winnipeg pursing a B.A.in Political Science and Human Rights. Based out of Winnipeg, Manitoba she has been working as a Spokesperson and Activist since 2014, to raise awareness about the ongoing genocide of the Yazidi people, through Operation Ezra, a project dedicated to privately sponsoring and resettling Yazidi refugees to Winnipeg. The continuous lobbying efforts of Operation Ezra were key to the Canadian government initiating a program to bring 1200 of the most vulnerable Yazidi women and children in Iraq to Canada.
Jamileh is passionate about Refugee and Immigration policy, Gender Equality and International Affairs. She is constantly looking for the links between International and Human Rights laws and ways we can make certain of their execution at the grassroots level. She has taken an active role in organizations such as, The Canadian Council of Young Feminists, Welcome Place, and N.E.E.D.S. to do just that. Because of her active role in the community she was asked to be part of a panel on Canadas’ Social Protection Systems, at the 63rd Commission on the Status of Women, at the United Nations in New York.
Lexie Obey is a Plains Cree-Metis women, youth care worker and a recent graduate of the Human Justice program at the University of Regina. Her life and work experience has cultivated a passion for understanding and working against inequality and injustices within her community. She is a self-proclaimed lifelong learner, who hopes to pursue future studies in the environmental justice sector.
Grace Van Mil
Grace has over a decade of experience working in international and community development, ranging from locally based community projects to international NGOs operating around the world. Whether within communities here in Canada or as part of development projects in the Global South, Grace’s passion for social justice has informed her life and work. A lifelong learner, Grace enjoys facilitating learning opportunities for others and exploring innovative ideas for development practice.
Maisyn Sock is a nineteen year old Mi’kmaw woman. She comes from both of the communities of Eskasoni, NS and Elsipogtog, NB. This upcoming fall, Maisyn will be attending Renaissance College at the University of New Brunswick, taking her bachelor of philosophy in interdisciplinary leadership studies. Maisyn advocates for the recognition of Mi’kmaq youth across Mi’kma’ki. With a lot of extended family scattered across the Atlantic Canada, it gives her a deeper connection with her Mi’kmaq identity because Mi’kmaq people are not from one place but all over Eastern Canada. Some of Maisyn’s accomplishments include, The Vimy Pilgrimage Award, Noel Doucette Leadership Award, RBC InBusiness National Award and, Lieutenant Governor Respectful Citizen Award. Her past experiences vary from, attending the national youth ambassador conference, representing Mi’kmaw Youth at the Mi’kmaw Reconciliation and Research Conference, participating in the International Internship for Indigenous Youth Program where she was placed in Nandi County, Kenya. She hopes to utilize her experiences to inspire Mi’kmaw youth to take leaps of faith and explore what this world has to offer. She is most passionate about her culture and her people.
Micaela Crighton is an activist, athlete, improviser, and outdoor enthusiast. She is a recent graduate of the University of Winnipeg with a Bachelor of Arts in Human Rights and Theatre and Film. She is very excited to have been selected by the Women Deliver 2019 Mobilization Canada Secretariat to be able to attend Women Deliver this June.
Growing up Micaela would often be found reading any books she could on whatever topic had piqued her interest that month. She was always interested in history and current affairs and how the two intersected. Dinner table conversations were often debating about current affairs and as the youngest of five daughters she learnt early on to bring research to fact check her dinner table statements. This led her to study at the Global College at the University of Winnipeg. Through the College, she became connected to the Institute for International Women’s Rights – Manitoba (IIWR-MB), where she became a member. In 2017 she was elected to the board in the position of Co-Chair of Advocacy. In this position, Micaela directs the board on advocacy decisions and organizes events and actions both in her community as well as internationally.
Marie-Hélène Lajoie is passionate about issues of gender equality and international solidarity. She holds a master’s degree in political science and feminist studies and is particularly interested in Latin American women’s movements. She has accumulated several experiences in Latin America on the theme of equality between women and men, including training young people and strengthening the capacity of organizations. She currently works at the Carrefour international solidarity NGO in Sherbrooke, where she is an international project and internship officer for young people.
Afnan is a public health professional, passionate about the health, rights, and wellbeing of women and girls, which stems from her passion for health equity, both locally and globally. Her curiosity, love for learning, sense of social justice, and appreciation for creativity has led her to work at grassroots and community levels on issues such as refugee health, inner city women’s health, advocacy on labour policy and decent working conditions, as well as on an international level with the World Health Organization on social and environmental determinants of health, among many other pursuits and research projects. Afnan recently attained her Master of Public Health degree from the University of Toronto, and holds a Bachelor of Science in Health Studies, with a Minor in Anthropology from the University of Waterloo.
My journey into the female health arena was uniquely, and rather comically, unconventional and started several years ago in 2015. Coming from a background as a performer, with experience in marketing and IT work, I was entirely unprepared for what was in store for me when I agreed to help Women’s Global Health Innovations founder and CEO, Leisa Hirtz, take her first product the bfree cup.®, an antibacterial menstrual cup from an idea into a reality.
I offered whatever help I could on a volunteer basis, helping set up and moderate email accounts, setting up a basic landing page, and lending an ear to Leisa when she needed a complete outsider’s perspective. Doing this work transformed me, however, and I no longer wanted to sit on the sidelines as the war for our collective soul was being waged on the battlefront of public awareness of menstruation. I decided to commit to the cause, and thrust myself into the heart of it, becoming in the process an unintentional mansplainer of all things period related. This is still something I struggle with, as I want to share all the absolutely unbelievable information I have learned doing market research and studying the impact assessments and reports of on the topic of menstrual cups, and period poverty in general. As Co-creative Director of WGHI, I am lucky to get the chance to develop my passion for advocacy for women’s health. I hope to use the information and language I learn at the Women Deliver 2019 Conference to elevate my knowledge of all things surrounding female empowerment to the place where I can truly feel that I am being informative without seeming boastful.
Jillian Kilfoil is Executive Director of Women’s Network PEI (WNPEI). WNPEI is a feminist organization with a provincial mandate and a 35-year history of supporting Island women. Jillian is originally from western Prince Edward Island. She has an undergraduate degree in political science and women’s studies and a certificate in Adult Education from St. FX. She is a facilitator, feminist, and community advocate. Jillian has previously worked with Katimavik, Girls Action Foundation and Apathy is Boring. She has lived and worked across the country in various locations and has most recently returned to PEI from Montreal. Jillian has an expertise in experiential learning programs, youth civic engagement, and gender issues. Jillian is passionate about creating equity in society and spends a lot of time thinking about the intersections of power and privilege and how we can unlearn behaviours and ways of thinking that lead to exclusion, stigma and violence. Jillian is currently a member of PEI’s Regional Economic Advisory Council, is part of Status of Women Canada’s Gender Equality Network and recently represented PEI as part of the Canadian NGO delegation at the UN Commission on the Status of Women.
Sydney Piggott (she/her) is a dynamic, results-oriented project manager and researcher with over five years of professional experience in international development, corporate social responsibility, gender advocacy and youth empowerment. She is the Manager of Programs and Projects at YWCA Canada where she is in charge of national initiatives with a vision to see women and girls empowered in a safe and equitable society. Sydney is also on the board of directors of Springtide Resources, a member of Gender Equality Network Canada and a contributor at B*tchcoin News – a financial literacy blog and newsletter for young women professionals in Canada.
Sydney is a recent graduate of the Master of Global Affairs program at the University of Toronto – Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy where she co-founded the Intersectional Feminist Collective, was a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee scholar and a researcher for the Reach Project – an initiative that focuses on the delivery of development interventions to the world’s most vulnerable groups. She has international research experience in Ethiopia and South Africa. Sydney also holds a bachelor’s degree in International Development Studies from McGill University.
49-year-old Francisca Mandeya is a Canadian Resident living in Nunavut; who hails from Zimbabwe. Other than being a Civil Servant, Mandeya is a Transformational Speaker, Author, and Coach who is passionate about gender equality. Mandeya has made contributions in smashing patriarchy, promoting maternal health and young people’s leadership training. Her first solo book, “Mother Behold Thy Son” is scheduled for publication by 30 November 2019. Mandeya believes that mothers can tap into their power of love and teach sons to jettison toxic masculinity; to help attain gender equality.
Hi there! My name is Brianne Klingspon and I am from Sherwood Park, Alberta. I have been working with an organization called One! International Poverty Relief for the past 6 years, focusing our efforts on providing education to children in India. In 2015 I was able to spend a summer in Mumbai, India teaching at one of the schools and since then have continued to support the foundation through organization and fundraising supports based in Canada. Through this work I was connected to the Alberta Council for Global Cooperation and in 2016, was one of the chosen Top 30 Under 30 award recipients.
I am looking forward to attending Women Deliver 2019 as an opportunity to learn more about women’s rights on an international level and gain insight on how to approach cultural and domestic changes in a respectful and meaningful way. Thank you so much to everyone from One! International Poverty Relief, the Inter-Council Network and Women Deliver 2019 Mobilization Canada for the support and opportunities.
For 25 years Anita Mark has been a social justice advocate, consultant and facilitator with RESULTS Canada, www.results-resultats.ca, a global organization committed to ending the worst aspects of poverty in the world. Her background embraces teaching, business, dairy farming and currently, a nursery/landscaping business in Victoria, BC, where she resides.
She is an active leader in the promise that all women and children are safe and cherished, healthy, educated, prospering and living vital lives. For this work, in 2012 the British Columbia Lieutenant-Governor awarded her with the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Award for Contributions to Canada, and in 2018 A Lifetime Achievement Award from RESULTS Canada. She is engaging and happiest when connected with people in play and purpose. She is married with 4 children and 6 grandchildren.
I am a student of Wilfred Laurier University completed my 2nd year undergrad on Bio-archaeology and Physiology. I am strongly engaged with gender equality within my community.
Ariel is passionate about ending violence against women, fostering economic empowerment and promoting political representation for those most marginalized. Ariel has worked to promote gender equality for the past year and a half in her role as a member of the BC Council for International Cooperation’s (BCCIC) Board of Directors. This March, Ariel attended the UN’s sixty-third session of the Commission on the Status of Women as a BCCIC delegate. Previously, she attended the United Nations High-Level Political Forum as a BCCIC Youth Delegate, where she advocated for inclusive political representation of Canadian Youth and Indigenous Women.
She is currently employed as the Event Planner for the Communicable Disease and Population and Public Health Unit of the First Nations Health Authority. In this role, she manages the implementation of conferences and workshops that cover sexual health, tuberculosis, harm reduction, HIV, and immunizations with an Indigenous lens across the province. She promotes gender equity in her work as she strives to act with cultural humility.
Previously Ariel has worked in Mongolia and India where she supported the development of a women-owned and operated cashmere factory and a grassroots non-profit that worked with impoverished children. She graduated with a Bachelors of Commerce degree from the University of Victoria, and during her time there held multiple positions on the Board of Directors of the University of Victoria’s Student Society.
Nelly Bassily is an intersectional feminist, sexual rights, and anti-racism activist and media maker with over 12 years of experience in the non-profit sector. Born to Egyptian parents in Montreal, immigration, diaspora, and identity also inform her activism. She is currently Director of Youth Intiatives and International Relations at the DisAbled Women’s Network (DAWN Canada) and focuses her work on young women with disabilities and Deaf young women. Previously, she worked on the young feminist activism program at the Association for Women’s Rights in Development. She is currently learning American Sign Language and co-hosts a feminist radio show called Des sorcières commes les autres on CKUT 90.3 FM.
Aurora Hardy | Mbäw Chä́na
Aurora Hardy is a citizen of the Kwanlin Dün First Nation and of the Wolf Clan. She volunteers regularly in her community and is an active member of the Youth Advisory Committee to Council with the Kwanlin Dün First Nation and the Youth Advisory Committee with the Northern Council for Global Cooperation. Aurora is currently studying Business Administration and Indigenous Studies at the Mount Royal University in Calgary.
In 2016, Aurora and Teagyn Vallevand co-founded Youth for Lateral Kindness – a youth-led facilitation business based in Whitehorse aimed at reducing lateral violence in Indigenous communities. The team of Indigenous Youth Facilitators travel throughout the Yukon facilitating youth lateral kindness workshops and Blanket Exercises, speak out about important topics, and encourage reconciliation among Indigenous and Non-Indigenous people in the Yukon.
“Being a youth facilitator has forced me to break out of my comfort zone and has helped me to grow as a person. Through this work, I feel reconnected to my community and culture, met new people, gained phenomenal experiences, and become a happier and healthier person.”
Audrey Baril is from Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Lac, Quebec. Her passion for social justice and equality led her to advocate for and work in the field of women’s rights advocacy, particularly in dealing with women who are victims of domestic violence and who are struggling with community organizations in her region. . This path led her to international cooperation positions in the field of justice between women and men in Burkina Faso and Benin, where she was responsible for country programming in the sector. She is currently in charge of projects – Africa at the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean Center for International Solidarity, and coordinates projects focusing on empowerment and the well-being and sexual and reproductive health of young women in Burkina Faso and in Senegal.
Karin Tischler, founder of Emily’s Path.ca is a visibilizer and advocate for highly qualified professionals trying to return to paid work after a long period of absence. A returner herself with a Master’s degree in Economics from the University of Oxford and a professional research focus, Karin studied and interviewed best practice leaders across Europe and North America. Concluding that awareness raising is the first step to action, Karin has spread the word about this often invisible part of the workforce by being a guest on podcasts, talking to media, setting up events, communicating on social media and creating a support Facebook group. Karin is also actively learning about the future of work and how it pertains to returners such as job-sharing and flexible work. Karin is very appreciative about being a partial bursary recipient and thus being able to attend Women Deliver 2019. This will allow her to further raise awareness about this important part of the workforce as well as learn best practice approaches from more countries worldwide.
Miley Wee Kee Leong
Born in Malaysia, raised on unceded xʷməθkʷəy̓əm, Sḵwx̱wú7mesh, and səl̓ilwətaɁɬ homelands, Miley Leong is passionate about how people and spaces are organized. Her academic, professional, and volunteer work are informed by the intersections of her identity and their entanglements with systems of power. With her degree in Organizational Behaviour and Human Resource (OBHR) and Gender, Race, and Social Justice (GRSJ) at UBC, she is interested in re-imagining diversity and inclusion initiatives to center equity and anti-oppression. Passionate about dismantling the patriarchy, Miley currently sits on two Boards (CEWH and Good Night Out Vancouver) and is actively involved with organizations like, WAVAW Rape Crisis Centre and AMS Sexual Assault Support Centre at UBC.
Jane Hope is a writer, thinker and feminist. She is the marketing and communications manager for Lunapads, a social venture dedicated to sustainable menstruation, and the board president of Room magazine, Canada’s foremost feminist literary organization. She has studied at McGill and Simon Fraser University, and currently lives in East Van with Maggie, a cat of strong personality.
Amy Robichaud is the Executive Director of Dress for Success Vancouver; A community empowering women into the workforce by providing them with professional attire, career services, and skills development programs. It is this complete ensemble of career and leadership training,
thought leadership and advocacy, and interview coaching and suiting services that address the lived reality of women who are striving to enter and advance in the workforce while also addressing the systemic constraints to women’s economic empowerment.
With a decade of entrepreneurial and organization growth experience Amy helps non-profit organizations advance their ideas, revenue and diversity goals through policy and practice. and has worked for and with charitable organizations across North America. Before joining Dress for Success Vancouver, Amy owned a specialized Advancement Practice that used a diversity and inclusion lens to guide organizations with their fund development strategy and operations, and communications including persuasion campaign planning and management.
Amy is the former Director of Partnership & Engagement for Minerva BC, the cofounder of FundHer.ca, a speaker on mental health, intergeneration leadership, implicit bias, women in politics, leadership and civic engagement. She’s a regular and bilingual contributor to the CBC, and has also appeared on CPAC, and german broadcaster ZDF.
She is an Advisor and board member for Speech and Debate Canada, Chair of the National Liberal Women’s Commission and a board member of the Liberal Party of Canada’s National Board of Directors, and a member of the Banff Forum.
Amy and her husband, Glen, have lived all over Canada but now happily call Vancouver home along with their pets and overgrown library. Her passion for practical ways to harness the diversity dividend, create economic inclusion, opportunity and prosperity for all inform everything she does.
Lori Boland has spent the last 2 decades dedicating her career to the health and well-being of children and families. Lori holds a BA degree in Child & Youth Care from University of Victoria (1999) and a Master of Social Work degree from University of Victoria (2013). She has professional experience in schools, hospitals, nonprofits and Aboriginal settings. Since focusing her MSW research on the phenomenon of Hypersexualization of Youth, Lori has been involved in both grass-roots and systemic advocacy projects aimed at shifting culture to be more inclusive, equitable and safe for all people.