Emma was born on unceded and unsurrendered Algonquin Anishnaabeg territory to a family that's deeply invested in the Canadian labour movement. She is passionate about climate and migrant justice, workers' rights, and anti-capitalist struggle. In 2013, while studying at Mount Allison University, Emma co-founded DivestMTA— a student movement calling for the university to pull its endowment fund out of the fossil fuel industry. She has continued to organize with the student divestment movement ever since, bringing the struggle for climate justice off-campus with sit-ins, marches, and blockades in support of land-based resistance movements. After graduating, Emma spent a year serving as the acting Executive Director of the New Brunswick Community Land Trust where she worked with small woodlot owners to resist the corporate takeover of farm and forestland in the province.
In 2017, Emma moved to Treaty 6 territory to pursue a Master’s degree in Sociology at the University of Alberta. Her research explores the intersections of migrant, climate, and capitalist crises, with her thesis looking specifically at migrant domestic workers’ experiences of the Fort McMurray wildfire. She also works as a research assistant at the Parkland Institute on the SSHRC-funded Corporate Mapping Project, which is investigating the power and influence of the fossil fuel industry in Western Canada. She is an organizer with Climate Justice Edmonton and Courage Coalition, and a solidarity organizer and volunteer with Migrante Alberta. She also sits on the Board of Directors of the newly-founded Alberta Workers’ Association for Research and Education (AWARE). Emma spends a lot of her time thinking about community land trusts, watching nature documentaries, and wishing Trudeau would fulfill his electoral promises.
Brenna is an inner city social worker. She is passionate about harm reduction and utilizes reflective practice to ensure her work with individuals is based on trauma-informed, anti-oppressive, and strengths-based approaches. Originally from Nova Scotia, Brenna moved to Alberta in 2015 after completing a degree in Forensic Paychology at St. Francis Xavier University. From there, she went on to study Social Work at the University of Calgary, and has been working the front lines ever since. Brenna enjoys hiking, road trips, and chocolate chip cookies.
Evan hails from Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia and he has lived in Alberta since 2010. He is a third year Honours Political Science student at the University of Alberta. He primarily studies Indigenous-Canada relations, and a desire for a renewed treaty relationship drives his work.
He has served on the Board of Directors of the Alberta Public Interest Research Group, organized for union representation of student staff at the U of A, and has volunteered for Alberta’s NDP since he was a high school student. He currently works for University of Alberta Residence Services.
When he’s not submitting research papers at the last minute, Evan enjoys being a friend to all dogs, listening to podcasts on public transit, and constantly improving the lenses through which he sees the world.
Jenna was born and raised in Edmonton, on Treaty 6 Territory. She completed a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Alberta, majoring in political science and minoring in international studies. During her time at the U of A, she had the opportunity to do two exchanges abroad, as well as travel to El Salvador as part of Students for Sustainable Housing, in conjunction with Habitat for Humanity. After university, Jenna took part in the Reflections on Rwanda Program, an educational program that provides students and young professionals the opportunity to travel to Rwanda and meet with genocide survivors, rescuers and representatives from government, community, and international peace-building organizations to learn about the impacts of genocide on society and reconciliation efforts. Through these travel and volunteer initiatives, Jenna was exposed to the vast inequity that exists between countries and within countries and became highly critical of the ways in which current and past colonizers respond to these inequities. This spurred an interest in development studies, with a focus on exploring the ways individuals can assist abroad to empower communities to meet their own needs rather than creating systems of dependency and reliance—she’s still thinking about this.
Currently, Jenna is trying to dismantle the system from the inside out, as she works as a policy analyst in the Ministry of Children’s Services. This work has further ignited her passion to focusing on issues of anti-oppression, decolonization, and reconciliation, and thinking about how empathy fits into all of this. When she’s not catching up on the Sunday links from her favorite Canadian feminist magazine—GUTS—she’s probably drinking a coffee or beer with a friend, out for a run, listening to some tunes or a podcast, or a combination of all three.
Salaam, Bonjour, and Hello! Sahar is a first generation Muslim Canadian. Her parents are from Tanzania in East Africa, and her ancestry is South Asian (pre-partition). Sahar grew up in Treaty 7 territory, in the city of Calgary and now lives in Treaty 6 territory in Amiskwaciwaskahikan/Edmonton.
Sahar's background is in public health, specifically in areas of mental wellness and social trauma. Her current advocacy work focuses on issues of Islamophobia, anti-oppression, decolonization, and reconciliation. She is involved with The Green Room's Leadership team, anti-racism initiatives within the city, and a Youth Reconciliation Initiative leader with Canadian Roots Exchange.
Sahar enjoys practicing Kathak, dancing to her endless playlist of Bollywood music in front of her mirror, and using all of the snapchat filters!
Hilary Kirkpatrick is an inner city social worker with a passion for social justice, trauma-informed practice, harm-reduction practice and anti-oppressive practice. She loves to examine societal structures and think creatively about strategies to dismantle them. Hilary loves to learn and collaborate, and she finds great peace in communities of like-minded folks. Hilary loves reading and stretching her brain, being silly with friends and family, cuddling with her crazy dog Juno and crafting up a craft storm.
Evan hails from Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia and he has lived in Alberta since 2010. He is a third year Honours Political Science student at the University of Alberta. He primarily studies Indigenous-Canada relations, and a desire for a renewed treaty relationship drives his work. He has served on the Board of Directors of the Alberta Public Interest Research Group, organized for union representation of student staff at the U of A, and has volunteered for Alberta’s NDP since he was a high school student. He currently works for University of Alberta Residence Services. When he’s not submitting research papers at the last minute, Evan enjoys being a friend to all dogs, listening to podcasts on public transit, and constantly improving the lenses through which he sees the world. I am in Edmonton Cohort 8!
Jana is a feminist, advocate, and critical thinker who loves to learn, challenge herself and explore the unknown. Originally hailing from Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta, Jana graduated with a Bachelor degree in Social Work from the University of Calgary in 2011 with her senior practicum taking place in Pune, India. While living in Calgary, Jana worked on the frontlines of the homelessness sector and volunteered at the Distress Centre on a crisis line. Jana then traveled to Halifax, Nova Scotia in 2013 to complete her Master of Social Work degree where she engaged in anti-oppressive practice and (un)learning. During her time out east, Jana worked with the Nova Scotia Advisory Council Status of Women where she researched for development of their provincial sexual violence prevention strategy and assisted in organizing a Campaign School for women. Currently, Jana works as a Social Worker at the Stollery Children’s Hospital in Edmonton, volunteers for the Sexual Assault Centre of Edmonton, and is a board member for Starfish Family Resources. Jana enjoys reading, being active, and engaging in dynamic conversations around dominant social discourse. She hopes to continually be a part of anti-oppressive change within herself, community, and society.
Alèthe is in her last semester at the University of Alberta, where she is pursuing a Master's degree in Public Health with a specialization in Global Health. After taking a class on Advocacy in Public Health, she is even more confident about challenging social injustices and bringing positive changes into the world. Since she's not a fan of seeing blood, she specializes in preventative approaches to medicine in order to empower vulnerable populations. Her dream job would be to work towards improving the accessibility and effectiveness of Burkina Faso's health care system. While, she considers Edmonton to be her 2nd home, Alèthe is an experienced traveler who has been across Canada, Australia, Africa, and Europe, and speaks an impressive three languages. When not doing the salsa, tango, or practicing her contemporary dance moves, she finds time to knit, watch soccer, and catch up on The Good Wife. Though she wants her next trip to be in Asia or South America, Alèthe will settle for Montréal, where the next Canadian Conference on Global Health is being held.