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Brette Crockett is a Registered Social Worker, born and raised in Saskatoon on Treaty 6 Territory. Her passions lie in trauma, resilience, and decolonization. In other parts of her life she fills the roles of mother, yoga teacher, performer, partner, activist, and life-long learner. For self care, Brette spends much of her time moving: practicing yoga, walking her dog, exploring partner acrobatics, cycling, and playing with her family. Being outside, reading, and being a bit too intense about current events would also make the list.
Born and raised in Regina Saskatchewan, Emma has always been passionate about the subtle beauty and diverse culture of Canada’s prairie region. She believes that the prairies have not been given enough credit for these subtleties and from so is continually threatened by land-use changes. This belief led Emma to pursue these interests in post-secondary education - she is in the process of completing her Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies with a minor in Sociology. Emma’s studies has also led her to develop an interest in climate change action in the prairies and how inaction perpetuates social inequalities, especially with prevailing economic activities that degrade the natural environment.
There are inevitable winners and losers when it comes to climate change. This interconnection of an ever-changing environment with social disparity and environmental racism has prompted her to enact and expand her community presence. Emma is a board member of Regina’s Public Interest Research Group, which has allowed her to take part in many other volunteer programs and events in the community. On her down-time, Emma loves practicing yoga, camping, canoeing, and pretty much any other activity outdoors. Next-Up, therefore, is the perfect platform to meet like-minded people who also want to see change in their surrounding community and maintain the integrity of the natural environment.
Julie King is a Metis woman who was born in Meadow Lake SK, but grew up in Saskatoon SK, which is where she lived until 2012, when she completed her Bachelor of Social Work degree. Julie currently resides in La Ronge SK and works for the Government of Saskatchewan serving youth in several northern communities throughout the province. Julie is passionate about youth justice issues. Julie’s proudest accomplishment is her nine year old son Sebastian.
Amber Bellegarde is a Cree/Nakota woman from the Little Black Bear First Nation located in Treaty 4 territory. She moved with her family to Saskatoon during her teen years and has lived there, give or take a year, ever since. After a couple years of post-secondary soul-searching, Amber graduated from SIAST’s Youth Care certificate program where her interests in program development and the justice system grew. She is returning to the University of Saskatchewan to complete a Native Studies degree and ultimately plans on continuing her education in law school. Education, justice, culture, and sports are four areas that she holds dear to her heart and hopes to incorporate in her future career. Amber wants to do her part, whatever that may be, in securing a safe, equitable, and prosperous way of life for future generations to come.
Samantha Mathews is a young activist who graduated from a youth leadership program called Next Up, a national program aimed at young leadership from 18-32 to engage in social and environmental issues and learn progressive leadership skills and she hopes to engage indigenous young people back in her territory to become politically engaged and learn traditional forms of governance.
Currently involved in advocating for food sovereignty, Samantha has done language and medicine walks and workshops with her mom and protecting indigenous food systems; has been involved in such movements like the Tiny House Warriors, a movement to build tiny houses to stop the Kinder Morgan pipeline from being built in Secwepemc territory; has also helped and visited frontline actions like Camp Ulluisc on St’at’imc territory against the logging and mining on ancestral lands and the Matriarch camp on Lekwegun territory occupying the BC premier’s office in support of banning the fish farms and supporting the fish farm occupations up on ‘Namgis and Musgamagw Dzawada’enuxw territories. She is currently on the working group for developing NAN’s food symposium and has been invited to blog for Sustain Ontario about her backpacking adventures of visiting nations and learning of medicines, teachings, food histories/systems, industry issues and actions that she documents on social media. She hopes to grow food for frontline action camps one day.
Hello! My name is Ashley Shaw, I’m a 24-year-old graduate student at the University of Saskatchewan. I’m in the School of Environment and Sustainability and I’m currently writing a thesis regarding the integration of Indigenous knowledge within Geographic Information Systems and its feasibility within Canadian forest management plans.
I am a first generation Canadian. My parents are from Guyana, a small country in South America. I’ve traveled all over and I can speak 3 languages (but I swear I can understand around 7!). I’ve studied almost everything you can think of and I’ve recently published a research paper regarding parasites infecting crickets.
Also, I hate beets. Which is unfortunate because I currently reside within a non-profit Ukrainian hostel.
Passionate about feminism and queering spaces, Chelle has taken part in several projects related to queer and trans* rights, including campaigns that successfully pushed for changes to the SK Human Rights Code and the SK Vital Statistics Act. She has been involved in a variety of community organizations in Saskatchewan, including TransSask Support Services, OUTSaskatoon, Global Gathering Place, and EGADZ. Currently, Chelle is completing a Master of Social Work program at the University of British Columbia.
Jordan Sherbino was born in Treaty 6 territory in rural Saskatchewan, but he has called Saskatoon home ever since first attending the University of Saskatchewan to begin a political studies degree—and he even called Saskatoon home when living in Victoria for graduate school. He now does communications work at the U of S in the Office of Aboriginal Initiatives where he has to continually unlearn to use the Oxford comma.
Jordan serves as the secretary of the board of directors for OUTSaskatoon, a non-profit that works to create a community that values people of diverse gender identities and sexualities. Previously, he was deeply involved with the students’ movement and served as an executive member of the University of Saskatchewan Students’ Union.
When Jordan isn’t attending meetings or contemplating the Canadian constitution, he likes to unwind by spending time with his partner Mitchell, failing at cooking extravagant foods, and enjoying the occasional pint.
A prairie girl hailing from Regina, and a graduate of Vancouver Film School, Paula has dedicated herself to advocacy for social and economic justice since first getting involved in electoral politics at the University of Regina. Raised by a single mom, Paula attributes her activist roots to her grade school teacher, who opened her eyes to the effects of settler colonialism, racism, and the legacy of residential schools in Canada at a young age.
Paula has continued to push for change while holding positions of influence – including promoting the cause of Palestinian rights and speaking out in favour of party renewal on national television as co-chair of the New Democratic Youth of Canada. She is passionate about ensuring more representation for women in politics, mental health awareness, and advocating for the rights of sexual assault survivors.
When she isn’t challenging the patriarchy or angry-tweeting about politics, Paula can be found cuddling with her rescue pup, Griswold, and drinking copious amounts of coffee.