September 6, 2017 - by Jessica Howard

“Every social change movement goes through ups and downs … we may be in one of those step-back moments, but we’re not going all the way back.”

Although she’s concerned, Tina Tchen’s unique vantage point helps her put things in perspective: Tina served as Assistant to President Obama, Chief of Staff to First Lady Michelle Obama, and Executive Director of the White House Council on Women and Girls. She also led the first-ever United State of Women Summit.

You can join us for a rare opportunity to hear Tina’s outlook on leadership, public policy, and empowering women and girls, at the Canadian Women’s Foundation Breakfast events in Toronto and Calgary this October.

Keep reading to find out how she’s continuing to rally for equality, and why she sees a silver lining in the storm clouds.

August 28, 2017 - by Jill Andrew

It’s back to school season! The thought of a new grade or even a new school may be a little daunting for many children, but there’s the usual excitement to see that old friend again, say hi to their favourite teacher, or go shopping for that cool back to school item with parents or guardians. However, for far too many of our children, back to school means back to body shaming and size- and appearance-based discrimination on a daily basis – and that’s not including cyberbullying which never takes summer break.

According to PREVNet, Canada’s authority on research and resources for bullying prevention, 75% of people say they’ve been affected by bullying and 78% of Canadians say not enough is being done to stop bullying in their community. And unfortunately, when it comes to cyberbullying, we know from a recent Canadian Women’s Foundation study that Canadians aren’t optimistic about the future: 87% of Canadians believe the next generation of women in Canada will be just as or more likely to experience online harassment. The effects of bullying online and offline can include lowered self-esteem, habitual school absenteeism, poor academic performance, and heightened risks for anxiety, depression, eating disorders, engaging in unhealthy relationships, criminal activities, and even suicide.

August 23, 2017 - by Inti Cancino Rocha and Kaitlin Wyenberg

Open Door Group is a non-profit provider of employment services. They provide an eight week employment program out of the Tradeworks Training Facility – providing training and employment services to women interested in Carpentry related Trades. Tradeworks Training Society is a society that assists women with barriers to employment by providing secure meaningful work in woodworking and fabrication. It has previously received Canadian Women’s Foundation funding from our Economic Development grants program.

Breaking Down Barriers, Building a New Life

Inti Cancino Rocha

For years I was looking for the opportunity to get into carpentry.

During this time, I attempted to work with two construction companies but did not have success due to my lack of skills, since my background was in graphic design.

 

August 14, 2017 - by Brittni Jacobson

Each Thursday night, Jennifer, a Malahat Nation Elder, has an important job to do. As a facilitator of the Circles of Care-Circles of Courage girls’ group, she’s in charge of the carpool.

Before each session, she makes the drive to pick up girls from her community and the neighbouring Cowichan Nation. When the program first launched in 2016, the girls didn’t say much during carpool. Now, when they see Jennifer’s car pull up, they come bounding out of their homes, full of excitement. The girls’ group has become one of the best parts of their week.

August 9, 2017 - by Nora Richter

Research shows that girls as young as 6 have gendered ideas about intelligence, and who is best suited to careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math).

TechGyrls is a program that gives girls ages 9 to 13 the opportunity to explore, create, design, and share in all things STEM.  Funded by the Canadian Women’s Foundation’s Girls’ Fund, this YWCA Cambridge program is empowering girls to engage in STEM when society tells them they can’t.

The program doesn’t have a curriculum. Instead it’s led by the girls’ interests and ideas, making each program as unique as the girls who participate. Naturally, when the program received funding to purchase a 3D printer, the TechGyrls were excited to learn how to use it.

After spending some time learning about how the printer worked and designing their own products to print, one TechGyrls group at a Cambridge Public School decided they could to do more. They looked to eNABLING the future, an online community that openly shares the files and instructions needed to print and produce prosthetic hands.

August 4, 2017 - by Jessica Howard and Keetha Mercer

For Ben Lord, the Making Waves program was a game-changer.

“The program opened my eyes to a lot of things I hadn’t thought about before, like how a lot of relationship problems are about gender.”

He attended the teen healthy relationships program, which received funding from the Canadian Women’s Foundation, when he was a high school student in New Brunswick. Teen healthy relationship programs help participants break down gender stereotypes, recognize the signs of abusive relationships, and practise the skills they need to develop healthy ones.

Although teen healthy relationships programs are offered across Canada, there is a lack of coordinated efforts to link and support these programs.

August 1, 2017 - by Carly Friesen - 2 Comments

This post has been edited and was originally published on CarlyFriesen.com

I was, as Britney Spears would put it, not a girl, not yet a woman, when I excitedly started my first year of Engineering at the University of Guelph. I thought I was going to become an engineer, change the world, and bust through the glass ceiling Wonder Woman style. I had absolutely no doubts in my mind that I could and would do it.

As time passed, I started to wonder how thick this glass ceiling really was. With each year I began to see gender come into play more and more.