We are a grassroots organization designed By US, For US, and With US. Wonderfully Made is designed for girls from age 12 to young women aged 29.
Justine is starting her psychotherapy practice as a pre-licensed professional under supervision this year. She looks forward to integrating bottom-up and top-down modalities within an anti-oppressive, anti-racist, trauma-informed, and relational framework.
“My experience as a second generation Jamaican-Canadian woman gave me an awareness of interlocking systems of oppression growing up. Additionally, my degree in Political Science and Women’s Studies enhanced my understanding of feminist, anti-oppression, post-colonial and critical race theories. My position as a volunteer and intern at a constituency office gave me the opportunity to assist with a wide range of concerns including, but not limited to mental health, (dis)ability, housing discrimination, and incidents of racism at school. More importantly, I have learned that community and support are vital pieces to health and wellbeing. And, representation for BIPOC girls in particular is so important. For myself, growing up in spaces that lacked healthy representation deeply impacted my self-esteem and self-worth. There is so much power in feeling seen, understood and supported in a safe space. Having the opportunity to be part of this program as a mentee would have been so meaningful to me as a young girl through early adulthood”.
Tracy is front line social worker who currently provides support to youth with complex mental health needs. Tracy has experience as both service user and worker in various systems. She has work experiences in areas such as sexual violence prevention, housing, mental health and addictions; specifically working with youth, womyn identified folks and racialized communities. Tracy strives to include an intersectional and strength based approaches in her work that blends both clinical approaches and peer based models.
“This project is something I wish I had more of growing up as a young black womxn, who is first generation. Throughout my high school and post secondary career I was mentored and mentored others – specifically other first-generation students. I also have done several workshops for racialized youth specifically around mental health and coping strategies. I also unofficially pose as a mentor for several young womxn in my own life – holding space for the conversations I wish I had when I was their age. In my current role as a social worker/case manager I find there is a bit of a mentor relationships where boundaries permit – specifically for my younger black womxn clients who are looking for examples in their own life. I look forward to growing a network of mentors and supports for young womxn through this project”.
Faith is a 1st year post graduate student in York University’s Teacher Education College. Through her academic experience she has become well versed in equity-based teaching and promoting social justice within the classroom. She is knowledgeable in lesson planning, organizing and preparing activities for youth. She holds a position at a dance studio in Brooklyn, Ontario where she is responsible for managing several dance classes and creating competitive routines within a short period of time. She held a position as Competitive Director on the York University’s competitive dance team, and successfully led the team in competitions throughout Western Ontario.
“My passion for Arts Education stems from a desire to provide a safe space for youth to express themselves through the arts. I have completed a Bachelor of Arts in Dance and Education and am currently completing a Bachelor of Education at York University. I have designed and developed framework for post-secondary next steps program which was created to help students navigate their next steps within the arts post-secondary. I have hosted and organized a community dance workshop in support of a local charity called Dancing with Parkinson’s Canada. I am incredibly passionate about mentoring black youth and being the role model, I wish I had as a young artist. My combined education and acquired experience have equipped me with the skills to be an asset to this project”.
Adrianna is a 3rd year Global Health Student at York University. She is an active volunteer with 30 Elephants, Human Trafficking Group, BOSS dance company. She is passionate about Black women’s health and equity. She is the president of I.E, a competitive dance program at York University, inspiring hip hop dance culture in the University and in the GTA.
“This project is unique to me as I learned about the power of mentorship after travelling with 30 Elephants to a village in Kenya. The girls in the program had a similar mentorship, where the older girls in grade 11 and 12 were considered “mamas” to the new girls entering the school program. The girls had a similar bond and connection with each other, and it helped the younger girls transitioned well into adulthood. By creating a similar approach here, I hope to create greater representation and support to our Black girls who lack the mentorship and guidance that they require to be successful. My experience within social justice, health sciences, and personal life skills will help to navigate and oversea the program, and ensure that the programs’ fidelity remain the same. As well, the leaders within the program is also undergoing a similar process of transformation to become stronger leaders in their lives”.
Want to grow with us?
In 2021, a Outreach Coordinator will support the development of the Wonderfully Made Girl Program.
The outreach coordinator will lead the mentor and mentee recruitment by connecting with school principals, mental health leads and community organizations to join Wonderfully Made. They will coordinate the delivery of the workshops in the school, organize the topics within each delivery of the workshops, and ensure materials and food is organized and delivered on site. They will also interview and select mentors including reviewing their applications, completing police and background checks, and reviewing references. The outreach coordinator will also connect mentors with adult mentors and counsellors (if needed). The outreach coordinator will organize and deliver mentee workshops within schools and in community organizations. She will collaborate with the schools and community organizations to host the workshops and recruit participants, and she will oversee collecting research data (i.e. feedback surveys and process evaluations) for the project. The outreach coordinator will work in collaboration with the core members to host the annual retreat and one-day event for the project.