Agness Banda is an Intern in Lusaka, Zambia and a 2021 Spur Change Youth Champion. Originally from Lundazi, Zambia, Agness has been part of VIDEA’s Education Program for many years. She recently graduated with a degree in primary teaching, with distinction! Agness began her internship with VIDEA in August 2020 where she has been able to apply the skills and knowledge she gained throughout her studies.
Bertha Mukonda is our Education Hub Team Leader. Bertha joined VIDEA through Women for Change in grade 11 and has been a part of the Education Program with VIDEA for 8 years. Despite the hardship of rural life, Bertha did extremely well in Grade 12 and was accepted to the University of Zambia in 2015. She graduated with a Bachelor of Education in Special Education in 2019, and became our Education Hub Team Leader in 2020. Based in Lusaka, Bertha is keen to continue learning about global issues. Bertha was one of the delegates at the 65th Commission on the Status of Women – you can hear about her experience here!
Brianna Parent Long
Brianna Parent Long is the Gender and Diversity Officer at VIDEA. She is passionate about sexual and reproductive health and rights, PSEA, and sex work advocacy, all reinforced by her studies, volunteer experience at AIDS clinics, being a support worker in mental health housing, and being on Digna’s advisory committee. Brianna holds an undergraduate degree from Dalhousie University in Political Science and International Development Studies and a Master’s degree from the University of Victoria. Brianna is currently at Carleton University for her PhD in Political Science with an interest in feminist international relations. Brianna's idea of a perfect Sunday is a cup of Orange Pekoe tea, a big window, and watching her favorite show of the week.
Cheyenne Kechego works on VIDEA’s Futures For Youth program, Wellness Wednesdays and the Anti-Racism Action Program. She is from Munsee-Delaware First Nation in Ontario where she lives with her 2 year old daughter. Cheyenne aspires to get a PhD in social work one day and hopes to give the children of her community a voice. She is committed to loving herself, healing her inner child, and teaching her daughter to do the same. Cheyenne loves art and music, spending time outside, travelling, and creating new adventures and memories with her daughter.
Chris Singelengele is VIDEA’s Indigenous Internship Coordinator and is instrumental in supporting the journey of each and every intern who passes through VIDEA. Chris is passionate about climate change and is a strong advocate for the equality of women and girls. Chris joined VIDEA after many years working as a gender rights activist with Women for Change, focused on supporting gender equality in rural development projects. Chris is a former teacher, head teacher, and youth empowerment professional. Chris is a strong advocate for the rights of vulnerable and under-represented youth.
Deena Watson (she/her) is VIDEA’s Indigenous Governance Officer based on the traditional and unceded lands of the lək̓ʷəŋən People. She is a proud Nêhiyaw, Anishinaabe, and Scottish woman from Mistawasis Nêhiyawak on Treaty 6 territory and Muscowpetung Saulteaux Nation on Treaty 4 territory. Deena first joined VIDEA in 2019 as an IAYI intern placed in rural Uganda to gain knowledge around global human rights, gender equality, and environmental sustainability. She is currently finishing her undergraduate degree majoring in Indigenous Studies at the University of Victoria. Deena’s passions revolve around traditional knowledge, holistic wellness, community building, and supporting the intersectionality theory of Indigenous feminisms that practice decolonization, Indigenous sovereignty, and human rights for all Indigenous women and their families.
Delaney George-Anne Drachenberg
Delaney George-Anne Drachenberg is a young Métis activist currently residing in Iqaluit, Nunavut. They identify as queer, transgender, and nonbinary, and approach all of their work from an intersectional lens. She also suffers from psychosis and is diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder, both of which play a large role in their perspective and work. She is passionate about equity and making spaces safe and accessible for all people.
There is a lot of power within a name. I am named after my mom, and my great-grandma: Elizabeth Carol Alexandra Peters and traditional name; Kwikws (sound it out: Kwee-ooo-Kshh), which means small in my language of Ucwalmicwts (idk how to teach that one in a single note bubble 😁) because my grandma Elizabeth was a very small lady (I was taller than her by the age of 8, which can also be true today but we're talking 4'7 yenno?). And with these names I am small yet powerful and deeply loving, I don't need to take up a lot of space in life to make a difference aye ☺️. And I do this work in honor of my ancestors who have come before me, the earth that loves me, and the generations to come after me in hopes I keep the life I love intact for them so they have something to work with and a place to call home. Thank you for your time in reading this.
Febby Ngwira is an Intern in Lusaka, Zambia. Febby, who has been part of VIDEA’s Education Program since junior secondary school (over 10 years!), recently completed a diploma in Early Childhood Education and has plans to pursue a degree in the near future. Febby is enjoying her internship and learning many new things.
Graeme Kilshaw is VIDEA’s Digital Connection and Inclusion Officer. Graeme attended the University of Victoria as a Millennium scholar and went on to found the EduCube Canada project. EduCube is a communication and teaching tool with an alphabet code that sounds the way it looks. There is a correlation between light and sound, or geometry and phonetics, making it intuitive. Graeme is passionate about inclusion and global connection, which is what led him to both EduCube and the VIDEA community. He wants to inspire a new way of thinking and believes in the power of kindness and leading by example.
Hayden Leo is another exciting new addition to the VIDEA Board. Hayden joined VIDEA several years ago as a Shared Wisdom Youth Leader, where he worked with like-minded individuals to advocate for Gender Equality. He currently lives in Campbell River, where he is working in Forestry and exploring Vancouver Island. He comes from a First Nations Band from Mt. Currie, North of Whistler. Hayden is also a coach for the First Nations Snowboard Team – a sport he developed a passion for over many years living in Whistler.
Hillary Ronald (she/her/hers) is passionate about climate justice and how it intersects with basically everything (and promises to have a podcast to back up all her fun facts). She is a settler on both sides of her family and currently lives and works on lək̓ʷəŋən territory. She has the BEST job working with Indigenous youth and not so secretly hopes to be part of a seaweed farming collective in the future.
Isaac Mbewe is VIDEA’s Safety and Logistics Coordinator in Zambia. Isaac is passionate about fair trade and justice for all. Before joining our team at VIDEA, Isaac worked as part of the team at Women for Change, advocating for gender equality. A significant part of this role was engaging traditional leaders in Zambia on the role that they can play in implementing gender equity within their territories. During this work, Isaac met all of the traditional leaders while travelling Zambia far and wide. Isaac helps to coordinate our Indigenous Internship programme with a focus on supporting logistics and the safety of interns. Isaac has an extraordinary record of safety and is drawn to open-minded and honest people.
Isabelle Herzig has been part of the VIDEA family for over 10 years! In this time, Isabelle has coordinated a range of VIDEA youth, and other, programming in the Nelson area, most recently working with our youth reconciliation project. Isabelle lives in Ymir with husband Marcus and daughter Fawn. Isabelle shares a love of ballet with Lynn, and they can be seen taking ballet classes together when Lynn is in Nelson, or Isabelle in Victoria! Isabelle is passionate about supporting access to education and opportunities for under-represented youth. During our COVID restrictions, Isabelle has been delivering professional development training online for the whole VIDEA team – we are now better communicators as a result of Isabelle’s excellent training and facilitation! This is a photo from the top of Pulpit in Nelson, a hike that Isabelle does often.
Jennifer Dosanj is VIDEA’s Facilitation and Engagement Officer. She was part of the Connect with Kindness project, and works on the Global Solidarity Challenge committee and the Digital Kindness App development team. Jennifer, who graduated from the University of Victoria in 2010, is passionate about gender equality, human rights, inclusion and disability rights. She loves bowling, outdoor adventures, dancing, listening to Hindi and Punjabi music, and trips to the gym, mall and movie theatre.
JR Brass is a Project Officer at VIDEA and a former IAYI intern. He is currently a student at the First Nations University of Canada where he is majoring in Indigenous Studies. JR is passionate about cultural identity and sustainability – he wants to make sure that we never get too greedy for our resources.
Kassidy George is T’souke First Nations and grew up in Sooke, BC. She is a Community Climate Justice Coordinator for T’souke at VIDEA, a non-profit organization based in what is known as Victoria British Columbia. Kassidy is very motivated to help and encourage our youth to use their voices, increase the importance of knowledge provided for climate justice in each community. Her interests include art (drawing, painting, carving) as well as sewing, sailing, cooking, and fishing.
Katie Haworth (she/her)
Katie Haworth (she/her) is VIDEA’s Programme Manager and Inclusion Team Lead. She is so grateful to learn and work alongside the VIDEA community. Kate lives on the traditional territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Wendat, the Anishinabeg, and the Haudenosaunee people. She is either reading or talking about books!
Katelynne Herchak (She/Elle)
Katelynne Herchak (She/Elle) is VIDEA’s Manager of Indigenous Governance and Decolonial Practices & Policy. Kate’s background is in Indigenous Family Support Work and has her Bachelor in Justice Studies at Royal Roads University where she was awarded the Lt. Governor’s Medal for Inclusion, Democracy & Reconciliation. Now, Kate is doing a Masters of Geography at the University of Victoria. Her research is centering Indigenous youth in traditional knowledge and governance of land and water in Tanzania. Kate is passionate about decolonizing education and integrating Indigenous knowledge systems and perspectives into spaces to create meaningful relationships and change.
Kayla Watson-McNab. Tansī! (Hello) I am Kayla Watson-McNab and currently 21 years old, from George Gordon First Nation’s located in Treaty 4 territory. I am in my fifth year at the First Nation’s University of Canada, studying Indigenous Studies. A global issue I am interested in is the acknowledgement of bringing home the children, along with being a voice for those who did not make it home from Residential school’s. I am the first generation in my family to not attend these schools, so It is very important to be the voice for those who did not have one, and to speak on the intergenerational trauma Canada has done towards our people. The reason for being a part of this team is to help me grow as a person, and to gain knowledge I am able to use in the future, along with meeting new people!
Lesley Palmer (she/her)
Lesley Palmer (she/her) has been the Programme Manager of VIDEA for 14 years. Lesley’s background is in Women’s Studies. She hails from Omemee, Ontario and moved to BC after exploring her 20’s in Halifax-DJ’ing and working in a vegan restaurant. In her time at VIDEA, Lesley has managed both International Youth Internship programmes, as well as Indigenous Youth Internship programmes. Lesley believes that it’s time to re-imagine and re-create the way we live in the world. It’s time to dismantle old systems, to listen, unlearn, learn, and fight for justice. Lesley lives in Victoria, with her jazz-drummer partner Kelby and daughter Juna.
Lili Coyes-Loiselle first joined VIDEA as an IAYI intern in 2020 and is now the Manager of Indigenous Youth Engagement and Reconciliation. Lili was born and raised in Treaty 6 territory in Edmonton, Alberta and she is a proud member of the Métis Nation of Alberta. She is currently living in Calgary and completing the final year of her undergraduate degree at the University of Calgary with a double major in Development Studies and Indigenous Studies. Lili is especially passionate about Indigenous rights, sustainability, gender equality, and the intersections between them all. On a given day, she is likely to be found out hiking, biking, running, or anything else involving the outdoors! Lili is so grateful to be able to work and learn alongside such an incredible team and family at VIDEA.
Lindsey Tipewan is the Creative Engagement Officer at VIDEA and a former IAYI Intern with Women for Change in Zambia. She was born in North Battleford, Saskatchewan and her home community is Witchekan Lake First Nation, Treaty 6. Lindsey enjoys learning – throughout her internship, she learned about governance, gender, and the environment from her friends in Uganda and Zambia, as well as fellow and former interns. Lindsey loves to draw, have fun, hang out with friends and family, and go on road trips.
Lisa Hernandez is VIDEA’s Finance Manager, administrator, and all round rational thinker. Lisa, who started as a practicum student in 2011, plays a central role in our day-to-day operations and we couldn’t operate without her. She really is a jack of all trades! Lisa holds a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and Intercultural Education Training from the University of Victoria. Lisa is passionate about the achievement of universal human rights, and youth and womens’ empowerment. Lisa is a critical and lateral thinker and has answers when others don’t. The entire team aspires to having Lisa’s calm-headedness and never-ending reserves of patience. Lisa lives in Victoria with her husband, dog and sometimes team member, Rocky, and four adorable children.
Lynn Thornton has been the Executive Director of VIDEA for the past 18 years. Before moving to Canada and taking up this role, Lynn worked at Greenpeace UK, and ActionAid UK. Lynn lives in Victoria, with her partner Kris and an opinionated chocolate lab – Casey. Lynn has two sons – Adan, a pilot who lives in Winnipeg, and Dylan, a kinesiology student at Dalhousie University in Halifax. Lynn is passionate about working to achieve universal human rights and about actions that empower youth to lead global development. Lynn is co-Chair of the of the BC Council for International Cooperation, and a Board member with the environmental school in Victoria, Oak and Orca Bioregional school. Lynn is an expert in neglecting gardening and household activities in order to read and do ballet.
Michael Songiso is VIDEA’s Anti-Racism and Climate Justice Advisor – Vulnerable Youth, in Lusaka, Zambia. Michael is passionate about the deeply interrelated topics of climate change, food security, gender equality and access to education. He is an amazing storyteller and writer, and is currently writing a book that indirectly calls for climate action. Michael has recently been accepted to UBC’s SDG Praxis Institute 2020 Program, the theme of which is Shock, System Change and Agency.
Miranda Yates is VIDEA’s Inclusion Officer, focusing on identifying ways to engage differently-abled youth on global issues. She is also a History and Gender Studies student at the University of Victoria in Victoria, BC. Miranda is invested in Indigenous rights, improving living conditions in Indigenous communities, and raising awareness about injustices. She is excited to learn more about global issues and how we can come together to help these issues. Miranda is an athlete who loves cheerleading, baseball, basketball, and wrestling.
Obino Chibilika is VIDEA’s Internship Facilitator in Lundazi, Zambia. Obino facilitates the stay of interns at the house in Lundazi and orients them to their new community and local issues. Obino is passionate about equitable distribution of resources. He is an extraordinary caretaker and adapts well in multicultural environments. Obino always wants to be learning new things.
Patashi Pimms (she/they)
Patashi Pimms (she/they) is Nlakampux and Yakama and grew up in Lytton, BC. They are a Community Climate Justice Coordinator for TLKemchEEn at VIDEA, a non-profit organization based out of what is known as Victoria, British Columbia. Patashi is very passionate about amplifying Indigenous Youth voices, Indigenous Sovereignty, and Climate Justice. Her interests include photography, videography, web design, kayaking, and sewing.
Rachel Barr is VIDEA’s Head of Youth Opportunities and Leadership – she lives on the traditional lands of the Lekwungen speaking peoples with her dying plants, which she just can’t manage to keep alive. Rachel became part of the VIDEA family in 2015 as an IYIP intern and joined as a staff member in 2018. She is a collaborator on a number of VIDEA programs, including the International Indigenous Youth internships and the Journey from the Heart programming. Rachel feels lucky to work within a local and international context, alongside her friends, colleagues, and partner organizations, who are always teaching her new things about the global issues that connect us all.
Rose Busingye is VIDEA’s Intern Coordinator in Entebbe, Uganda. She is a passionate supporter of Black Lives Matter and integrates this into her work and personal life. She believes strongly in the importance of equality, inclusion and diversity. She wants equal rights to be reached for all women and girls. Rose is an extremely selfless person who wants to see others succeed and achieve their goals. Rose loves being a mentor, and she is a fabulous mentor to many, including VIDEA interns!
Sarah Danks is VIDEA’s Communication and Fundraising Officer, but she started off with VIDEA as a summer student in 2016. Sarah works on VIDEA’s annual fundraiser, the Global Solidarity Challenge, newsletters, and she runs our social media. She has her BSc in Psychology with a Minor in Professional Communication from UVic and she lives in Victoria on the traditional and unceded territories of the Lək̓ʷəŋən speaking people. Sarah is passionate about learning, human rights, photography, and accessibility. In her free time, you can find her curled up with a fantasy novel, a cup of tea, and her dog, Callie.
Sekwanahcahk/Shelby Anderson is an Indigenous person from Northern Alberta. Sekwan is passionate about her community, her environment, and Indigenous ways of knowing. They are currently a Community Climate Justice Coordinator at VIDEA. At work, Sekwan collaborates with others on communications, curriculum creation, and content creation. Shelby enjoys spending time in nature with her family, working in the community, and learning traditional plant knowledge. She has Metis and Cree ancestry from Gift Lake and Wabasca. Shelby always wants to acknowledge her Nookum, Mary Louise Oar, in everything they do.
Skw’akw’as (Sunshine) Dunstan-Moore (She/Her)
Skw’akw’as (Sunshine) Dunstan-Moore (She/Her) is a Nlakapamux and Yakima youth who grew up in Washington State & Lytton, BC. Sunshine is a Community Climate Justice Coordinator for TLKemchEEn (Lytton) along working at VIDEA Sunshine is also a member of the Youth Advisory Group with the Canadian Commission for UNESCO and a Generation Power Intern with Indigenous Clean Energy. Sunshine is passionate about Indigenous and Human Rights, amplifying silenced voices, and spreading awareness on the climate crisis. Some of Sunshine’s interests are photographing, filmmaking, painting, and hiking.
Taleetha Tait is Wet’suwet’en Gitxsan and African-American, born into Tsayu beaver clan. She is a daughter, granddaughter, big sister, niece, and an aunty to many. Taleetha’s journey with VIDEA started as an intern in 2015 and now she is the Manager of Wellness Programs coordinating the international Indigenous internships in Zambia in person and virtually. She also nurtures the holistic well-being of the Indigenous youth who are a part of the VIDEA community. Throughout her career, Taleetha has worked with First Nations Organizations within the areas of early childhood education, youth outreach, and land-based youth camps. Taleetha is a Canada World Youth alumni as well as a BC public service Indigenous youth internship (IYIP) alumni. Taleetha is a proud VIDEA community member who is committed to nurturing the gifts of Indigenous youth and amplifying marginalized voices.
Terrance Scott is a member of T’souke nation, raised in Sooke, and works as a Community Climate Justice Coordinator with VIDEA. Terrance is both fascinated and terrified about the future of our planet and wants to do anything he can to help shape it to be a greener and brighter place for all of us.
Vanessa Sterling is VIDEA’s Indigenous Youth Facilitator. Vanessa is passionate about helping build a sustainable future for our Indigenous youth and partners overseas. Vanessa, who is from Simpcw First Nation in Barriere and a past VIDEA IAYI intern, thrives on being a life-long learner. She loves taking trainings to better her education and believes that education makes her family and community stronger. Her most recent certification was becoming a First Responder in her community. Vanessa coordinates some of VIDEA’s youth work in the Okanagan region, plays other fabulous roles in our team. In non-COVID times, Vanessa is one of our IAYI Community-Supported Cohort, Indigenous Youth support people, set to accompany Indigenous interns on their journeys to Zambia and Uganda.
Veronica Nyirongo is an Education Hub Intern in Luwingu, Northern Province, Zambia and is originally from Chasefu in the Eastern part of Zambia. Veronica has been part of VIDEA’s Education Programme for many years. She graduated in 2019 with a Diploma in Art and English and she also holds certificates in life skills, entrepreneurship, ICT, critical thinking and problem solving. Veronica always fight hard to help her community to fight against early marriages, gender based violence, and works towards gender equality and helping young girls by counselling and motivating them.