JOSH - COMMUNITY FACILITATOR
Josh Ward is the dedicated Site Supervisor at 1JustCity outreach site, St. Matthews Maryland Community Ministry. He began at the Ministry for his practicum during his studies at the University of Winnipeg and Centre for Christian Studies and we loved him so much we asked him to stay on with the team! Now Josh has a wide range of responsibilities in overseeing everything at the site. He spends his days working with volunteers and community members coming through the site, applying for grants, and dreaming up new program ideas. Josh’s favourite part of his job is building relationships and creating a family at the outreach sites that go through the good and bad times together. He is motivated most by the ‘magic’ that happens at the space when people come together and work together to make a real difference in the lives of those who walk through the doors. Josh’s kindness beams through the work he does at the ministry which is driven by the desire to make a difference and respond to poverty in our city and globally.
LAURA - COMMUNITY CAPACITY BUILDER
Laura Everett is the Community Capacity Builder at St. Matthews Maryland Community Ministry. She was encouraged by her friend to apply for the position and we are lucky that she did because she is amazing and so fun to work with! Before joining us she ran a free clothing program at a larger shelter in the city, so she brings a lot of experience and creativity to her role with us. Laura is motivated by social justice which she has been studying for a long time, and which makes her such a visionary for the work we do at 1JustCity. She does a variety of jobs during the day which include administrative work, event planning, and pastoral care. She is an exceptional problem solver which she proves in her work with community members who are accessing the site. Her favourite part of her job is seeing the special moments when people start believing in themselves.
LORI - INDIGENOUS CULTURAL SAFETY LEADER
Meet our Indigenous Cultural Safety Leader Lori Abraham. Lori is the newest staff member to join the 1JustCity team. Lori brings Indigenous Cultural programming to the St.Matthews Maryland Community Ministry site. She has spent years learning from ceremony and elders from her home community of Sagkeeng. She is knowledgeable in teachings surrounding the Ojibway Language, medicines and Indigenous Community values. Some of the ways in which she has brought those teachings to the site is by teaching how to smudge with medicines, conducting sharing circles, teaching beading and sewing and an interactive language bingo. Lori is devoted to providing access to language and cultural teachings through a harm reduction approach; this to her means that access to language and ceremony should have no barriers or restrictions. With her focus on using traditional values to battle addictions and improve mental health she has been able to provide a culturally grounded and safe environment in our drop-in. Lori is accepting and compassionate when helping those who seek to reconnect to their indigenous cultural identity, her teachings offer healing, re-connection and education for all who want to learn.
TESSA - EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Tessa Blaikie Whitecloud is a fearless advocate for social justice and community wellness in Manitoba. Her approach in her professional and volunteer work is: "What's the best I can bring to make my community better and reach the goals of whom I’m working with?" That’s why it’s so awesome that she’s our Executive Director! She makes our city better by building bridges with all communities and bringing people together to solve large and local challenges.
From making it possible for people to have a warm place to sleep to creating understanding about colonization through custom workshops for businesses and NGOs with her husband Hanwakan, or in her former work teaching at the University of Winnipeg, she displays her compassion for others and the possibilities for healthy places and people in our province and city. Tessa loves sharing stories that opens people's hearts to the idea that each person needs some happiness in their days, be it fresh socks, a hug or a warm place to sleep.