Honouring Women and Girls in Vaughan
International Women’s Day celebrates the remarkable achievements of women across the globe, while recognizing the need for greater gender equality. Enormous progress has been made, but there is more work to do for women to reach their full potential. Everyone in Ontario has a role to play as we work toward that goal. Today I am recognizing the women who are leading change in our community. The Leading Women/Leading Girls Building Communities Recognition program celebrates women and girls whose volunteer work has improved the lives of others in their community. This year’s recipients from Vaughan are:
- Shernett has proven to be a champion for equity and inclusion in our community.
- As the Executive Director of the Vaughan African Canadian Association, Shernett actively works to provide support to the black community in Vaughan and York Region in areas such as health, employment and education.
- Her efforts include organizing anti-bullying and anti-racism assemblies in schools, planning black history month events and working on the creation of an African Canadian Cultural and Community Centre in Vaughan.
- Shernett also engages youth through her Ballers Paradise Sports Foundation, and serves as an advocate and role model for children with sickle-cell disease.
- Meenu has proven to be a passionate champion for accessibility and issues affecting women in our community.
- As CEO of the non-profit organization Accessibility for All, Meenu actively works with local organizations and community members to increase accessibility awareness and the implementation of accessibility plans.
- She also aims to increase education, programming, community integration and employment opportunities for people with disabilities.
- Since the age of eighteen, Sonia has demonstrated her passion for community, through her organized events, which raise funds for local organizations such as Hospice Vaughan and the Vaughan Community Health Centre.
- Her annual Butterfly Kisses Memorial Release not only raises funds for charity, but also unites community members by remembering and honouring loved ones that have passed on.
- Iolanda has been an active member of the community for many years as well as one of the founding members of Hospice Vaughan.
- She continues to volunteer many hours helping seniors and those most vulnerable in the community through her involvement with local charities like Hospice Vaughan and Community and Home Assistance to Seniors (CHATS).
- Iolanda spends countless hours visiting palliative patients and brings a joyful energy to everything she does and everyone she meets.
- Pierina has been an dedicated volunteer with the Mackenzie Health Volunteer Association for many years
- Whether it’s within the “Hands Up for Health” program or meeting with citizens through the “Brand Ambassadors” program, she impresses all with her enthusiasm and her message
- More recently, Pierina has accepted the position of Gift Shop Committee Chair and Treasurer.