Meet the KAIROS Delegates on the Guatemala Study Tour
elen HelenHelenTansii, Jahonnache. I am a Cree, Dane Zaa, and English woman currently in my last year of studies for my Bachelors of Social Work. I have worked for an NGO creating a program for Indigenous young people to do cultural exchanges and build schools in Nicaragua. My Spanish is incoherent at best, but I am usually aided by my estranged attempts at hand signals. I went to the U.N. in Geneva, Switzerland as an Indigenous Youth Ambassador in 2012 with the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society and KAIROS. I have been involved in a lot of grassroots efforts including organizing INM rallies/teach- ins, events around protecting a river in my traditional territory from a looming Hydro Dam, and other efforts promoting awareness and understanding. I was on the planning committee for the KAIROS 2013 Western InterGenerational Gathering, Elements of Justice. I am excited to meet everyone and to gain a deeper understanding of the strengths and struggles of my brothers and sisters in Guatemala.
Toronto, KAIROS office (Mississaugas of the New Credit Territory)
I am very excited to be a part of the leadership team of this study tour. I work at KAIROS as the Latin American partnerships coordinator and help coordinate the Women of Courage program, which seeks to strengthen relationships and collaboration between women human rights defenders in the global south and in Canada. I am privileged to work with civil society partners in Latin America and to support their advocacy efforts and education in Canada, particularly in the areas of resource extraction, Indigenous rights and gender justice. I first travelled to Guatemala in 2007 and met with CEIBA, Association of Community Development, a KAIROS partner that will be our host during the tour. Since then I have travelled to Guatemala about once a year and each time I am left with a deeper appreciation of the creative resistance and courage of the people, the complexity of the issues, the stunning beauty of the country, and the need for us to take action in Canada