A BIT ABOUT WAWC
Our mission is to provide all Aboriginal women in Whitehorse, regardless of their origin, with access to culturally relevant programs, projects and supports in a safe space that enrich our community through full participation in our cultures, communities, governments and economies.
OUR LOGO STORY
Wanting an image to represent our organization, we worked with graphic designer Anna Crawford who helped us adopt this beautiful image. Adapted from beadwork by Vashti Etzel, Golden Eye Designs this logo represents the strength and fertility of Aboriginal women as life givers and caretakers of our people.
The nine large circles represent the eight Traditional Language groups in Yukon and English. The fourteen smaller circles represent our fourteen separate and distinct First Nations in Yukon.
Connection – We believe that the power of connection to family, community, language and culture fosters the wellness of Aboriginal women and strengthens their families and community.
Growth – We encourage the education and advancement of Aboriginal women and girls by providing culturally relevant supports, opportunities for growth, training and positive role modeling.
Diversity – We honour our ancestors by celebrating the diversity and unique contributions of each individual. We respect the rights and freedoms of all Indigenous women to speak their own languages and practice their own traditions and cultures.
Compassion – We practice treating each other with compassion. This includes acting with integrity and respect and showing love, care and empathy to each other.
Equality – We are inclusive and provide equal opportunities and voice to Aboriginal women, and their needs and concerns, in a fair, respectful and judgement-free environment, and equally value the roles and abilities of all genders in our communities.
Adeline Webber is one of founding members of Whitehorse Aboriginal Women’s Circle and is currently the President. She is from the Kukhhiittan Clan of the Teslin Tlingit Nation. Her Tlingit name is Kh’ayade. She has spent her life being an activist. Since the mid -seventies, she has made a lifelong commitment to bettering her community in a variety of ways, and has served as a volunteer and/or director of numerous boards, committees and corporations
Kirsten Maides, of the Métis Nation, has always been involved in her community. Whether it be in Faro where she grew up, or her current home of Whitehorse, Kirsten prides herself in being both a leader and a helper. Kirsten has a long resume of work experiences, which are mostly related to the Social Services. Kirsten is currently employed at Teegatha’Oh Zheh as a Support Worker, and is a proud community ambassador for the #moosehidecampaign.
Jerry L. Soltani, Athabascan/Tlingit woman was born and raised in Auk Bay, twelve miles north of Juneau, Alaska. As a Sealaska shareholder and Elder she has worked on several indigenous issues; dearest to her heart is Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. She spends time between Whitehorse and Juneau, sharing life to the fullest with her family and friends!
LaSänMą, Sharon Shadow is a citizen of the Champagne and Aishihik First Nations in Yukon. She is Ägunda, member of the Wolf clan. Sharon has been involved in the fields of education and language for decades. She has experience as an educational advisor to Yukon Education on aboriginal education, language and culture. Currently she is the Yukon First Nation Languages Coordinator at the Department of Education, Government of Yukon. LaSänMą is a champion of Yukon First Nations language revitalization and continues to learn her own Southern Tutchone language. She believes that Yukon First Nation ways of knowing, doing and being contributes to student confidence, identity and school retention.
Michelle Friesen is a proud citizen of the Ta'an Kwach'an Council and she belongs to the wolf clan. Her great grandparents are Louis and Pauline Irvine. Her great aunt, Ruth Massie, was the former Grand Chief of CYFN.
Michelle moved to the Yukon five years ago to be with her husband, Travis. Family has always been and important value in her life and she has loved reconnecting with her large extended family in the Yukon, who have welcomed her with open arms and made her feel right at home.
Michelle has always had an interest in helping others and in supporting her community and she is very excited about the many opportunities that worked with Whitehorse Aboriginal Women's Circle may provide.
Janine Peters is a Kwakwaka'wakw F.N. woman whose family is from Wuikinuxv Nation in Rivers Inlet, on the central coast of British Columbia.
She is now a Yukoner of 25 years, who grew up primarily in the Greater Vancouver area until 1995 when she moved to Whitehorse.
She's a semi-retired softball player, and curler, sometimes golfer who has been involved as a sports volunteer/coach with Special Olympics Yukon for close to 20 years. She was on the board with Special Olympics Yukon, then hired on as Program Director for 2 years.
She now has a very rewarding job as a support worker at Teegatha' Oh Zheh.
DIANA LEE JIMMY
More information coming soon!
Aaniin! Bethany, Standing Cedar Woman, is of mixed nationality from Southern Ontario. She identifies and shows great respect to her Anishnaabekwe roots and Mukwa clan. This is her first year serving on the WAWC board. Bethany is interested in increasing her cultural awareness of the Northern first nations peoples. Her main interests include the prevention of violence against women and children, health and healing, and many opportunities to assist the WAWC board throughout any arts events.
As a community based organization, our work is completed in partnership with other non-profit organizations, First Nations Governments, the municipal and territorial governments, and national organizations.