Self Advocacy Webinars
Lupus Canada is happy to announce our 2021 Advocacy program. This program will consist of an informative and interactive series of webinars for all Canadians impacted by lupus. Each month we will offer a new topic. Please follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Linkedin to learn more about our upcoming webinars.
Tips For Being Your Own Best Advocate…Lived Experience With Abby Charles
On July 22nd we hosted our sixth Self-Advocacy webinar. Lupus Canada was joined by Abby Charles who presented “Tips For Being Your Own Best Advocate… Lived Experience With Abby Charles”. A video recording of the webinar is available below for viewing.
Abby Charles is a lupus warrior who serves as a Director at the Institute for Public Health Innovation (IPHI), The public health institute for Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia. In this role, Ms. Charles works with a variety of sectors and stakeholders including: Elected officials, health departments, planning agencies, and community-based organizations and other key stakeholders to design and implement policy, systems, and environmental changes aimed at improving public health.
With over 15 years’ experience as a public health practitioner, Ms. Charles provides expertise and oversight for an extensive portfolio of health equity-focused programs including grassroots public health workforce development, community health worker initiatives, training and technical assistance to promote racially equitable communities, health in all policies strategies, and multi-sector collaborative development to achieve public health transformation.
A dynamic speaker, trainer and facilitator, Ms. Charles offers workshops and technical assistance to organizations and coalitions throughout the United States to highlight the historic and present-day impact of structural racism and other forms of oppression on health inequities across populations and communities and the interconnected impact of the social and structural determinants of health (education, housing, transportation, where people live) on population health outcomes.. These workshops offer tools to improve health and racial equity in policies, systems, environments, practices and decision-making.
Prior to her role at IPHI, Ms. Charles served as Program Coordinator at the Women’s Collective, a nationally recognized organization providing care, prevention, and advocacy services for women, girls and their families living with and at risk for HIV in the Metropolitan DC area. At TWC, Ms. Charles built her experience in peer navigation, women’s health, gender-based violence and HIV.
Ms. Charles is appointed as an Adjunct Instructor of Clinical Research and Leadership at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences. She is a graduate of the George Washington University with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science and a Master of Public Health in Public Health. She presently serves on the Washington, DC Mayor’s Commission on Caribbean Community Affairs, the board of The Well Project, the Bishop Anstey High School Alumnae Association of Washington, DC, the Community Advisory Boards of the DC Center for AIDS Research and the GW Cancer Center, and serves as interim chair of the Trinidad and Tobago Diaspora Association Network.
Lupus and Nutrition
Our fifth Self-Advocacy Webinar took place on June 10th. Our guest speaker, Melissa Hemphill, a Holistic Nutritionist discussed Lupus and Nutrition. For a copy of Melissa’s presentation, please click here. A video recording of the webinar is available below for viewing.
Melissa’s passions are all things food-related. With a degree in Biochemistry from the University of Guelph, Melissa went on to pursue a diploma in Natural Nutrition and develop a career as a Holistic Nutritionist. Through learning all that she did about the importance of feeding our bodies the right fuel it became more and more obvious that it is our food system that is leading us to illness.
After moving to Revelstoke in 2006, Melissa became involved with the North Columbia Environmental Society and helped to create the first community garden through what was then a committee of the NCES called the Local Food Initiative. Melissa served as a member and the chair of this committee, then created the Coordinator position in 2014 and filled it for 18 months. She helped to establish the Revelstoke Local Food Initiative as its own society and continues on in a board member position. Melissa is currently the Food Security Coordinator with Community Connections (Revelstoke) Society and is working to implement recommendations from the Revelstoke Food Security Strategy to make Revelstoke a more food secure community.
Lupus Awareness with Minister Hajdu
Lupus Canada would like to thank Minister Patty Hajdu for taking time to speak with us at our Lupus Awareness Month Self-Advocacy Webinar. A video recording of the webinar is available below for viewing.
Minister of Health
Location: Thunder Bay—Superior North
The Honourable Patty Hajdu was first elected as the Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay—Superior North in 2015.
Minister Hajdu is a strong advocate for women’s rights, youth employment, and affordable housing.
Before entering politics, Minister Hajdu was the Executive Director of Shelter House Thunder Bay and a co-author of the Thunder Bay Drug Strategy. She also previously worked in public health and focused on drug policy, youth development, and homelessness.
She is a compassionate advocate for Thunder Bay—Superior North and all of Canada, believing that a more inclusive country benefits everyone. As Member of Parliament, she remains firmly focused on ensuring every Canadian has a fair shot at success.
Minister Hajdu is a graduate of Lakehead University and earned a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Victoria.
Mental Health and Lupus
Our third Advocacy Webinar – Mental Health and Lupus, took place on Thursday, April 29th. Janice LeBlanc, a Registered Psychotherapist, addressed topics such as ‘How lupus can impact mental health’, ‘What help and/or programs are available’, ‘How would a lupus patient advocate for themselves or a loved one living with lupus to ensure to get the help they require’ and ‘Coping strategies – how to help yourself’. A video recording of the webinar is available below for viewing.
Janice has over 20 years of clinical experience working with those who have experienced childhood trauma and abuse, motor vehicle accidents and domestic violence, as well as individuals who experience mental health challenges such as PTSD, depression and anxiety. Currently in private practice, she provides ongoing support to first responders and their families. She has extensive experience working with individuals with Special Needs such as ADHD, Learning Disabilities and Autism Spectrum Disorder. Janice has specialized training in Art Therapy, EMDR Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Cognitive Processing Therapy and is a national speaker on self care for professionals, anxiety in children and youth and coping with chronic illness. She works with all walks of life including children, youth, adults and seniors, and is also a retired Secondary School Educator.
Managing Your Finances
The ‘Managing Your Finances While Living With Lupus’ webinar took place on March 18th. Our guest speaker, Vikas Tiwari who is Lupus Canada’s Treasurer, is an experienced Wealth Management professional and currently manages an independent wealth advisory practice with clients based throughout North America. He established his educational foundations with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and advanced them through earning the Chartered Investment Manager (CIM) designation. For a copy of the Financial Management Toolkit mentioned by Vikas in his presentation, please click here. A video recording of the webinar is available below for viewing.
The ‘Advocacy 101’ webinar took place on February 18th. Our guest speaker, Thomas Simpson who is the Chair of Lupus Canada’s Advocacy Committee, discussed what is advocacy and how to become a successful self-advocate. For a copy of Thomas’ presentation, please click here. A video recording of the webinar is available below for viewing.