Message from the Vice-President

Dear friends,

These are exciting times at Coady International Institute as we acknowledge several milestones in the coming months. We are marking this year as the 100th anniversary of the Antigonish Movement and the 90th anniversary of the Extension Department while, in 2019, Coady will enter its 60th year. The principles of the Antigonish Movement are alive and well. The Extension Department and Coady remain committed to accompanying community leaders in Nova Scotia, in Canada, and around the world to address local issues and lead social and economic change for the betterment of their communities.

This past January, the Institute launched Coady Connects Graduate Learning Network, an exciting initiative that will help us accompany past and future graduates. Our institutional strategy, "Toward a Full and Abundant Life for All, 2017-2022”  continues to guide us as we examine our educational programs. Anthony Scoggins, Coady’s new Director of Education Programs, and staff are building on the strengths of Coady’s experiences and understanding of our changing world by preparing new approaches to our educational programs. Our 2019 roster of on-campus programs are posted where you may note the addition of new certificate programs. Stay tuned for announcements regarding our 2020 programs later this year.

I encourage you to learn more in this newsletter and online and to get in touch with Dr. Wendy Kraglund Gauthier who can guide you in registering for Coady Connects to help us continue knowledge-sharing.

Enjoy this edition of the Coady Connection. I look forward to hearing updates from you, as well as your ideas and of contributions you may wish to make to future editions.

Dr. June Webber
Vice President
Coady International Institute, St. Francis Xavier University and Extension 

Coady grads organize ABCD Imbizo in South Africa

From February 21-23, 180 people from 23 different countries came together in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, to share insights and learning of their experiences with asset-based and citizen-led development (ABCD). The ABCD Imbizo (Zulu word for gathering) was organized by more than 20 Coady graduates from South Africa and included 40 alumni from Haiti, Vietnam, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Indigenous communities in Canada, Ghana, Zambia, India, as well as 11 staff members from Coady and Extension, and two OceanPath youth fellows. 

Presentations ranged from asset-based approaches to working on issues such as economic and social development, human rights, disability, health, youth, evaluation, women’s empowerment, community-university engagement, Indigenous development, organizational development, local governance, corporate social investment, climate change, financial sustainability, and several inspiring personal testimonies.

Masters of Ceremonies were two powerful women leaders, Sadi Motsuenyane (the incoming Coady Chair of Social Justice) and Dee Brooks, Director of the Jeder Institute in Australia.

Coady graduates are currently working on a plan for the next International ABCD conference. In the meantime, the Bank of I.D.E.A.S has announced an ABCD Festival to be held in Goa, India in January, 2019.

Education program to focus on accompaniment, collaboration

Following the unveiling of Coady’s Strategic Plan in 2017, an exciting new set of educational programs is now being prepared for launch. The Coady’s flagship program, the Diploma in Development Leadership is being re-configured to include (from 2020) the opportunity for post-residence accompaniment. This option will enable participants to continue their learning activities with Coady once they leave Antigonish and are back at work with their sponsoring organizations, in their home communities.

“We are developing a menu of different learning activities and mechanisms,” Anthony Scoggins, Coady’s new Director of Education Programs, says. “This will include coaching and mentoring support for individuals and groups, access to webinars and on-line courses, engagement in shared learning platforms, and more. The institute has always worked to keep in touch with our grads after they leave Antigonish, but this initiative will give substance and meaning to our long standing commitment to both on-going learning and solidarity.”

Coady will reduce the number of short-term courses being offered on campus at StFX, and focus its certificate offerings on its three core thematic areas: Strengthening Inclusive Economies; Promoting Accountable Democracies and Building Resilient Communities

Many of the popular short courses will be offered off-campus in collaboration with local training centres and partners. The inspiration for many of these changes has emerged from Coady’s growing portfolio of educational activities with women, Indigenous leaders and youth.

Upcoming courses

Coady is now accepting applications for a variety of courses being held in 2018/2019 including Citizen-Led Accountability: Strategy and Tools to take place in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania July 2 - 13, 2018. Please note the application deadline for this course is May 28, 2018. Read the complete list of courses here

Alumni Profiles

Sweet rewards from ABCD project

Name: Robert Mutisi
Country: Zimbabwe
Coady Connection: Coady Diploma (2016); Livelihoods and Markets Certificate, Gordon Institute of Business Science, South Africa (2017)
Current Organization: Manica Boards and Doors
Current Project/Work: I work as a Forestry Executive and run beekeeping projects with communities.

1. How is it making a difference?

The project has attracted many people in my community, both men and women. The approach to use locally available assets in my community has been embraced by many people as they work hard towards improving their livelihoods and well-being. Many families now generate income that enables them to pay fees for programs that better the lives of their children.

2. How are you applying your learning from the Coady?

I always look at my community from the ABCD perspective and I am convinced my community is excellently endowed with natural resources that can be used to generate income. Before seeking outside assistance, I always mobilize locally available assets to improve livelihoods. This comes through engaging and listening to other people. I frequently use the leaky bucket analogue to check the performance of local economies.

3. What changes have you seen in your own community since coming to Coady and then taking part in the certificate program?

Many people, including school children, are receiving training in beekeeping as a livelihood option. Our local press has been reporting on our beekeeping project and sharing our experiences with others through various articles. Many people are excited and want to know more about the honey value chain before they start on the project.

4. Who, or what, inspires you in your work?

My passion towards conservation work and making my community to live better. I am inspired by a wide range of locally available assets within my community which have never been put to full use in generating income that can change peoples’ lives. There is a huge potential for my community and country to realize social, economic and environmental benefits from beekeeping.

5. What are your plans for the future?

To make sure Zimbabwe makes use of the vast forested land, national parks and land under agriculture are used in honey production. This honey must meet the local/export market demands and quality specifications. I want each homestead in rural areas to have at least two beehives and want to offer beekeeping courses at primary, secondary, college and university level.


IWCL grad wins emerging leader award

Name: Caitlin Tolley, Kitigan-Zibi, Quebec
Coady Connection: Indigenous Women in Community Leadership Class (2015)
Current Organization: Royal Bank of Canada Law Group in Toronto, Ont.  
Current Project/Work: Completing my Articling requirements for the Law Society of Ontario and studying for the Ontario bar exams.

1. It has been three years since you were at Coady, what have you been up to?

I graduated from the University of Ottawa – Faculty of Law in June 2017. Afterwards, I moved to Toronto to complete my Articles with a top five Canadian bank and an international law firm on Bay Street. I have kept myself busy with speaking engagements (including before the Standing Senate Committee on Aboriginal Peoples), and I spent a month in Hawaii learning about Native Hawaiian Leadership on a Fulbright Canada Special Foundation Fellowship.

You can see more of my adventures here:

2. You won Public Policy Forum’s Emerging Leader award, what was that experience like?

As a young Indigenous woman who has spent countless hours reading through legal textbooks and case law, the highlight of my evening was meeting the former Chief Justice of Canada, Beverley McLachlin.

After I received the award, I spoke about the importance of being accountable to the communities that we come. The audience consisted more than 1,000 people in the room. It took me about a week, or so, to think about my choice of words and the message that I wanted to get across. I wanted my remarks to be meaningful and memorable.

You can view my remarks here:

3. Who, or what, inspires you?

I am inspired by lawyers who continue to maintain their culture, identity, and way of life, despite working in a legal environment. I am especially inspired by the work of the Hon. Senator Murray Sinclair, who continues to balance and maintain his professional responsibilities and dedication to his community.

I am also encouraged by the work of Senator Kim Pate. I took her Prison Law class during law school, and I got the opportunity to do work in a women’s prison. Senator Pate pushes the boundaries in Canadian society, and I am could not be more grateful for her mentorship.

I am completely privileged that both of them (Senator Pate and Senator Sinclair) were able to attend my law school convocation.

4. How are you applying what you learned at the Coady in your daily work?

I utilize different skill sets that I honed at Coady for different aspects of my work. Some of the skills that I have been able to apply include: community facilitation, project management and budgeting, report writing, and alternative dispute resolution. I made amazing friends and nurtured connections with incredible women that I would have otherwise had not met if it were not for the Indigenous Women in Community Leadership Program.

5. Where do you see yourself and community in five years?

I hope to be practicing as a lawyer in a law firm that does corporate and aboriginal law. I hope to be making a difference in the lives of Indigenous people in a meaningful way. I hope to apply my knowledge and skill set in a manner that effectively serves to create positive outcomes for Indigenous communities. I hope that when the next generation of youth in our communities see me, they see a warrior who will advocate for them. 


Graduate participates at Commission on the Status of Women at the United Nations

Name: Patricia Thomson, Carry The Kettle First Nations, Saskatchewan
Coady Connection: Indigenous Women in Community Leadership Class (2016)
Current Organization: Cowessess First Nation
Current Project/Work: Executive Director

1. Can you talk a little more about why you came to Coady?

I saw Coady as an opportunity to enhance my skills as a leader and learn to develop educationally but Coady helped me grow not only professionally and more importantly personally. I grew to understand myself, build confidence, gain strength, and courage to challenge barriers and obstacles I had in my life. I also built a strong women’s network that covered Canada. These women have taught me and supported me, I am grateful for the opportunity. 

2. How has your work evolved since taking part in IWCL?

I have completed my Masters of Administration and Leadership. I continue to challenge myself and have realized my capabilities. I am an Executive Director of First Nation community and now see opportunities that I believed for a long time belonged to others.  I have fewer limitations and more skills and experiences to share with others.

3. You recently took part in 62nd session of the Commission on the Status of Women at the United Nations, how did this come about?

Coady does a great job in connecting with former graduates, and I stay in touch, as a result of that connection. I applied to be a representative. I didn’t believe that I would be chosen, but I knew that if I didn’t try how I would even be considered. My passion is for my people, I love learning, teaching, and educating and I am learning to become a voice in a good, respectful, and nurturing way. I believe Indigenous women need to be empowered because I have experienced what it has done for me. 

4. What did you learn from that experience?

It was a humbling experience, to be in the presence of women who risk their lives for the betterment of women and to be accompanied by four other Indigenous women from Canada who have also given of themselves for others to learn. I was in awe of the passion and compassion of the women from all over the world. We were supported by Coady and staff members. Without them, we would not have had the opportunity. I am grateful for the experience to be supported, given a chance to speak on a global platform, and give on behalf of Indigenous women. I am proud to call the other woman whom I attended with my friends, my colleagues, and my teachers.

5. What is your vision for the future of your community?

I hope to be an asset to my community and to help build confidence in our youth in delivering a message that the future is what we choose it to be. To be a mentor, role model, and strong advocate by supporting and encouraging a change in the future of Indigenous girls and women. My hope is I will be a part of movement Carry the Kettle will support and build as a nation, one that will make a difference in our young women for the future.

Supporting Indigenous Women’s Leadership in Alberta

From April 9 to 13, 2018, Coady offered its first off-campus education program supporting Indigenous women leaders from Treaties 6, 7 and 8 Territories as well as from Metis Settlements. Led by co-facilitators Karri-Lynn Paul (Indigenous Women in Community Leadership, 2011; Coady Mentor) and Wyanne Smallboy-Wesley (Indigenous Women in Community Leadership, 2014), 19 women leaders focused on sharing their expertise and building their capacities to lead development initiatives in their communities. The program was hosted by Enoch Cree First Nation, and supported by Enoch Elder Irene Morin throughout the duration of the course. 

While the course was under way, Coady and Enoch Cree Nation also hosted a Grandmothers Gathering. The first of its kind, the participants in the gathering included 13 dynamic women Elders who discussed priorities for their communities and ways to best support women’s leadership going forward. The Grandmothers from the three Territories and Metis Settlements were also joined by Mi’kmaq Elder Mary (Hubba) Lafford who travelled from Paq’tnkek First Nation which is a neighbour to Coady and StFX University. Coady will now be looking to pilot both successful programs in other parts of the country, as well as offer a second course in Alberta over the coming year.

Field workers receive help with value chains

Photo courtesy of CLE

Coady Senior Program Staff, Yogesh Ghore, spent part of April in Haiti with Cle Cle Haiti Haiti (Haitian Center for Leadership and Excellence) to co-facilitate a field-based master trainer program along with Coady graduates, Johnny Celestin (Livelihoods and Markets 2017 and ABCD 2015) and Max Prosper (ABCD 2015 and Action Research for Citizen-Led Change 2014).Building on the collaboration between Coady Institute and CLE, to strengthen the local leadership in Haiti, the program was aimed at improving the participants' ability to strategically work and improve the regional value chains. In addition to the classroom sessions the program included field visits to local markets and stakeholders to understand opportunities using Coady's Producer-led Value Chain Analysis methodology.

Participants included local and municipal government staff, leaders from farmer producer organizations, smallholder producers and entrepreneurs, and staff from local and international Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). To see Celestin's and Prosper's Stories of Change go to and

New portal helps graduates share learning experiences

Coady Connects Graduate Learning Network ( launched in January 2018 as part of Coady’s commitment to on-going learning and accompaniment. Open to all Coady graduates, the space enhances their capacity and ability to share, use, and apply community-driven, asset-based approaches within organizations, communities, and countries.

This is being achieved through virtual networks of exchange and support among graduates at the local, national, and international levels. These networks, or nodes, also provide on-going learning initiatives to augment knowledge and skills. Learning nodes include: Asset Based Community Development (ABCD), Accountable Democracies, Strengthening Local Economies, Resilient Communities, Youth Leaders, Coady Library, Coady help, and all Coady graduates.

If you are a graduate and would like to know how to login to use this learning resource, contact

Coady Connects webinar schedule

May 17, 10:00am (ADT)
Community Resilience
David Fletcher, Senior Program Staff, Coady International Institute

June 5, 2:00pm (ADT)
Creating Communities of Practice in Digital Spaces
Wendy Kraglund-Gauthier, Manager, Networks and Ongoing Learning, Coady International Institute

June 27, 9:00am (ADT)
How to Build a Women's Movement
Eileen Alma, Associate Director, International Women’s Leadership Centre, Coady International Institute, with the 2018 Global Change Leaders Class

July 17, 8:00am (ADT)
Connecting Producers to Markets: What We Are Learning from Local Contexts
Yogesh Ghore, Senior Program Staff, Coady International Institute

August 14, 10:00am (ADT)
Learning from Stories of Change
Eric Smith, Monitoring and Evaluation Analyst, Coady International Institute

September 6, 2:00pm (ADT)
Best Practices for Affordable Web Design
Ashley Bouchie, Coordinator, Systems and Technology, Coady International Institute

October 23, 8:30am (ADT)
Multi-stakeholder Partnerships
Anuj Jain, Senior Project Specialist and Shelagh Savage, Associate Director Partnerships and Organizational Learning, Coady International Institute with the Fall 2018 Re-thinking Partnership class

December 11, 10:00am (ADT)
Social Network Analysis
Eric Smith, Monitoring and Evaluation Analyst, Coady International Institute

*All webinars are in Atlantic Daylight Time (ADT).

Learning from Stories of Change

Empowering street girls and promoting democracy in Nepal. Engaging youth to develop markets in Zambia. Creating inclusive business models in Bangladesh. These are three Stories of Change about how Coady International Institute graduates are learning and using their knowledge to create positive social change.

Coady's Learning from Stories of Change: An Internal Evaluation Study set out to answer, how do Coady's education programs foster learning? And, how are Coady graduates using their enhanced knowledge, attitudes, and skills to contribute to positive social change?

During the four-year study, more than 350 alumni shared their stories of change and helped analyze their own feedback.

Learn more

Testimonial Videos

LSC on Coady Connects

Welcoming the 2018 Coady Chair in Social Justice

Mfalatsane Pricillah (Sadi) Motsuenyane has been named the seventh Coady Chair of Social Justice, and will arrive on campus this fall.

Motsuenyane is the former Chief Director of Sustainable Livelihoods with the Department of Social Development for the Government of South Africa. A member of Coady’s Advisory body and a graduate of Coady’s Asset-based and Citizen-led Development (ABCD) and Livelihoods and Markets certificates, Motsuenyane has a longstanding relationship with Coady, and is a passionate ABCD practitioner.

Born on a farm into a family of entrepreneurs and community developers, Motsuenyane now has more than 50 years of community development experience.

Like Moses Coady and Jimmy Tompkins, Motsuenyane has been helping people in her own country study their social and economic situation and share ideas for pooling resources and improving their livelihoods collectively, allowing them to earn more income and take more control of the local economy. She has facilitated restorative justice dialogues in strife-torn communities to promote healing amongst perpetrators and victims of social injustice; these dialogues created a platform for collective discovery, recovery, and utilization of human and material assets with newly found mutual dignity and respect.

Motsuenyane holds a Master’s in Public Administration and Development Management from the University of Stellenbosch. Her previous work experience includes roles with Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), Agricultural Research Council, and Agricor. Since her retirement in December 2017, she has been completing her PhD at the University of the Western Cape, including her thesis titled, “Exploring the impact of asset-based thinking as an alternative approach to unleash the generative capacity of social grants in South Africa.”

For updates and related events, visit our website or Facebook page.

2017 Katherine Fleming International Development Award

Recipient: Peggy Namadi Sakam,  Regional Coordinator
Coast Kenya Alliance for Advancement of Children

About Peggy Namadi Saka:

"I came to the Coady Institute to understand my role as a leader in helping communities chart their own destiny. I hope to gain new knowledge and skills as I engage in lectures and with leaders from all cultures of the world."

KAACR is a national NGO whose mandate is to monitor the implementation and dissemination of various laws protecting children in the country through advocacy, research, training, networking, and community forums. As a change maker and facilitator, I sensitize the target group on child laws and lobby for implementation and dissemination of laws on children. I advocate for budget allocation and increase on essential child services by government, run a child rights network and establish child rights forum in schools where children's voices can be heard.

About the Katherine Fleming International Development Award: The Katherine Fleming International Development Award was established in 2000 in memory of StFX alumna Katie Fleming (1963-1999) who dedicated her life's work to social justice and overcoming child poverty in Africa. Organized by her classmates (classes of 1984 - 1986), the award grants a bursary each year to a deserving female student from Africa to attend the Coady International Institute's Diploma in Development Leadership.

Coady graduates sharing learning on Participedia

Coady International Institute is proud to form partnership with Participedia, a collaborative platform in support of participatory politics and governance around the world. Through this partnership, Coady graduates are publishing Case Studies about their own work with support from Coady staff.

Read more about the work of Coady’s graduates:

Enhancing People's Participation in Local Radio in Nepal
Bhumiraj Chapagain (Diploma in Development Leadership, 2015; Coady Fellowship, 2018)

Persons with Cerebral Palsy Self-Mobilising for Meaningful Participation in Uganda
Peter Ochieng (Diploma in Development Leadership, 2016; Coady Fellowship, 2018)

Omaar: Civic Education to Mobilize Youth in Community Engagement in Zakazik (Sharquia, Egypt)
Aliaa Saber Hussein (Diploma in Development Leadership, 2016)

Citizen Observers: Social Accountability in Nigeria’s Judicial Sector
Barbara Shitnaan Maigari (Citizen-Led Accountability: Strategies & Tools 2016; Coady Fellowship, 2018)

The Women’s Advisory Platform: Promoting Gender-inclusive Governance in Juaboso District (Ghana)
Patricia Blankson Akakpo (Diploma in Development Leadership, 2015)

Seeking the Meaningful Inclusion of People with Disabilities: the PATH Process at L’Arche Antigonish (Nova Scotia)
Asia van Buuren (Oceanpath Fellowship, 2015)

Engaging Youth in Municipal Youth Policy Development (Santa, Northwest Cameroon),
Patience Agwenjang (Diploma in Development Leadership, 2014)

The Democracy Project: Youth Participation and Democratic Education (Burnaby, British Columbia)
Jannika Nyberg (Oceanpath Fellowship, 2015)

El-kfoor Village Community Committees (El-Minia, Upper Egypt)
Hany Ghaly (Diploma in Development Leadership, 2016)


Former Director of Coady appointed to Canadian Senate

Congratulations to Coady’s former Vice-President, Mary Coyle, on being appointed to the Senate of Canada by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

“A long-time champion for women’s leadership, gender equality, and the rights of Indigenous Peoples, Mary Coyle has forged a distinguished career in the post-secondary education and non-profit sectors, with a focus on international and local development,” said the announcement from the Prime Minister’s Office. Read more about Senator Mary Coyle.

Alumni in the news

Simone Cavanaugh (Oceanpath, 2017) was named the youngest recipient of the Laurie Normand-Starr Award - a humanitarian award that commemorates Normand-Starr for her efforts toward ending child hunger.

P. Mike Jurry (Diploma in Development Leadership, 2008) was elected in the 54th Legislature of the Liberian Parliament, representing, Harper District #1, Maryland County. He’s using his role as a representative lawmaker to address issues of ritualistic killings in his region.

Prakash Koirala (Microfinance for Financial Inclusion, 2017), Director of Finlit Nepal Pvt. Ltd, was recently awarded "Best Financial Inclusion or Outreach Initiative - Highly Commended" at the 2017 Financial Innovation Awards, based in London, England.

Patricia Thomson, (Indigenous Women in Community Leadership, 2017) was one member of a group of Coady graduates invited to speak at the NGO Committee on the Status of Women conference in New York, USA.

Devon Fiddler (Indigenous Women in Community Leadership, 2012) featured in Flow Magazine to discuss her fashion business, SheNative. "I want to create a different narrative (for Indigenous women)," Devon says, "to showcase (our) success stories and to inspire other women."

Nadine Bernard (Indigenous Women in Community Leadership, 2017) in the Cape Breton Post with her community project, Slow Cooked Dreams.

Shaiju Chacko (Diploma in Development Leadership, 2011) hosted StFX University's Academic Vice-President and Provost, Kevin Wamsley, during his first visit to India. (Photo available of visit)

Adepeju Jaiyeoba (Global Change Leaders, 2013; Coady Fellowship, 2018) of Brown Button Foundation is Delivering Hope to Mothers

Baldwin Spencer (Diploma in Development Leadership, 1968), former Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, has retired from politics and gave his final speech to parliament in February as reported in the Antigua Observer.

Did you know?

During 2018 and 2019, Coady will mark a few significant anniversaries connected to the Antigonish Movement and its response to the poverty afflicting farmers, fishers, miners and other disadvantaged groups in Eastern Canada. Building on these experiences and on contemporary developmental practices, Coady continues to provide programs that promote education, innovation, group action and sustainable economic activities by building resilient communities, strengthening inclusive economies, and promoting accountable democracies with a focus on women, youth, and Indigenous leaders. Outlined below are a few milestone moments in the history of the Antigonish Movement:

1913-14 - priests and some lay people within the Diocese of Antigonish engaged in a campaign of letter writing and public meetings intended to promote economic development that came to be called the Antigonish Forward Movement.

1918 - a column entitled "For the People" written by Father Jimmy Tompkins and a group of writers he recruited appeared in the Antigonish Casket. Educational Conferences (a series of three annual meetings of diocesan priests) touching upon rural education and extension work began.

1928 - Moses Coady establishes StFX Extension the unique and community focused work of StFX became known worldwide as the Antigonish Movement.

1959 - Coady International Institute established with mandate to train leaders from around the world in the principles and practice of a people-based and citizen-led approach to development.