We are pleased to announce the incoming young leaders for the 2020-21 Pathy Foundation Fellowship at Coady International Institute.

The 12-month fellowship provides community-focused experiential learning opportunities for graduating students of McGill UniversityQueen’s UniversityUniversity of Ottawa and St. Francis Xavier University. Applicants submit a self-designed initiative proposal to work with a community with which they have a connection, to foster sustainable positive social change in Canada and around the world. The Pathy Family Foundation supports each fellow with funding of up to $40,000.

The eight fellows in the incoming cohort will attend skill-building sessions and planning workshops at Coady Institute before commencing the nine-month community phase. Fellows will work with community partners to implement a broad diversity of projects, from developing computer literacy for newcomers in Moncton, to tackling mental health stigma through participatory arts in Malawi, to enhancing environmental awareness and action in Ghana.


Meet the 2020-21 Fellows

In metropolitan areas, conflictual conditions are oftentimes present between the environment and urbanism. My initiative, Environmental Community through Youth, will seek to create a network of youth that tackles waste disposal issues (particularly plastic) in the Ablekuma neighborhood, located in Accra, Ghana.

Meriem Mezdour

Environmentally aware community through youth, with Global Alliance for Development Foundation (GADEF) in Accra, Ghana

Through workshops and one-on-one training, my proposed learning centre will focus on building and strengthening essential technology and learning skills amongst newcomers in the Greater Moncton Area that will support success in all kinds of personal and educational pathways by establishing a solid foundation of technology awareness and positive learning skills.

Daniela Gallardo

Developing computer literacy for newcomers, with the newcomer community of the Greater Moncton Area in Moncton, Canada

My initiative is an educational and curriculum-based approach to increasing awareness and adaptability of climate change and sustainability in Mombasa, Kenya. Using local and indigenous ideas of sustainability, I will work with local artisans, teachers, curriculum experts, and other stakeholders to create a variety of educational resources that empowers schoolteachers to incorporate sustainability in their curriculum.

Raj Birgi

Sustainability-based education resources for teachers, with primary and secondary schools in Mombasa, Kenya

Creativity and the arts engage people on a human level and are traditionally the way that stories are told in many cultures, including in Malawi. My initiative will work with college students in Zomba to use participatory arts to break down stigma surrounding mental health, while also using the arts as an outlet for students experiencing mental health challenges. By training student champions to engage in conversations about mental health with their peers through music, drama, poetry, and other participatory arts, the lines of conversation can be opened in a non-threatening way.

Sam Dignam

Tackling mental health stigma through participatory arts, with the Art and Global Health Centre Africa in Zomba, Malawi

In 2016, I founded Step Above Stigma – a Queen’s University based, student-run charity that raises awareness and funds for mental health organizations across Canada. We sell socks that proudly display the name of our organization and an adapted semi-colon to symbolize solidarity for those who struggle with mental health. All funds raised through our sock sales and outreach events are used to advocate for improved accessibility, increased visibility, and reducing the stigma surrounding mental health and wellness on campus.

Ampai Thammachack

Raising awareness and funds for mental health, with the Queen's University student community in Kingston, Canada

My initiative focuses on researching, developing, and piloting a model and framework for a sustainable leadership and mentorship program for young racialized women (YRW) between the ages of 15 to 25 in Ottawa. I would like to combine the lived experience insights of women of colour with professional leadership development support to create culturally appropriate leadership training, mentorship, and networking for young racialized women (YRW) in Ottawa.

Nayaelah Siddiqui

Culturally inclusive leadership training for women, with “Empower'em”, racialized women, and women of colour in Ottawa, Canada

X-Project is a student-run society at StFX University that offers group educational assistance, recreational opportunities, and youth leadership training for Afro-Nova Scotian and Mi’kmaq youth. My initiative will work with X-Project to educate and train a team of Afro-Nova Scotian and Mi’kmaq youth to create physical literacy programming for other youth in their own communities using a youth-centered model and culturally relevant practices with a greater aim to reduce inequities in health and education.

Bridget Way-Brackenbury

Physical literacy youth leadership project, with X-Project in Antigonish, Canada

Along with the Waban-Aki Nation, I will work towards creating a community archives center. This center will help the Abenaki become independent from other external institutions and help further develop a sense of autonomy by preserving their collective memories within their own terms.

Dominique Robichaud

Waban-Aki Nation and community archives, with Waban-Aki Nation, Odanak and Wolinak in Canada

As the 2019-20 cohort nears the end of its community phase, they will return to Coady Institute at StFX University in May to complete a debrief; when fellows will evaluate personal and professional growth, outcomes from the community phase, next steps, and visioning of possibilities in their journey as change-makers.

The Pathy Fellowship welcomes a new cohort of fellows in June each year. The incoming cohort will arrive for their initial on-campus workshop, Foundations for Community Change, on June 8, 2020. To learn more about the fellowship and incoming cohort visit pathyfellowship.com or follow Pathy Foundation Fellowship on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.