MEET THE TEAM

Executive Team

  • Rachel Kiddell-Monroe

    Executive Director

    Rachel Kiddell-Monroe is a lawyer, a humanitarian practitioner and an advocate. She is a Board Director at Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), a founding President of Universities Allied for Essential Medicines and a Professor of Practice at McGill University. Rachel believes putting people and their community first is key to creating a more humane, just, and fair society.

  • Samantha Poncabare

    Executive Assistant

    Samantha Poncabare holds a BA in International Development with a minor in International Relations and Environmental Sciences from McGill University. Previously, Samantha worked in the sales department of a startup, organized a course on Humanitarian Action at the McGill Summer Institute in Global Health and volunteered with SeeChange on fundraising and event planning.

  • Peter Saranchuk

    Medical Director

    Peter Saranchuk is a medical doctor with more than a dozen years of international experience with the humanitarian medical organization Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). In addition to performing HIV-TB clinical work in resource-limited settings, he has worked as a TB-HIV Advisor in MSF’s Southern African Medical Unit. He currently works in a Community Health Centre in southern Ontario.

  • Sumeet Sodhi

    Monitoring & Evaluation Coordinator

    Sumeet is a family physician in the Toronto Western Hospital Family Health Team, an Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Toronto, and the Academic Lead for the Indigenous Health Partners Program at the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto. Sumeet has led many global health initiatives, including indigenous health, diabetes, HIV, TB, primary care integration, community-based programming and chronic illness care.

  • Tanya Ayala

    Communications Officer

    A storyteller at heart, Tanya Ayala is a Communications Consultant and holds a BA in Political Science with a minor in Professional Writing from Concordia University. She also holds a Graduate Diploma in Paralegal Studies from Conestoga College and is pursuing a Graduate Diploma in Public Relations & Communications Management from McGill University. She previously worked in the private sector as a Sales Manager, Recruiter, and Internal Communications Specialist.

TB Initiative Team

  • Malcolm Ranta

    Local Director

    Malcolm Ranta is the Executive Director of the Ilisaqsivik Society. He also manages the Ittaq Heritage and Research Center and the social enterprise Tukumaaq Incorporated. Malcolm has years of experience working in Nunavut in government and non-profit sectors. He has worked in public health and community development with remote and urban Indigenous communities. Malcolm is also a wannabe weekend hunter.

  • Sheila Enook

    TB Project Coordinator

    Sheila Enook has a business degree from Queen’s School of Business. She worked for the Government of Nunavut as Manager of Finance with Arctic College and Director of Finance for the Department of Health. She is a member of Regional TB Committee. In her free time, Sheila makes traditional hunting equipment and goes out to her cabin or hunting.

COVID-19 Initiative Team

  • Jessica Farber

    Community Readiness Coordinator

    Jessica Farber works with community leaders to organize, prepare and respond to COVID-19 using the CommunityFirst COVID-19 Roadmap. She has experience in outreach, advocacy and project coordination with forced migrants and asylum seekers in Montreal and Mexico. Jessica holds a B.A. in International Development from McGill University.

  • Megan Corbett-Thompson

    Community Readiness Outreach Coordinator

    Megan Corbett-Thompson holds a BSc in Ecological Determinants of Health from McGill University. She has gained diverse experience in protection work, community mobilization and environmental health promotion alongside NGOs in Latin America. Megan is committed to community empowerment and upholding the dignity of all persons.

  • Violeta Chapela

    Medical Advisor for Community Health

    Violeta Chapela is a doctor with humanitarian experience in the areas of sexual violence, migration, sexual and reproductive health, mental health for victims of violence and primary healthcare in exclusion and war zones. Violeta also has an interest in strengthening community networks from a gender perspective.

Board of Directors

  • Denis Blanchette

    President and Treasurer

    Denis Blanchette has spent 30 years bringing community first. He worked with communities in Africa and Latin America. After working at the Supreme Court of Canada, he is now a partner at one of Canada’s leading law firms supporting Indigenous communities. Denis is recognized as a leading practitioner in Indigenous law in Best Lawyers in Canada 2020.

  • Madlen Nash

    Board Secretary

    Madlen Nash holds an Honours BSc in Microbiology and Immunology and an MSc in Epidemiology, both from McGill University. She has led several global health research studies in India and authored academic articles in leading scientific journals. Madlen is a founding member of SeeChange and currently works as a Research and Advocacy Associate at AIDS-Free World.

  • Jasper Monroe-Blanchette

    Member

    Jasper Monroe-Blanchette studies Forestry at Cégep de Chicoutimi. Through his studies, he is working towards getting involved with Indigenous communities in relation to forest management. Jasper loves wild places and finds his calling in mountains and forests. He is a yoga teacher and finds his peace in practicing traditional forms, which include qigong and kung fu as well as yoga.

  • Michelle Osry

    Member

    Over the past 25 years, Michelle Osry has worked across North America, Europe and Africa as an academic and investment banker She is now a partner at Deloitte Canada, where she leads the firm’s Family Enterprise Consulting practice. Michelle is Vice Chair of the Family Enterprise Xchange, a Canadian organization dedicated to empowering enterprising families and their advisors.

  • Carol Devine

    Member

    Carol Devine was a founding member of SeeChange and is a Humanitarian Affairs Advisor with Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Canada. Carol was a 2016 fellow of the Ecologic Institute’s Arctic Summer College. She is a member of the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research Humanities Expert Group and a Community Fellow at the Dahdaleh Institute for Global Health Research.

Board of Advisors

  • Jennifer Furin

    Dr. Jennifer Furin is an infectious diseases clinician and medical anthropologist who has spent 25 years working to address TB and HIV in vulnerable populations. She is a lecturer at Harvard Medical School and serves as a consultant for a variety of organizations to support person-centered care. She specializes in the care of children with drug-resistant forms of TB.

  • Daniel Solomon

    Daniel Soloman is a businessman and trustee of the Heathside Charitable Trust which is a family charity based in London, United Kingdom. The charity funds projects both in the UK and overseas.

  • Grace Yang

    Grace Yang is the Chief Trouble Maker at TEDxMontrealWomen, curating and encouraging speakers to step outside of their comfort zones to deliver their most compelling talks. She leads a dynamic team of volunteers and fosters a creative culture where everyone can grow together. Previously, Grace worked in the investment industry on both the buy and sell sides of the Street.

  • Stephen Lewis

    Stephen Lewis is co-director of the international advocacy organization AIDS-Free World and co-chair of the board of the Stephen Lewis Foundation. He has previously served as the UN Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa, as Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF, and as Canada’s Ambassador to the United Nations.

  • Courtney Howard

    Dr. Courtney Howard is an Emergency Physician in Canada’s subarctic, and board President of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE). She was the first author on the 2017 and 2018 Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change Briefings for Canadian Policymakers, as well as being the 2018 International Policy Director for the Lancet Countdown.

  • Jerry Natanine

    Jerry Natanine was born and raised in Clyde River, Nunavut. He has been working with Ilisaqsivik for several years. He completed Ilisaqsivik’s Our Life’s Journey: Inuit Counsellor Training Program. Jerry has held many leadership roles in Clyde River, including Chair of the Hunters and Trappers Organization. Jerry is currently Mayor of Clyde River for a second time.

  • Igah Sanguya

    Igah Sanguya currently sits on the Board of the Ilisaqsivik Society and serves as the Community Health Representative of Clyde River, Nunavut. In the past, Igah has also served on the Board of Directors of Pauktuutit and the Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network.

  • Georgia White

    Georgia White is a Strategy and Policy Associate at the international advocacy organization AIDS-Free World. Over the past decade, Georgia has worked in the United States, Cambodia and her home country of Australia as an advocate and policy expert on health and social justice issues.

Interns & Volunteers

  • Béatrice Petitclerc

    Volunteer

    Beatrice is a student in the Law-MBA co-op program at the Université de Sherbrooke, with an interest in humanitarian and environmental issues, as well as Indigenous law. Previously, Beatrice has travelled globally for humanitarian and scientific projects. She completed an internship in Iqaluit through College Sainte-Anne de Lachine, as well as a contract with the Government of Nunavut, focused on long-term health in the region.

  • Emanuelle Lyons

    Communications Intern

    Emanuelle is a recent graduate of McGill University, holding a Graduate Diploma in Public Relations & Communications Management. She also holds a BMus in Opera Performance from the University of British Columbia where her passion for communications and storytelling began. A recipient of the McGill Integrated Internship Award, Emanuelle is thrilled for the opportunity to work with SeeChange.

Partners

  • Ilisaqsivik Society

    Community initiated and community-based Inuit organization located in Clyde River, Nunavut. Ilisaqsivik Society is dedicated to promoting community wellness by providing space, resources, and programming that helps families and individuals find healing and develop their strengths. Ilisaqsivik Society is a Canadian registered charity and brings two decades of Inuit-based experience in training and community empowerment.

    Learn more about the Ilisaqsivik Society

DONATE

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PARTNER

Together with our partners, we co-create innovative solutions to health and social challenges. We invite community-led organizations to reach out to explore how SeeChange Initiative can support your work.

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VOLUNTEER

We always welcome passionate, motivated, and skilled volunteers to join us! If you have talent and time to share, we would love to hear from you.

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Jun 21, 2020

Clyde River, October 2019: A Photo Story by Danny Solomon

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Words and Photos byDaniel Solomon

The charity of which I am a trustee, The Heathside Charitable Trust, helped Rachel fund the setting-up of See Change Initiative in 2018. Rachel and I have been great friends for many years since we met at university in 1984 and her commitment to humanitarian causes is as strong now as it was then. So when she explained she wanted to set-up a charity to partner with and help the Innuit communities of Nunavut, our charity jumped at the opportunity to help. Rachel’s plan to prevent and eradicate TB from these communities soon took on a life of its own and SeeChange Initiative has flourished ever since owing to her hard work and to its community-based approach which successfully empowers local people and organisations in preventing and treating TB in their own communities (and covid).

 

So in October 2019, when it was still possible to fly on planes and travel to remote parts of the world, I did just that and visited Clyde River in Nunavut to see for myself the impact SeeChange Initiative has had on the remarkable community of Clyde River. As well as Rachel, I travelled with Sophie de Caen of the Pathy Family Foundation, a major funder of See Change, and Madlen Nash, who worked with See Change. This my photo story.

I was told that every journey to the Arctic starts at a Montreal supermarket. Buying food to take to there is a delicate balancing act of nutrition, weight and cost. Rachel and Madlen are both old hands at this and are seen here discussing the relative merits of various deserts, a vital part of any Arctic food plan.

On the journey north from Montreal, one begins to get a feel for the vastness of Canada and the remoteness of Baffin Island. The first snow had already fallen on Iqaluit, the capital of Nunavut, when we landed. Iqaluit is located in southern Baffin Island and is the gateway to the more remote Inuit communities located further north on the island, the fifth largest in the world and twice the size of the UK, my home.

The following morning we had a chance to look around Iqaluit as it was lit-up in golden autumn light.

The northern sky did not mess about at sunset either and gave us the full palette of colours.

We flew north the following day and were picked-up at Clyde River airport by Sheila Enook, a resident of Clyde River who works for See Change and she drove us into town. The road was dusty as the first snow of winter had yet to arrive. That, however, was not to last.

Sophie and Madlen (I think!) walking on an Arctic beach near Sheila’s cabin which is a short distance from Clyde River. Many Inuit build cabins a short distance from the towns they live in to be closer to the wilderness, the likes of which I had never seen before.

Rachel on the beach under a herring-bone sky.

Sheila in her cabin which she was just finishing building. Like many Inuit, Sheila feels a strong connection to the land and she spends as much time as possible at her cabin enjoying its peace and tranquillity.

An impromptu meeting is held in the cabin. Rachel, Madlen and Sophie listen to Sheila as she explains her thoughts on how best to prevent and eradicate TB in the Inuit communities.

After our meeting, a short stroll from the cabin reveals the beauty of the scenery.

Back in Clyde River, a hunting party return with a narwhal in tow. Hunting is a way of life for the Inuit and the source of most of their food.

A hunter on the edge of the ice. The children watch and pick-up the skills they’ll need to go hunting when they are old enough.

Madlen was very keen to get her hands on an Arctic char and like her I’m very glad she did. A most tasty fish indeed.

Robert Kautuk is a local photographer who has won awards for his shots of the Arctic and the Inuit who hunt there. I spent a morning looking at his fantastic photos and videos, which not only provide a valuable record of Inuit hunting skills and culture but are also beautifully captured.

He can be followed on Instagram @robertkautuk

We met with The Ilisaqsivik Society, a local non-profit organisation dedicated to promoting community wellness in Clyde River and other Inuit communities on Baffin Island. See Change have a close relationship with them…

A blizzard has come so Malcolm, Rachel and Madlen peer through the window to see if our plane out of Clyde River is able to land and pick us up. This depends on whether the pilot can see the runway and, on this occasion, he couldn’t which made me jump for joy as the prospect of a 5 hour flight in an Arctic blizzard was not one I was relishing one bit.

However, our now extended stay in Clyde allowed us to see the start of winter arrive which didn’t seem to bother the school children too much.

The welcome and hospitality I received in Nunavut is something I will always remember. There was an abundance of warmth and kindness and the Inuit sense of humour had me laughing from the beginning to the end.

The dogs stay outside for winter. Rather them than me!

After several days of snow, the sun rises on to a new looking Clyde.

Hunters preparing to go out

The weather is perfect for our flight out of Clyde which makes one passenger very happy indeed.

And so ends a truly wonderful trip and thanks to Sophie, Madlen and Rachel for being such lovely travelling companions. I am already thinking of ways of how to get back to Baffin and after nearly 3 months of lockdown, I would give quite a lot to see those huge northern skies again.