Over the last four weekends, we had the pleasure of spending time with a group of 10 powerful young women of colour. Our second cohort came together each week, and together, we shared our knowledge and experience. Learn more about these awesome individuals in the bios below.
We started a new micro-grants program, where Future participants could apply the knowledge they learned in the program and use it to fund their own projects.
Three projects were funded:
- An online database showcasing various writing opportunities for women and femmes of colour, launching September 2017 - led by Joy Gyamfi
- A showcase of ceramic sculptures highlighting female architects and raising funds for a local women's organization - led by Shanene Lau
- A workshop teaching women the fundamentals of tattoo art and technique - led by Jana Ghimire
These young women are now building new platforms for women in the arts, literary and creative sectors that support their communities. We are so excited to see these projects and collaborations come to life.
And finally, we have nothing but gratitude for our participants, partners, and speakers — you've strengthened our belief that the Future is You and Me! In sharing your stories, time, and wisdom, we've sown the seeds for more opportunities for creative women of colour, magic, and transformative conversations.
See you next time!
Megan & Kristin
Esther Chen is a writer and student at the University of British Columbia, currently pursuing her BFA in Creative Writing. Her work can be found in Ricepaper, Poetry is Dead, and Poetry Breakfast, as well as online at estherchen.tumblr.com.
Jana Ghimire loves to give overly detailed advice about anything and everything, whether that be deliberating over selfies for your new profile picture to educating ignorant acquaintances about activism. Currently in her third year of studies, Jana majors in Visual Arts at SFU and aspires to a career in curation or arts administration. Often employing photography, collage, and tactile sculptural forms, her artwork to date has been exhibited at Audain Gallery, James Black Gallery, and Cityscape Gallery.
Josella Tan is a 22-year old Filipino-Canadian lover of the arts. When she's not staring at her computer, she's out petting dogs, taking photos, and hanging out at THRIVE Art Studio.
Joy Gyamfi is a black queer student at UBC, where she studies Psychology and English Literature. Joy is also an organizer and member of the Black Lives Matter Vancouver Collective, actively working to uplift black voices in the city. Joy has recently been published in The Garden Statuary–UBC's Undergraduate Literary Journal.
Ketty Zhang is a visual artist and gelato enthusiast born in Chaoyang, China. When she's not working away on her laptop at a cafe, she likes to pet-sit, eat fusion food, and figure out weird experiences to try out. She's currently working on a solo exhibition that explores Generation 1.5 identities.
With an unequivocal passion for people, ideas, and collaboration, Melissa Ong continues to seek moments for creative expression. Fuelled by her artistic upbringing as a former ballet dancer, she has embraced the shameless daydreamer and hopeful photographer in herself. She is beyond thrilled to join The Future You’s Spring 2017 cohort!
Hello! My name is Mwango Moragia. I was born and raised in Kenya but since coming to Vancouver for school in 2011, I have found a second place to call home. I'm passionate about culture, communication and media. In my spare time you can find me cooking, writing poetry and recycling wine bottles into cool art pieces!
Hi, I'm Shanene Lau! I'm currently a full time design student at Capilano U and a part time potter alongside my classmate; w've been making ceramic homeware as Halsion Collective or the past nine months. When I'm not glued to my laptop or covered in clay, I dabble in illustration, oil painting, needle felting, knitting and various other handicrafts. If I'm involved in any sort of creative project, I'm happy.
Simranpreet Anand comes to the Future from the University of British Columbia where she is working towards her Bachelor of Fine Arts Honours in Visual Arts. In her interdisciplinary artistic practice she engages with the topics of psychology, feminism, and transculturation and how they interrelate and collide with one another in modern society.
Zahida Rahemtulla studied Literature at New York University in New York and Abu Dhabi, where she also took courses in film and theatre. She enjoys writing most and is currently developing a play and writing grant applications for a film about the post-arrival experience for refugees in Vancouver. She works for Pacific Immigrant Resources Society.