Improving Women's Lives for Over 50 Years!
In 1999, the Zonta Club of Victoria welcomed Una Lennam as a new member. Before moving to Victoria, Una had taught social work in Calgary, including developing a programme which was included in the city's police force training. Towards the end of her career, she did a stint of teaching in Gaza. To Una, education was paramount: a characteristic that fits very well with the ideals of Zonta.
Una was always up for a little bit of fun- and members remember how she dressed as the Queen when Zonta participated in a local parade! On the serious side, she was proud to work, each year, on the Young Women in Public Affairs project. What did we say about education being so important?
Una left this mortal coil in August 2019, but her spirit of wanting women to gain access to education- well- it was never meant to leave! Friends and family donated, to Zonta, monies to be dedicated to educating women, preferably in a manner befitting the social worker who cared a lot about immigrant and refugee women.
The scholarships were used to support training for counsellors and interpreters provided by Trainer/Supervisors, Dr Jaswant Guzder and Jasmin Gerwein. Since receiving the funding in May VICCIR has organized one training per month for the counsellors and one per month for the interpreters.
Counsellors' training included these workshops by Jaswant Guzder, McGill division of Social and Transcultural Psychiatry:
1. Working with Interpreters: a clinical partnership
2. Cultural Formulation outline as a clinical tool
3. Shifting frameworks and identities: some thoughts on migration and gendered hierarchies
4. Cultural translation of refugee trauma: Cultural idioms of distress among Somali refugees in displacement
In addition, all new interpreters must go through an initial training. Following that once a month they receive ongoing training.
Here are some testimonials from VICCIR interpreters and counsellors who attended the trainings:
That was a great pleasure to have Jasmin as supervisor for our interpreter training. We benefit from her experience to be better interpreter by discussing certain issues or situations that could occur during our work. Exchanging our experiences make it more easier for us to handle our work. It's a continuous learning from an experienced instructor like Jasmin. We definitely enjoyed those sessions and will be never enough of them. Thanks for her time and patience to share her experience and concerns with us. Thank you.
I appreciate very much the training sessions, the continuous follow up and support given by Jasmin. She gave me quite valuable insights on interpretation methods, as well the tools and motivation that I need in order to be a professional interpreter and create a difference.
I learned a lot from Jasmine’s training, Which included the ways to be an effective interpreter, the do and don’ts, how to respect the relationship between the client and the counsellor, and finally the code of conduct and how important it is.
I have benefited greatly from the training sessions provided by Jaswant Guzder. The topics have been relevant and timely, and Dr Guzder’s expertise has helped me understand and work with my clients in ways that have better taken into account their cultural, linguistic and historical contexts. These trainings have enabled me to provide better care to my clients.
Vancouver Island Counselling Centre for Immigrants and Refugees (VICCIR) used the funds to train several women - both counsellors and interpreters- as noted on the left. Una would be excited to know that the monies supported education, refugees, immigrants, and women!