Candidate Bios

Susanne Dahlin

Susanne has been a resident of Grandview Woodlands for the past 49 years.  

She raised two boys in the neighborhood and was involved in many community-based activities with her sons including soccer, hockey and baseball. She was active in Family Place, chair of her local Parent Advisory committee, active on the Inner-City Schools Advisory committee and former Chair of the local Traffic Planning committee.

Susanne joined the Board of the Britannia Board of Management after her retirement.  This is the fourth time that Susanne is running for the Board.  In her terms on the Board Susanne has been committed to enhancing community engagement and outreach and ensuring that reconciliation informs a core approach of the philosophy and services to Britannia.

Susanne is the Chair of the Planning and Development committee, a position she now shares with Annie Danilko.  In that capacity she has worked tirelessly with community partners and the community to ensure the future redevelopment of Britannia responds to the current and future needs of the community while building on the visions of the founders.

 

Pamela Dudas

Pamela was born and raised in Vancouver and has lived in the Grandview Woodlands Neighbourhood for over 40 yrs.

She has served on the Britannia Community Centre Services for the past 4 yrs most recently as the Vice-President of the Board.

She is chair of the Board Development, Pool & Fitness, and Volunteer Committees and also sits on the Finance, Planning & Development, and various board working groups.

Pamela’s passions besides BCCSS is physical fitness and is currently training for the World Triathlon Long Distance Championships, Netherlands 2021.

Employed as an Accountant, she has worked in many not for profit societies as well government and private organizations throughout her career.

 

Ariela Friedmann

I believe in volunteering and social justice – and I walk the talk. Though I work full-time in non-profit, I have always been actively engaged in community service, especially in the Grandview Woodland area where I’ve resided for 21 years.

I am an active committee volunteer on the Britannia Centre Pool and Fitness Centre Committee, The Cultch (Vancouver East Cultural Theatre) and York Theatre – when in operation –and have sat on several Britannia-related hearings and advisory committees.

I am a regular patron of the Britannia Centre and partake in various programs and services. Living just a few blocks away, Britannia is part of my community and network -- and what happens at Britannia is really a reflection of this amazing, diverse neighbourhood.

I currently lead the Communications and Marketing function at MOSAIC, one of BC’s largest non-profit organizations focused on providing settlement and employment services to immigrants and refugees, and newcomers from diverse backgrounds. In fact, MOSAIC has a long and integrated history with Britannia, serving and helping many newcomers attached to the services and school. A MOSAIC free language school and a MOSAIC-run WorkBC Centre are just down the road from the Centre.

Previously, I led Communications and Marketing at the Greater Vancouver Food Bank, again working with and supporting a diverse and vulnerable community, including those connected to Britannia.

I have a combined degree, Bachelor of Journalism and English, from Carleton University in Ottawa – and have purposefully chosen to remain in non-profit communications as a way to give back to community.

Civic and social engagement are our responsibility, and I would be proud to serve on the Britannia Board.


Vera Jones

I want to acknowledge my Creator; the ancestors of this land - the Squamish, Musqueam and Tslewatuth for allowing me on their territory to do the good work required of me.  I am a board member for the Britannia Community Centre.  I am an Indigenous Nisga’a Elder – a member in good standing since January 1968 (and before) in Vancouver.  I have seen many changes within the Indigenous community itself and Vancouver at large.  The Indigenous community has gone from possibly only two aboriginal organizations in Greater Vancouver to many, many indigenous organizations in greater Vancouver.  I completed grade 12 and went on to further my education in the helping field. I have been employed off and on since I was 15 years of age.  I am currently working at the age of 74.  I enjoy my work – as part of the reconciliation process I work closely with Indigenous and non- Indigenous members wherever I am required.  I have also seen the downside of our communities especially in the downtown eastside Vancouver.   When I moved here in January 1968 what was commonly known as ‘skid road’, has now become a full-fletched village of homeless and addictive people from everywhere.  The issue of homelessness is of epidemic proportions with seemingly no end in sight.  The issue of addictions has risen exponentially with the newest drugs causing death.   In 1968/69/70/71 what was commonly known as ‘skid road’ was all of two handful of people who were in their addictions and seen in a one/two-block alley north west of main and Hastings.  I remember driving with a friend how I was appalled seeing a ‘skid road bum laying in that alley. 

My immediate concern is for the Indigenous Elders and now for seniors within the East Vancouver area.   I am happy that some of the seniors in the greater Vancouver area have a ‘goto’ place – there is a ‘crying’ need for elders and senior to have a safe place to go to in the East Vancouver area.  There are multi-cultural societies springing up everywhere with specific requirements; again I am happy about that.  In my driving around in the greater Vancouver area I noticed there are senior centers and that is good.  I went to one and there was no acknowledgement of my presence.  In fact I did not know who I should talk to about possibly joining that center.  Because I did not feel that welcoming I left the center.  I was saddened by this reception; because being an elder it encompasses a lot of new issues – ie. loneliness; isolation, not having any friends; not having anyone to talk to; a feeling of aloneness /safety / to not be acknowledged / having health issues /isolation / emptiness / depression / disheartenment / racism / separation from family / friends & family members our age are dying / ‘a soft place to land’/no projects to get involved in – especially if you’re on a limited income.   I have sat on the board for Vancouver Native Housing Society for years now.  I did limit my involvement as I have family who have their own family and now that family are having their own family.  My family tree is growing.  I am Nisga’a and keep my ties with the Nisga’a organization here in Vancouver;.  I am also an Indian Residential School Survivor of 14 years.  I am committed to my self-healing as I choose to be a good example for the Aboriginal members and especially to my immediate family.   I have compassion for the Aboriginal elders and to the seniors that attend the Britannia 55+ Centre.   Although I have recently involved myself with Britannia 55+ Ctr. in a very short time I have gained a very keen interest in what the stakes are for the elders and the seniors in the Eastside Vancouver Area (EVA).  I have gotten to meet other community members at my age by attending the meetings and I feel that closeness - we share that common bond. I work with the Indian Residential School Survivor Society as a support worker -  I work closely with the Indigenous IRS survivors and Intergeneration of the IRS survivors.  I go to the various Indigenous organizations where elders are at a certain time each week.  The immediate concern with the Indigenous members is ‘reconciliation’ – not just Indigenous members but all members at large.  In order for the problems to be dealt with we need to come together and smash that barrier of separation/segregation.….  All in all I am active;  I have and do raise concerns; I speak out as necessary; I do re-iterate some issues that require attention – ABORIGINAL ELDERS NEED THEIR OWN GOTO CENTER.....……… there has never been one… especially in the East Van community…  Sure there are projects on the go but it is not enough.  It would be nice if they were able to go have a cup of tea and a light snack; someone to talk to or not talk to – but still feel welcomed; bring a smile to their faces.  I find with the Britannia 55+ Centre the workers and their volunteers bring that joy, laughter, humor, acceptance……….. In the end it’s all about laughter, communications, getting together, a feeling of joy; communicating with anybody who is willing to communicate with you… Britannia 55+ is exceptional.  I said I’m active and that’s true – I support the traditional and cultural way of life for those that are changing their way of life from negative to positive within the Indigenous community.  I remain involved with activities such as Indigenous Days;  Nisga’a Hobiyee (New Year) Celebration in Feb every year; Pow wows, community activities workshops/meetings.....When I have vacation time I will go down to the states and visit sites like Grand Canyon; Utah;  Graceland; other sites family recently went to Mexico to my grandson getting married 3 year ago. Due to a recent fall I had to cancel my vacation to Graceland last year......So all in all I would say I’m pretty active………

And last of all I am seriously committed to issues and concerns regarding the Indigenous Elders and the Seniors in the East Van Area.  The members at 55+ Center have come together fund raising/ crafting projects for Indigenous events….

Thank you for your time

Thank you Creator………………………..all my relations


Ashki Shkur

Hello, my name is Ashki Shkur and I am from a city called Slemani in Kurdistan.
My pronouns are she/her/hers, and I moved to Canada 4 years ago from Kurdistan. I am a grade 11 student at Britannia Secondary School.

I am currently involved in many clubs and activities within my school and outside of it. Some of the clubs and committees that I am a part of are the Britannia Anti-racism and Anti- oppression Committee, the Britannia Youth Committee, the Co-founder of “The Ripple Effect” organization, the Britannia BIPOC Committee and the Britannia Secondary School Student Council as Vice President.

In the future I am hoping to go into Kinesiology or Biochemistry in the hopes of going to medical school and becoming a neurosurgeon! I love being involved in my community because I want to give back and create change within it as much as I can.

I am hoping to work together with the other members of the Board Management to make our East Van community even more welcoming and supportive of our people. By being a member of this board, I will bring communication skills, time management skills and networking skills to the work environment. As a youth representative I will do my best to be a voice of the youth in the Britannia community.



Khai Truong

Hi! My name is Khai Truong. My pronouns are he/him/his. I was born in Vancouver and am second generation Canadian, with my parents immigrating to Canada from Vietnam. I am very grateful for the life that I have been given as a settler on unceded traditional Coast Salish territory.

I am a grade 11 student at Britannia Secondary, and as a Youth Representative on the Board of Management, I am very excited not only to offer my voice and the voices of youth but also to learn from the many other voices within our community. I have felt a sense of acceptance and belonging ever since I came to Britannia in grade 8, and I want everybody who is a part of Britannia, especially youth, to feel the same way: included and represented.  Volunteering is my way of giving back to the community that has done so much for me in finding who I am and discovering the person I want to become. When I can find the time, I love painting skyscapes and landscapes in watercolour!



Emily Vickery

Greetings and Kwehkwe,

I am interested in contributing to Britannia Community Centre as a member of the Board of Directors.  I have served one term with the Board of Management and would very much like to continue acting in this role.

About me:

I am a Sport Development Coordinator for viaSport British Columbia, a not-for-profit organization dedicated towards strengthening BC’s amateur sport system and stewarding the government's investment in sport. I hold a bachelor’s degree Sport and Fitness Leadership with a Sport Management designation. I have previous sport experience with triathlon, synchronized swimming,  basketball, wheelchair rugby, open water swimming and BC Summer Games. I have a passion for bridging barriers to promote wellness through physical activity.  In my nearly 10 years as a sport administrator, I have been involved in a number of different initiatives.

Community is very important to me.  I currently live in a housing cooperative and play an active role as the chair of the cooperative’s maintenance committee.  I also volunteer as a Big Sister in a mentorship role and am a previous member of the Britannia Board of Management.

I am passionate about sport, physical activity and wellness.  I believe recreation centres play a pivotal role in creating healthy and happy communities.  I have seen this exemplified within the unique, diverse and welcoming programs at Britannia Community Centre.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my previous term with the Britannia Board of Management and look forward for the opportunity to contribute further to the amazing, staff, volunteers, and community minded people who act as the heart of this facility.