Getting to know Crystal

Crystal Chan is the newest member of the Women’s Centre team! She is joining us as a volunteer program coordinator and will be helping with interviewing and training new volunteers for the peer support roles. Feel free to stop by the Centre and welcome Crystal.

Tell us a bit about yourself!

I was born and raised in Calgary and have a background in Social Work and Sociology.  After graduating, I worked with the Government of Alberta in the AISH program as well as with the Calgary Workers’ Resource Centre.  Aside from work, I am an avid reader (A Song of Ice and Fire is one of my favourite series) who also practices guitar and loves showtunes.  I am really excited to be joining the Women’s Centre and getting to know all the amazing women who make the Centre such a great place to be!

What is your personal definition of feminism?

I believe that feminism is an acknowledgement that women face systemic and systematic discrimination in their life and that this discrimination creates a barrier that inhibits women from achieving their full potential.  At its core, I also believe that feminism is about empowerment and ensuring that each individual woman is free to choose her own path without feeling trapped by societal expectations.

What brought you to the Women’s Centre of Calgary?

When I was young, I read a lot of books written by strong women like Marion Zimmer Bradley and Donna Gillespie.  Since reading those books, I have always identified as a proud feminist and been drawn to advocate for equal rights.  While job searching, I came across the Women’s Centre’s website and had the opportunity to learn how much our values aligned.  So, I submitted an application and here I am!

What’s one thing you hope to learn at the Women’s Centre?

Since starting at the Women’s Centre, I have had the opportunity to learn a bit about the Peer Model and I am really looking forward to not only learn more but to implement it in my everyday work.  I would also love to learn more about the volunteers and women that come in to the Centre.

Describe a woman who you admire or who has influenced your life.

My sister is definitely someone I admire and has had a huge influence in my life.  Not only is she very intelligent, but she is incredibly generous to everyone she meets and always has time to go the extra mile for her family and friends.  I have been able to lean on her for support my entire life and she has always been a source of strength for me.

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