Kira is one of our practicum students from the University of Calgary joining us for the fall semester. Read on below to find out more about her.
Tell us a bit about yourself!
I am a Bachelor of Social Work student at the University of Calgary, set to graduate in April 2017! I was born and raised in Calgary, am a dog lover, avid feminist reader, and pumpkin spice enthusiast. I love my city, and it will always be home, but I enjoy getting time away occasionally in the mountains or traveling. Most of my free time I spend outdoors as much as I possibly can, doing things like biking, hiking, skiing, playing sports, or swimming.
What is your personal definition of feminism?
For me, feminism is an always evolving and growing force in my life that I love learning more about and sharing with others. However, because it’s always changing to me it is a definition that is hard to pin down. Feminism can touch on so many things, and to me is the active recognition of various forms of privilege and oppression that come with different gender identities. To be complete, I also think we need to look at the intersectional issues that affect people’s experiences with gender identity to eliminate discrimination and gender expectations.
What brought you to the Women’s Centre of Calgary?
Diversity, anti-oppressive approaches, and intersectional feminism! What more could a girl need? I have always had an interest in using a gendered lens to look at different facets of privilege and oppression, and have been reading books on feminism for as long as I can remember. So a women-based centre offered me a unique opportunity to put my theoretical knowledge into practice with real live situations and hopefully make a difference.
What’s one thing you hope to learn at the Women’s Centre?
I hope to learn more about community development through the women’s centre. Much of my previous experience in social work has been clinically based so I am excited to see a new approach to addressing different social and economic these issues. I am also curious to discover how the Women’s Centre uses the peer model to address these issues, in addition to empowering women to realize their agency to build up their own communities and make contributions as experts in their own needs and wants.
Describe a woman who you admire or who has influenced your life.
My mother is a big source of inspiration to me, and I always admired her ability to be both kind and strong at the same time. As a single mother, she always kept me surrounded by strong female role models and instilled in me the belief that I could do anything I set my mind to. She has been a huge force in shaping the person I am today.