CWHN Webinar Series

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What does health mean to girls and young women?
Recorded March 2011

CWHN hosts a conversation about leadership, empowerment and the role of younger people in advancing women’s health. What health issues matter most to young women? How do younger generations of girls and women become involved, and how are they making their voices heard?

Janice Melanson of Breast Cancer Action Montreal talked about Femme Toxic, a project aiming to educate young Canadian women about the potential dangers of cosmetics ingredients and their possible impact on health. The project provides people with the tools they need to create personal change and to influence national legislative reform.

Tatiana Fraser of Girls Action Foundation discussed girls programs as a tool for health promotion.  She will also share Girls Action methods and concrete examples that illustrate how girls and young women are agents for change in areas of health.  Girls Action Foundation is a national organization that “leads and seeds” girls’ programs across Canada, building girls’ and young women’s skills and confidence.

Biomonitoring: Measuring the pollution in women’s bodies to build healthier communities
Recorded March 2011

Sharyle Patton explored the uses of biomonitoring – the testing of one’s body for chemical exposure. She will look at how the experience of knowing one’s body burden (the total amount of chemicals present in the human body at any given time) can help inform personal choice and political engagement.

While the findings from biomonitoring may be devastating to some on an individual level, Patton suggests that if the information is used with sensitivity and respect for tradition, it can be quite powerful in helping groups work for change in toxic chemical policy. A storyteller, Patton illustrated her message with the experiences of women she has encountered through her work.