#DaughtersoftheVote

Hey everyone,

Sorry for the couple months of not posting, Writers block is awful and annoying sometimes. But I wanted to share something cool that I was able to participate in on the week of International Women’s Day (March 5th, 2017 – March 10th, 2017) and this was called Daughters of the Vote. Maybe you’re sitting there asking yourself,

What is Daughters of the Vote?

Well I am going to provide you with a short summary of what Daughters of the Vote is and why it’s around. Daughters of the Vote was hosted by Equal Voice Canada and brought 338 young women between the ages of 18-23, from each federal riding to Ottawa, Canada to participate in thought-provoking discussions, to make life-lasting friends and to meet their Member of Parliament. (MP)

I am happy and honoured to say that I was one of the 338 young women to fly to Ottawa to participate in this amazing and life-changing experience. I was able to participate in an indigenous forum to learn more about Indigenous issues in Canada and meet with approx. 70 other inspiring indigenous delegates from all across Canada. We were able to meet inspiring female MP’s and hear from the amazing Nahanni Fontaine and how she is using her title as a Politician to better and strengthen the community.

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Another highlight that I was able to experience at Daughters of the Vote was speaking to the Standing Committee on the Status of Women on the topic of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls of Canada. I spoke briefly on how the government should work towards creating shelters for all ages. Also, how being an indigenous women living in the largest “Urban Reserve” in Canada leaves me fearing for my protection because I feel like almost every month, we hear about another Missing or Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. (MMIWG) It’s upsetting and I also gave my sympathy those the families of MMIWG. I lost my older sister, but we know how she passed, I can’t imagine not knowing if your sister, daughter, aunt, niece or friend is safe or not. Here’s the link if you’d like to watch it. Standing Committee on the Status of Women- Shania Pruden Video

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Something I enjoyed is how inspired Daughters of the Vote left me. I learned more about the different levels of politics, the values of each political party, Parliament Hill and learned more about ways women and girls can get involved with Politics. I heard a keynote address from The Right Honourable, Kim Campbell. How cool! I definitely want to one day become a Politician.

Okay, so I was able to do my FIRST ever LIVE NATIONAL NEWS Interview on CTV National while in Ottawa with a fellow Delegate and Elizabeth May – Here the link if you want to watch it! CTV National News: Power Play

On International Women’s Day, March 8th, 2017. I will never be able to express my gratitude on how Equal Voice gave 338 young women from across Canada the opportunity to take their seat in the House of Commons at Parliament Hill. We were able to hear from many of the delegates about issues that they’re passionate about and hear some amazing speeches from all the Party Leaders. Some of the delegates even got the opportunity to ask The Right Honourable Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau questions – including me. Here’s a photo of me taking over the seat of Elmwood- Transcona.

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The friends I made while in Ottawa are very important to me because they were there when I got homesick, or was nervous about something. They were very opening and I will always appreciate them for that reason. Here’s a few photos from Ottawa.

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Daughters of the Vote left me very inspired and motivated to have a future in Politics, it also left many other young women just as inspired as I was. Here are some quotes from a few of the amazing Daughters of the Vote Delegates.

“Daughters of the vote, reminded me that I can do anything, and that I can achieve amazing things regardless of my personal challenges. No one sets my limits, but me.” -DoV Delegate for Burnaby South 

“Daughters of the vote showed me the beauty that can be achieved through solidarity and sisterhood. Never have I felt so uplifted and so inspired as when I stood in the house of commons cheering my sisters on as they made powerful speeches about issues they were deeply passionate about.” -DoV Delegate for Kanata-Carleton

“DOV reminded me that I have a voice and I can make people listen to me. It made me realize that while I fight for equality for women in technology, my fight is not unique. Women are stronger when women of different backgrounds (political afflication, ethnic, geography, language, and education) come together to fight for each other. There is strength in unity.” -Dov Delegate for Mississauga Centre

Before I end, I would like to say a huge THANK YOU! to Equal Voice Canada for putting this all together. The fact that you made it possible for every single seat in the House of Commons to be filled with women for the first time is truly remarkable. So Thank you for all you’ve done and for what you will do. I enjoyed my time in Ottawa and can’t wait to one day see some of the Daughters of the Vote Delegates put their names on the ballot.

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“A Woman’s Place is in the House of Commons!”

#Make150Count

Leading up to Canada’s 150th birthday, RBC is giving $150 to hundreds of young Canadians and challenging them to make a positive impact in their communities. I was one of those young Canadians selected to participate in RBC’s #Make150Count!

My project that I have decided to do was to make care-packages for the Bear Clan. Here is the video of my project.

To be part of our national movement – RBC’s #Make150Count – tell us how you will help create a better Canada through Instagram or Twitter using #Make150Count. For more information visit: www. make150count.ca

Youth Parliament of Manitoba

Have you ever wondered how political system work? I have too. But I was able to participate in the most beneficial program I’ve ever participated in. This program was called Youth Parliament of Manitoba .

I remember one day, surfing the internet and came across this. I didn’t think much of it and scrolled passed it. A couple weeks later, I happened to come across it again, this time I looked at the link and I had the slightest interest in it, but then again – I closed the link. A week later, it popped up again and this time, I took it into consideration. I spoke to my parents for a while and then made the decision to attend.

The first day, I was very shy. (don’t ask) and I didn’t know anyone, until I seen a friend! I was instantly comfortable to be there. I remember sitting down in the back. Just the environment I was in, everyone was so friendly.

During the next few days, we were able to learn the policies in politics and even participating in very interesting debates (It was my first time debating) and we also were given the opportunity to have a “Meet n’ Greet” luncheons with some political parties. (NDP, Progressive Conservatives and Liberals) During these luncheons, I was able to ask some of the politicians some questions that I’ve always wanted to ask politicians.

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A highlight for me was all the friends I’ve made. I was surprised how everyone become friends with everyone and how no one was left out. The friend’s I’ve made are definitely going to be in my life for a long time. They’ve made my Youth Parliament of Manitoba experience into something that I will never forget.

I would definitely encourage everyone between the ages of 16-20 to apply for this program because you don’t only learn more about the political system, but you make friends that will always be there for you. I can’t wait to go back next year!

For more information on Youth Parliament of Manitoba, you can visit http://www.ypmanitoba.ca/

Here are some more photos of my time at Youth Parliament of Manitoba!

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We Day 2016 Announcement!

Many people have asked me: “Are you at We Day again this year?” and I am happy to share with you guys my answer. So read below.

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What is We Day?

“WE Day is a celebration of youth making a difference in their local and global communities. WE Schools is the yearlong program that nurtures compassion in young people and gives them the tools to create transformational social change.

Together they offer young people the tools and the inspiration to take social action, empower others and transform lives—including their own.”

This year on November 18th, 2016. We Day returns to the MTS Centre in Winnipeg! A day where over 16,000 students and educators come for a day of inspiration and celebration. That cool thing about We Day is that – You can’t buy a ticket to WE Day. Students earn their event tickets by taking one local and one global action through WE Schools, a yearlong educational program that engages and empowers young people to become compassionate leaders and active citizens.

Last year, I spoke at my first We Day at the MTS Centre and spoke to the audience about my story of reconciliation and how to live WE. This year, I have some exciting news to share with you! I’ve been to We Day as an audience member, honoured guest, volunteer, speaker and now I’m going as MEDIA! I will be able to interview some of the speakers and performers throughout the day and possibly meet some of the wonderful students that earned their way to We Day through hard-work and dedication.

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Here is a list of the speakers/performers coming to We Day Manitoba on November 18th, 2016! 

  1. Paula Abdul (@PaulaAbdul) – American singer-songwriter, dancer, choreographer, actress and television personality
  2. Hani Al Moulia – Photographer, teacher, and actor
  3. Jully Black (@JullyBlack) – Award-winning singer-songwriter, speaker, SheRO & SheEO!
  4. Celebrity Marauders – DJ collective including Kardinal Offishall, Cipha Sounds, DJ Starting From Scratch and Dready
  5. Mike Downie – Co-founder of the Gord Downie – Chanie Wenjack Fund
  6. Tyrone Edwards (@mr1LOVETO) – Host – E!/Much
  7. Capri Everitt (@80anthems) – Singer and youth ambassador
  8. Chris Hadfield (@Cmdr_Hadfield) – Astronaut, author, professor, musician, first Canadian to walk in space/command a spaceship
  9. Rick Hansen (@RickHansenFdn) – Canadian Paralympian, activist, and philanthropist
  10. Jillea (@whoisjillea) – Singer and songwriter
  11. Craig and Marc Kielburger (@craigkielburger) – International activists and co-founders of WE
  12. Kyle Nobess (@kylenobess) – Film actor, YouTuber and writer
  13. The Honourable Brian Pallister (@Brian_Pallister) – Premier of Manitoba Government
  14. Tyler Shaw (@TylerShawMusic) – Platinum-selling and JUNO Award-nominated singer/songwriter
  15. Margaret Trudeau – Celebrated Canadian, author & mental health advocate
  16. Nico & Vinz (@NicoandVinz) – Musical duo, Nico Sereba and Vinz Dery 
  17. Spencer West (@spencer2thewest) – ME to WE motivational speaker, WE Ambassador, and author
  18. Chloe Wilde (@TheChloeWilde) – ETALK Reporter and E! Host

I’m super excited for We Day, just so I can finally say that I’ve almost experienced We Day is almost all the ways you can! Thanks!

You can Follow my We Day experience on:

  • twitter: shania_pruden 
  • snapchat: shaniapruden
  • Instagram: shaniapruden

How to combat Racism

Racism is such a horrible thing that is STILL happens today. Today while I was out for lunch with my eleven-year-old brother, he told me something that I will never be able to accept from him. Not only because I think he is perfect the way he is, it’s because he is only ELEVEN!

“I wish I was born white!”

It’s so hard to accept the fact that racism happens in every age, not only in adults. I asked my brother “Why?” and he told me that because “Being white is better than being brown.” I’m in shock because my parents always tell us to never be ashamed of who we are and how we look.

What I want to share is that the only way we can move forward in life is realizing that the colour of someone’s skin does NOT define who they are. Moving to Winnipeg as a young indigenous girl, it was really difficult to find my true self. I was called so many negative names and I was always asked: “Why is your skin so dark?”

The way I am helping combat racism is by, Blogging! I remember feeling so tired of all the negative things I was told in life because of who I was and thinking and asking myself:

“How can I help end Racism – Not in a negative way, but in a positive way?”

So that’s really when it all started, I can honestly say that I was terrified of starting a blog. First things first, I didn’t know how to start a blog, or what I was going to write about. I was NOT a good writer and I was very nervous on the kind of feedback I would get from people. The biggest thing that encouraged me was the fact that is, If no one is doing anything to end racism – then who will? Just like my story and how I started my journey in joining the movement to end Racism, there are much more. It’s your time to pick up the pen and get writing! After the small conversation with my younger brother I want to help people know that YOU can make all the difference in the world by joining the movement to end Racism. It isn’t much but here is a couple ways that can help you start your story on combating racism.

  1. Be willing to listen: A good start is to just stop and being there to listen. Everyone has their stories, and it’s such a privilege to be one of the people to hear someone’s story.
  2. Stay Optimistic: Another good thing is to stay optimistic, there’s no minimum amount of racism you had to deal with to share your story. Small things that leave a HUGE impact on someone’s feelings – good and bad! So when someone shared their story with you, staying optimist will help.
  3. Ask questions: There is no such thing as too many questions. There is also no such thing as a “stupid question” it’s a good thing to do because the more you ask, the more you learn.
  4. Talk with your family about it: Getting your family involved to help end racism would be fantastic! It’s great doing things you love with the people you love.
  5. Be Inclusive: This is super important because it’s a way to ensure that everyone is included.
  6. Don’t be ashamed: Maybe you’re thinking your peers will tease you. Just always remember, to ignore the negatives. There will always be obstacles that come in life – but that’s your time to show your strength.

I really hope you the best in helping to combat racism. It’s something that is still happening, and if you are watching the current news – it’s devastating because we’re all the same…. humans. Just always remember that the only way to move forward in life is to realize that we’re all the same and that no one is better than anyone else. Thanks! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Update!

Hey everyone,

It’s been just over a month since I’ve last posted, so I thought I’d give you all an update on things I have been busy with. Aside from all the events, speaks, work, school, etc – I have also been having some issues with season change sickness. Here are just some of the few things I have been taking part this past month.

  1. United Way Winnipeg: Speaker’s Bureau- This year I decided that I wanted to volunteer my voice to the UWW Speaker’s Bureau. United Way has played such a crucial role in my life without me even knowing it. Shortly after We Day Manitoba last year I learned that some of the important after-school programs I was involved with are funded by United Way. So the thought of giving back to the organization that gave to me was definitely something I wanted to do. Through the Speaker’s Bureau, I was able to meet some of the biggest contributors to UWW, but also I was able to meet some amazing community leaders of Winnipeg. Such as Mayor Brian Bowman, Premiere Brian Pallister, City Councillor Mike Pagtakhan, etc.
  2. United Way Winnipeg: Council for Indigenous Relations- Another thing I have been busy with was the Council for Indigenous Relations. As the only youth on this committee, it is great to represent youth. It’s a wonderful way to get to meet new people, also a great way to contribute to making the world a better place. Connecting the Indigenous community with the non-indigenous community is interesting because it’s something I haven’t done before. So it’s a great new experience.
  3. NorWest Co-op Community Health: Youth Ambassadors for Mental Health- I have been part of this youth advisory committee for about 7 months and it has been the best 7 months so far. We have been helping plan an integrated youth space in the community of Inkster/ Seven Oaks area. Recently we announced that RBC has given us a generous donation of 100k – which we are truly honored and extremely thankful. We definitely know that youth are going to be helped with this new space. For more info on this committee, follow us on Twitter @NorWestYouthHub
  4. Unifor: Human Rights Conference- In September, I had the honor of being asked to sit on a Human Rights Panel in Port Elgin, ON. This conference was to get more people talking about Human Rights. There were over 150 Human Rights Activists present for this conference which was something that I will NEVER forget. The passion that was in one room was very amazing. I spoke about Aboriginal issues in Canada. One thing I left the delegates with was a challenge – to stop and think about something that they did to raise awareness on these issues. One highlight I have from this trip was meeting Susan Agulkark, she is one of my role-models because she proves that regardless of the stereotypes if you have a dream – just go for it!
  5. Peace of Mind 204: YAMIS- Youth Against Mental Illness Stigma is something that I 100% support. I believe that when we all add our voices together, we are heard and when we are heard, we are changing the world. When we speak up about our own experiences we can help other people raise their voices too – when more people talk about their experiences, we are ending the stigma for sure. One thing I am proud about this generation is how strong we actually are. Youth aren’t only the future, but the present too! I was able to speak with students in attendance about finding your spark, lighting it and keeping it going. Also to stay strong and never be ashamed of who you are, because you’re the writer of your story, so never stop writing – you never know if your story is inspiring others to keep writing theirs.
  6. Becoming a Future Politician- One day I went to the Legislative Building to get a tour, to meet some people, but to also sit through my first Manitoba Legislative Assembly meeting while at the same time honoring the life of one my role-models, Larry Morrissette. Larry was one of the four elders that founded the Bear Clan, a group that protects and patrols the North End helping protect our women and children. One of my biggest goals in life is to become a politician, ever since I was younger I wanted to be a Journalist and a Politician – so maybe one day I will be one.

These are just a couple of the things I have been busy with this past month. I didn’t include everything or the next few things I will be participating in. If you want to follow me with everything I am doing you can follow me on Twitter: @Shania_Pruden or follow my blog. I will definitely start writing more once I get more time to myself. Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed! 🙂

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