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Embracing Equity with Tia Anderson

By International Women’s Day, News

International Women’s Day 2023 – Embracing Equity with Tia Anderson 

Role: Owner & Installer

Department: Tia is a Commercial Floorer by trade, and is one of the hardworking contractors working on the future NRGH Intensive Care Unit.

Who do you primarily work with day to day?
My business partner and Husband primarily, helpers if we need extra hands on a job, contractors, and other trades.  Every day is different.

How long have you been in this field?
It will be 11 years as of April 1st 2023.

What is one (or some) of the most challenging, yet rewarding parts of being a woman in your career?
Respect. It can be a challenge not always but sometimes you have to earn it. (Doesn’t help that I look younger than I am and am only 5’3). I work hard, I stand up for what I know is right and I’m darn good at my job. I take pride in what I leave behind at the end of the day.

I recommend showing off in a safe manner – ‘She-Hulking’ as I like to call it. When it comes to doing my job, I’m very particular, and demand a high level of performance. I need other trades to finish their jobs before I can start mine sometimes, but I also need them out of my way once I start. Earning a mutual working respect with your colleagues, regardless of gender is incredibly rewarding.

How do you support other women in your field?
You don’t see a lot of women in flooring. We are out there, but it is not for everybody. It is a very physically challenging job. Most of the crews I have worked with I’ve been the sole female, but the people you work with know what you’re capable of and can help when you need it. You have to be willing to work hard but also admit when you need help – whether that is a man or a woman asking for a helping hand.

This year’s theme is Embracing Equality, how does this resonate with you in your workplace?
I don’t really see gender I just see people. But I know over the years woman have started to be far more welcomed on construction and trade sites. I wish I could say we are at a fully equitable level in this industry, but that isn’t true just yet, but it has gotten better and I am confident will continue to.

What you like to do in your spare time?
My hubbie and I have been together for 8 years. We have had our own company for 5 years.
We have our cat fur baby and hoping to start a human family in the next couple years.
On days off I love to bake! I like going rock hunting, build lego, and just relaxing!



Embracing Equity with Social Worker Vanessa Portlock

By International Women’s Day, News

 International Women’s Day 2023 – Embracing Equity with Social Worker Vanessa Portlock

Role: Social Worker

Department: Child Youth and Family

Who do you primarily work with day to day
As a social worker on the Perinatal, Neonatal and Pediatric unit my day to day work varies. I support women and their families throughout her pregnancy to the birth of her baby, and can include high risk pregnancies, prenatal substance use, mental health concerns, domestic violence issues, socioeconomic concerns, poverty, homelessness, pregnancy loss.  My work on the Pediatric unit includes working with families of children who present with health, and or mental health concerns.

How long have you been in the health care field?
I have been in the health care field for a number of years starting in Community Health services with Island health, then finding my way to a hospital setting where I gained experience as a social worker in Acute care and the Renal department before working in the Child Youth and Family Unit of the hospital.

What is one of the most Challenging yet rewarding parts of being a women in your career?
One of the most Challenging parts of my work is the gaps in much needed services and supports that can have negative impacts on health outcomes for women and children. Tasks needed to make changes can feel overwhelming when considering the resources that have to be mobilized to address the gaps.

Most rewarding is the recognition of the value of advocacy to bring attention to what needs to change. In my working career I have seen individuals coming together to speak about solutions, create opportunities with community partners to address the gaps in services and resources to come up with concrete solutions.

Most rewarding is the ability to access funding support for families when they are facing a crisis. The ability to access funding for accommodation if a family is facing a medical emergency and not in their home community has played a key role in alleviating stress, helping the family to focus on being present for their sick family member.

How do you support other women in your department/ward/field
I work as part of a team. With team members I engage in ongoing conversations, encourage self-reflection to examine our biases, beliefs and prejudices and how this may impact interactions. Education is used to provide knowledge and understanding for example of the impact of colonization, trauma, addressing unjust and unfair practices, fostering compassion.

When considering the theme “embracing equality”
I believe change starts with you and me, a change in behavior, attitude, questioning unfair and unjust practices, drawing attention to the beliefs and attitudes, ideas that are harmful, envisioning a world where diversity is celebrated, and the value of each individual is seen and acknowledged regardless of orientation, race, background and different abilities. Like a pebble that is thrown into a lake as we collectively stand together to embrace equity the ripples become waves of change.

My personal side
In my spare time I am happiest spending time with my family, going on hikes, exploring new areas, I enjoy photography and playing with paint, I am mindful to practice gratitude.

The Sew Wats Give for the Children

By March 8, 2022

Photo, from left to right: Sew Wat members Peggie Sonnefeld, Hope Jordan, Carol Denike, Lynn Morrisey, Alice Akins and the Foundation’s Sue Ryan

The Sew Wats came in to the Foundation office recently to donate eleven beautiful blankets for children treated at the Vancouver Island Suspected Child Abuse Network (VISCAN). The blankets are used to help comfort children during treatment and assessment. When this thoughtful group of women heard about the need for the blankets they immediately began sewing for the cause. For 30 years the Sew Wats have met every Wednesday afternoon for tea and sewing. The Foundation is very grateful for your care and compassion for the most vulnerable of our community.

Wheel-O-Rama supports NRGH

By March 8, 2022

Photo left to right: Allen Felker and Foundation CEO Janice Perrino.

Wheel-O-Rama organizer Allen Felker came in to donate the proceeds from this one of a kind fundraiser he organized in mid-July. Felker’s vision was to host an all wheeled show in an effort to include ‘anything on wheels’. He had been attending various car shows on the Island and thought it would be a great idea to ‘throw the doors open’ and see what would happen. Felker also wanted to give back to the community he lives and works in and so he chose to give proceeds to the Nanaimo & District Hospital Foundation to support our Hospital.

“This was a great family friendly event and we really appreciate all the hard work that Allen and his volunteers put in to support our Hospital,” said Janice Perrino, Foundation CEO.
Felker is already working on Wheel-O-Rama 2018; watch his website for updates

Birdies for Health Gives for the Heart

By March 8, 2022

Photo from Left to Right: Shirin Anjarwalla and Foundation CEO Janice Perrino.

Shirin Anjarwalla has been busy all summer long raising funds and awareness for her Birdies for Health fundraiser that she initiated on her own to give back to her community.

Eight years ago Shirin witnessed her Dad’s recovery from a heart attack and the exceptional care he received from Nanaimo Regional General Hospital (NRGH) so she made a decision that this year she wanted to raise money for heart health to honour her Dad.

Shirin raised $385.00 to help purchase Hearth Health equipment at NRGH and has pledged to raise money again next year. “We really appreciate what Shirin has done for this community she is just such an inspiration and we are thrilled that she wants to do this again next year,” said Janice Perrino, the Foundation’s CEO.

Tribute Festival Gives To CT Scanner

By March 8, 2022

From left to right: Sheryl Briggs, Sharon, Janice Perrino & Sherry Judson

The Vancouver Island Tribute Festival presented Foundation CEO Janice Perrino with a cheque for $10,000 raised at the festival in May. Thank you to the organizers for all the hard work that went into making this such an outstanding weekend of music and entertainment and raising these funds for the CT Scanner at NRGH. Watch their website for next year’s dates

Poppy Funds Support NRGH

By March 8, 2022

Photo left to right: Joann Walton-Hatch, 1st Vice President and Poppy Fund Treasure; Janice Perrino, of the Hospital Foundation.

Last Fall Canadians proudly wore their poppies as a symbol of appreciation for the many men and women who devoted their lives to serve our country. Here in Nanaimo Joann Walton-Hatch of the Royal Canadian Legion Mount Benson Branch #256 recently delivered a portion of the money they raised through poppy sales to Janice Perrino, CEO of the Nanaimo & District Hospital Foundation. The $3,000 will go towards the purchase of medical equipment at Nanaimo Regional General Hospital.

Since 1990 the Branch #256 has delivered almost $115,000 to the Nanaimo & District Hospital Foundation for healthcare equipment and programs that benefit veterans and their families.