We are the first Canadian incorporated organization created by survivors, for survivors.

Since our founding in 2008, we have been working to place the voices of women survivors of gendered violence at the centre of decision-making, policy change, and personal advocacy.

We are the true experts, and our organization channels our shared experiences to create a better world for everyone.

Personal Advocacy

Through our personal advocacy programs, our members participate in skills-building training and other workshops that help them to develop their voice, connect with other women survivors of gendered violence, engage in peer support, and acquire practical skills to help navigate the various systems including family courts and child welfare.

Political Advocacy

Through our political advocacy, our members provide expert insight directly to governments, service agencies and other organizations by engaging in research initiatives, focus groups, and participating in steering committees, in order to ensure that the voices of survivors are informing policies and programs so that these agencies can respond better to the needs of women experiencing violence.

Social Advocacy

Through our social advocacy, our members and staff work on initiatives to raise public awareness, influence public opinion and change public perceptions of woman abuse by developing community outreach initiatives and engaging with the media, schools, and the private sector. We bring valuable insight from women who have experienced gendered violence as a way to inform society and dispel the myths.

By The Numbers

0
in 3 women will experience some form of gendered violence in their lifetime
0 %
of sexual assaults were committed against women aged 15-24
0
number of days that goes by where a woman or girl is a victim of femicide in Canada
$ 0
billion - combined economic cost of intimate partner & sexual violence against women in Canada

Meet Our Team

Nneka is an advocate who works with government and other organizations to eradicate violence against women.
Read Nneka's Bio

Nneka MacGregor

Executive Director

Shelleena is the Project Coordinator for the Transformative Justice initiative, which allows her to pursue her deep passion for advocacy and research.
Read Shelleena's Bio

Shelleena Hackett

Project Coordinator

Nicole is a Project Coordinator for capacity-building programs, with a passion for community activism on social issues related to women’s rights.
Read Nicole's Bio

Nicole Fontyn

Project Coordinator

Karia is a Project Coordinator for capacity-building programs, with a special personal interest in empowering and supporting young Black girls.
Read Karia's Bio

Karia Jones

Program Coordinator

Shirley is dedicated to the use of scientific evidence to inform clinical practice, through a number of research studies related to both victim/survivors of violence and offender management.
Read Shirley's Bio

Shirley Broekstra

Research Associate

Amanda is the Podcast Producer, and an advocate who seeks to dismantle the structural inequalities that impact the daily lived experiences of women.
Read Amanda's Bio

Amanda Hollahan

Podcast Producer

Dr. Tope Adefarakan
Board Co-Chair
Veronica Campos
Board Co-Chair
Christine McCaw
Board Secretary
Esther Addo
Board Treasurer
Alex Plegas
Board Director

Our Funders

Our Partners

Get in touch

Give us a call: 416-964-0892

Send us a message: admin@womenatthecentre.com

Become a member

Learn about our what it means to be a member, and sign up to join the organization.

Copyright © 2019. Women’s Centre for Social Justice. All Rights Reserved.

Nneka is an advocate who works with government and other organizations to eradicate violence against women. She is the co-founder and Executive Director of the Women’s Centre for Social Justice, also known as the WomenatthecentrE, our unique non-profit organization that was created for women survivors of gender-based violence, by women survivors. Nneka develops and delivers training to various agencies and organizations that promotes better understanding of the issues, and focuses on personal and political advocacy for women survivors, as well as on ways to engage men and boys in the initiatives to eradicate violence against women.

"It’s critical that those with the lived experience be the ones at the centre of social policy and reform. We must leave the shame behind and focus on ways to empower ourselves, our children … our society as a whole, to understand that violence against women, in any shape or form, is not acceptable. So we use our personal tragedies as a way to change the world – for the better."

Shelleena is a graduate of the University of Guelph where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree, focusing on Sociology; she then attended Ryerson University where she graduated with a Bachelor of Social Work and continued on to receive her Masters of Social Work. Shelleena has completed research in feminist parenting and transracial foster placements, as well as aided in research on the intersection of Indigenous communities and IPV. She is currently completing research around sexual violence and justice.

Shelleena has over 10 years’ experience working in Mental Health and she continues to expand her knowledge. She identifies as a transfeminist, pansexual woman and is an avid advocate for notably queer and trans communities and the environment.

When she is not working with incredibly empowering comrades and advocates, she enjoys backpacking and travelling to other countries while learning about different places and enjoying new experiences and food.

Nicole is currently a Master of Social Work (MSW) student at Ryerson University completing her practicum with WomenatthecentrE. Her work includes community development, policy analysis, and advocacy work in the areas of gender-based violence, mental health and addictions, and homelessness. Nicole was recently introduced to art as a tool for resistance and social change, which has inspired her to incorporate photography into her current major researcher paper (MRP) on embodied representations of women’s resistance and strength within the context of gendered violence.

“It is imperative to not only recognize and understand the multiple, intersecting systems that oppress women, but it is equally, if not more important to highlight the ways in which women resist oppression. We need to centre strategies of resistance to create opportunities for survivors to confidently exercise power in ways that shift how people, including themselves, think about violence against women.”

Karia is currently at Ryerson University completing her Masters of Social Work (MSW). She is conducting research on the impacts of violence and trauma on the mental health of Black Canadians. She works with women, children, youth, those experiencing homelessness, and various marginalized populations.

"We are all swimming in shit, smell yourself before you smell someone else."

Shirley is a Registered Nurse. She has a Masters in Education, in Psychology and Community Development from the University of Toronto. For over fourteen years, she contributed to the care of survivors of interpersonal violence in her position as Manager of the Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Care Centre in Scarborough. She was presented with the Community Service Award by the Ontario Medical Association in 2010.

Prior to this she worked with the perpetrators of sexual violence in partnership with the forensic treatment community, assessing and monitoring offenders reintegration into the community.

Janet is a social worker, a survivor of gender based violence, and an advocate for social justice. She holds a diploma in Child and Youth Work with Honours from Humber College. Janet also holds a Bachelor of Social Work from York University and is currently a candidate for Master of Social Work from York University, ready to defend her dissertation on Anti-black Racism and Canadian Child Welfare.

“Once you know a thing, you can't unknow it.”

Amanda is currently completing her Bachelor of Social Work at Ryerson University. Within her studies, she is particularly interested in examining the intersections of fatness and gender; the impacts of familial and intimate-partner violence; and the ways in which dominant power structures such as Whiteness, sexism, and heteronormativity are enacted through our current legal system.

“The word ‘survivor’ is more than an individual identity. It is a political term. Although at times we may feel like victims, what should be highlighted is our continued, collective survival. This isn’t about one woman, it is about all of us, as survivors, taking up an identity of empowerment.”