The immigrant women’s centre in Hamilton held their very first graduation ceremony for the new “Women of Action” program. Graduates have learned about the community and hope to make positive change.
Today is a very special day for Elen Ranas. After moving to Hamilton from the Philippines just 5 years ago, Elen graduated from the Women of Action program: “This program is a very great achievement for me and it is an empowering experience and now I think I’m ready to go out in Hamilton and put in my skills and abilities for whatever comes across me.”
Women in the program have recently immigrated to Canada. They completed training and developed leadership skills to make a difference in Hamilton.
Key note speaker Pat Wright specializes in diversity and inclusion and left the graduates with some motivational words.
Elen said: “Women of action — doesn’t that sound fantastic? It is because it is fantastic. I know as we start out on this journey in spring time, it’s an ideal time to really graduate and move forward.”
The council chamber at city hall was filled with smiles. Elen said: “It is a proud moment for us to move ahead and to show the community that we can always lead, we can always be part of this community.”
Ellen is one of 16 graduates who hopes to make a change in the community. since completing the program she has been accepted as the newest member of the city of hamilton’s engagement committee.
All of the women hope to use their skills and experiences to better the people around them. Pat Wright said: “With every step you say my leadership is blooming because I’m a woman of action. I know where I’m going, I know who I am, I know what I have to do because I am a woman of action. That’s me.”
And with the dedication of this group big things may happen for Hamilton.
The program runs for 6 months and takes place two nights a week. The graduates went through training and ran civic projects in the city — and are so excited to make Hamilton a diverse place to be. The next session begins May 13th