Skip to main content
Choose to Challenge Podcast

Choose to Challenge Podcast

By The PEI Advisory Council on the Status of Women & Women's Network PEI
A special International Women's Day podcast featuring five exceptional women and gender-diverse people challenging the status quo on PEI.
Listen on
Where to listen
Breaker Logo

Breaker

Google Podcasts Logo

Google Podcasts

RadioPublic Logo

RadioPublic

Spotify Logo

Spotify

Currently playing episode

Episode 4 - Farahnaz Rezaei & Marie Antoinette Pangan

Choose to Challenge Podcast

Episode 4 - Farahnaz Rezaei & Marie Antoinette Pangan

Choose to Challenge Podcast

1x
Episode 5 - Marine Ernoult & Michelle Arsenault
Le cinquième épisode de cette série présente Michelle Arsenault, une «pure acadienne», fière de ses origines et de sa langue, une femme indépendante pour qui l’engagement communautaire est une passion. Interviewée par Marine Ernoult, journaliste française récemment arrivée à l’Î.-P.-É., Michelle partage avec émotion des tranches de sa vie. «Je souhaite que chaque femme ait le courage de faire ce qui la passionne, qu’il n’y ait pas de défi d’être une femme, je souhaite vivre dans une société où les femmes n’aient pas à s’inquiéter de faire ce qu’elles veulent», nous dit-elle. Michelle nous parle : - Des défis de sa vie de jeune maman, De la transmission de ses valeurs, de sa culture et de sa langue, De son engagement communautaire,De sa carrière professionnelle qui l’a conduite jusqu’à des postes à responsabilités. Une pure acadienne». C’est ainsi que se définit Michelle Arsenault. Originaire de la région Évangéline, comme ses parents et ses grands-parents avant elle, la Prince-Édouardienne vit toujours à Abram-Village. À 37 ans, la directrice de Service Finances Î.-P.-É. a relevé de nombreux défis que ce soit dans sa vie personnelle ou professionnelle. À 17 ans, alors qu’elle est en 12ème année à l’école Évangéline, Michelle tombe enceinte. Un événement qui oblige la jeune fille «timide et réservée» à «maturer un peu plus vite que les autres». Mais elle ne lâche rien et mène de front ses études et sa vie de jeune maman. Pour Michelle, la naissance de sa fille est un déclic. L’Acadienne prend conscience de l’importance de transmettre sa culture, sa langue et ses valeurs. Diplômée de l’école Évangéline, Michelle poursuit des études d’adjointe administrative bilingue au Collège de l’Île. Son diplôme en poche en 2003, elle travaille pendant quatre ans à La Voix acadienne où elle se perfectionne en comptabilité. Toujours à la recherche de nouveaux défis, elle devient adjointe administrative à la Coopération d’intégration francophone. Après de brefs passages au sein des gouvernements provincial et fédéral, elle réalise que ce n’est pour elle. La défense des intérêts de la communauté francophone et acadienne lui tient trop à coeur. En 2009, elle intègre donc la Société acadienne et francophone de l’Île-du-Prince-Édouard comme adjointe administrative, avant de grimper les échelons et de devenir directrice du nouveau Service Finances Î.-P.-É. quatre ans plus tard. Animée d’un fort désir d’apprendre, Michelle suit également des cours du soir à l’Université de l’Î.-P.-É. où elle obtient un certificat en affaires. Aujourd’hui à la tête d’un service innovant qui offre des prestations à des organismes communautaires, impliquée dans plusieurs conseils d’administration, Michelle a toujours des projets plein la tête. Elle travaille notamment à la mise en place d’un service partagé en ressources humaines pour les organismes communautaires francophones. Marine, née à Marseille dans le sud de la France, a toujours voulu devenir journaliste, mais est passée par des chemins de traverse pour réaliser son rêve. En 2013, après une maîtrise en droit de l’environnement, puis une autre en droit de l’urbanisme, elle part voyager un an le long des fleuves emblématiques du monde. Cette expérience lui donne le goût du reportage et lui fait prendre conscience de la nécessité de changer de voie. Après une courte expérience de juriste dans un syndicat agricole, elle décide de reprendre ses études en 2016, à l’âge de 29 ans, pour réaliser une troisième maîtrise, cette fois en journalisme. Arrivée à l’Île-du-Prince-Édouard en septembre 2019, elle commence rapidement à travailler comme pigiste pour le journal local La Voix acadienne, mais aussi pour l’Association de la presse francophone ou Francopresse. Elle écrit également des piges pour le  quotidien national français Libération, notamment sur l’érosion.
40:07
March 5, 2021
Episode 4 - Farahnaz Rezaei & Marie Antoinette Pangan
In Episode 4, Farahnaz and Marie Antoinette talk about the immigrant experience on PEI. Marie Antoinette describes her journey as a temporary foreign worker to a registered nurse. They discuss the obstacles she faced and the supports she received from the Filipino and Island community. Marie Antoinette G. Pangan, also known as Ma-An by the Filipino community in PEI, came to PEI as a temporary foreign worker (TFW) in 2010 to work at a fish plant in Bloomfield. She worked several jobs while initiating the permanent residency process. In 2014 she was granted Canadian permanent residency and decided to enroll in a nursing program at UPEI, where she graduated as valedictorian of her class. Currently, she works as a Registered Nurse at Queen Elizabeth Hospital. Farahnaz Rezaei works at the office of Immigration in Prince Edward Island, facilitating newcomer’s settlement, engagement, and integration; She has also worked closely with the Association for Newcomers to Canada in Prince Edward Island (PEIANC), delivering resettlement programs to the Syrian refugee families. Her previous work and training with the High Commissioner for Human Rights Arabic Fellowship Program (OHCHR) and non-governmental organizations in the field of protecting human rights and promoting the nonviolent transformation of conflicts, made her a dedicated advocate for women's rights, human rights, diaspora, religious' minority’s rights, gender equality, and multifaith activities in the Middle East. She has been an active member of various national and international organizations such as Women Cultural Social Society, UNDP, “Women Without Frontiers (WWF), the Management Centre of the Mediterranean, and the International Migration Organization (IOM).  She is an active volunteer in the PEI community and deeply passionate about initiatives that support the development and advancement of cultural diversity, intercultural dialogue, and interfaith inclusion. In 2018, she was selected as one of the Top 25 Immigrants in the Maritimes by My East Coast Experience.
40:08
March 5, 2021
Episode 3 - Josie Baker & Marie Burge
In Episode 3, Josie and Marie discuss the importance of challenging yourself, hope as a willingness to act, social justice as collective work, and Marie's life as a teacher and social justice advocate on PEI.  Bios Marie Burge is a staff person and a founder/member of Cooper Institute Collective (1984) and has about fifty years of experience working on issues of social justice—both in PEI and in the Dominican Republic. She is a program coordinator for Cooper Institute. Currently, the main programs she works on are Basic Income Guarantee, the Protection of PEI Lands, and Proportional Representation for PEI.  All of these involve organizing and implementing, with others, specific community development, and engagement programs to facilitate citizen/resident involvement to influence public policy. She is involved in the preparation of information, interactive workshops, media work, and efforts to engage politicians in various issues. She emphasizes that the strong voice of the community is the most essential and necessary aspect of social change. Marie/Cooper Institute is one of the original members of the PEI Working Group for a Livable Income (2003), which from the beginning has proposed guaranteed basic income as a long-term national solution to impoverishment and marginalization. The Working Group adopted Basic Income Guarantee as to its core campaign in 2013.  Marie is the PEI representative on the national NGO, Coalition Canada: basic income/revenu de base formed in 2019. She also works on issues relating to food sovereignty and immigration. She is a member and plays supporting roles with the Latin American Mission Program (LAMP), and with National Farmers Union (NFU). She is a passionate supporter of Lennon House. Josie Baker is passionate about social justice and has been active as an organizer on issues ranging from migrant worker advocacy to food sovereignty, to feminist organizing. Her academic background is in feminism, community development, and adult education. Since 2010 Josie has been a member of the Cooper Institute Collective. She recently returned to PEI after serving 3 years as executive director of the Tatamagouche Centre in Nova Scotia, a social justice centre for transformative adult education. Josie’s other interests are gardening, food preserving, amateur mycology, and the transformative potential of roleplaying games as a tool for building community.
59:21
March 4, 2021
Episode 2 - Debbie Langston & Julie Bull
In Episode 2, Julie and Debbie discuss topics ranging from the importance of valuing Indigenous knowledge, taking a non-linear trajectory by channeling creativity to achieve social justice, being authentic in your work, and how non-indigenous people can just suck less. Enjoy! Julie Bull (they/them), Ph.D., has been questioning expectations and forging new terrain since they were a two-year-old philosopher. Now an internationally renowned scholar, Julie almost quit their academic studies in their first semester of university. It wasn’t until they listened to their soul (and their mother, who encouraged them to try other fields) that Julie’s path became clear: They are meant to question existing systems, break the status quo, and guide others to find a better and different way. Julie specializes in Indigenous research, especially related to policy and ethics. Currently, based on Epekwitk (Prince Edward Island), Julie runs a consulting collective, projX, where they work with individuals at the systems-level to disrupt racist and discriminatory policies and practices. A self-professed “recovering academic turned entrepreneur and artist,” Julie is also a poet and a spoken-word artist. In 2020, they were awarded a residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity in the Indigenous Storytelling and Spoken-Word program. Using skills from their residency, Julie performed and was a top winner at the PEERS Alliance/PRIDE PEI OUTspoken Poetry Slam in the summer of 2020. They also performed in the Island Fringe Festival’s Pounding the Pavement: Celebrating and amplifying artists from the fringe (2020). Julie’s debut poetry series (h)in(d)sight 2020, the first book in the Spiritual Connection Collection, was published in 2020. You can order Julie's book online here or at Seaside Books in Summerside.  Deborah Langston is a British-born Black woman of Nigerian, Indian, and South American heritage. In 2004 she immigrated to PEI with her husband and three young children. She graduated from the Child and Youth Care Worker at Holland College in 2009 and currently works at Bluefield High School. She is the first Black Chairperson of the PEI Advisory Council on the Status of Women (ACSW) where her focus has been advocating for gender equality, raising awareness about family violence, and offering insights around intersectionality to government consultations and legislation. In her role as Chairperson, she has written several op-eds for the Guardian newspaper - “Dear Lisa” written in the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder as a discourse on her experiences as a Black woman, ran as the front page in June 2020. She has volunteered on the ACSW for five years; her term ends on March 22 this year. She also serves as a director on the Board of PEI Rape and Sexual Assault Centre and is a regular panelist on CBC Mainstreet’s book panel.
50:44
March 3, 2021
Episode 1 - Malak Nassar and Sweta Daboo
In our first episode, UPEI Student Malak Nassar and Sweta Daboo, Executive Director of the PEI Coalition for Women in Government discuss internalized misogyny, acceptability politics, imposter syndrome and the power of intersectionality and allyship in furthering gender equality Sweta Daboo started at UPEI in September 2016 as an international student from Mauritius and graduated in May 2020 with a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Biology, as well as a major in Political Science. While at UPEI she was involved on campus in various ways, including serving in the role of Vice President Academic and External for the UPEI Student Union. After graduating she was hired for the position of Executive Director of the PEI Coalition for Women in Government, beginning in May 2020. Sweta is a regular contributor to CBC Island Morning's political panel, and is also the co-host of a public policy podcast entitled "Dialogue with Drake and Daboo". Malak Nassar is an international student at the University of Prince Edward Island. She is a proud Egyptian woman, studying Political Science and History. Throughout her time at PEI she has been involved with the community, taking up several leadership roles. She is currently the Vice President Academic and External at the University of Prince Edward Island Student Union and the Director of Policy at the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations. She is passionate about social justice, with a focus on women and BIPOC communities. Aside from her career, Malak enjoys art, music, and nature.
35:21
March 2, 2021