why missINFORMED?

As young women, there are many questions we wish we had answers to. Are IUDs safe to use? Do they hurt to insert? Is vaginal discharge normal? Why does penetration hurt for me, but for no one else? Or do we just not talk about it? In conversations with our trans-identifying peers, there were even more questions, with even fewer answers available. Who could we ask, but each other and Google? As hard as it is to approach our friends with “awkward” questions such as these, it’s even more difficult to approach parents, teachers, and counsellors, and so it often comes down to going on private browser mode on your phone, and searching a version of, “is this normal?”. Here’s where it gets even worse - the results are immediately populated with websites like Cosmopolitan and Women’s Health Magazine; the same websites that often encourage fad diets and push wellness techniques that often conflict with the science of today. 

 

OUR MISSION is to answer these important questions, and be the resource we ourselves need. Given that medical literature was predominantly written by and for white men, how can it cater to our needs, and how can we be sure that it will protect the sanctity of our bodies, and the wellness of our minds? Through the use of research that centres gender and sex, we hope to validate more of the lived experiences of young women as they interact with the healthcare system; lived experiences that have been dismissed as "symptoms of our periods”.

 

OUR VISION is to provide scientifically-backed answers to the everyday questions that young women and gender-diverse folks are asking. We want to make this information accessible, relatable and most importantly, shareable so that awareness about women’s health in all of its forms, reaches all corners of Canada.

Our purposes are to:

  1. Create credible resources made accessible to women and gender-diverse folks across what is currently Canada.

  2. To promote health literacy on topics of health that often are mis-represented in, or absent from, formal institutional curricula and the Canadian health system.

  3. To facilitate and promote research that focuses primarily on the impact of gender and sex on health.

  4. To actively advocate for the health and wellbeing of women and gender-diverse folks.

  5. To connect women and gender-diverse folks in communities across what is currently Canada by creating a safe space for sharing lived experiences.

  6. To combat the stigmatization of health issues of women and gender-diverse folks.

  7. To ensure that we centre intersectionality (as coined by Kimberlé Crenshaw) throughout all of our work.

board of directors

Image of Co-founder, Clara MacKinnon smiling and holding a cup of tea
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Honours Bachelor of Science (H)BSc, Neuroscience, Psychology, and Art History

Clara MacKinnon

President, Chair & Co-founder

she/her

Image of Co-founder, Manvi Bhalla standing and smiling
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Master of Science (MSc), Public Health & Health Systems
 

Honours Bachelor of Science (H)BSc, Biomedical Sciences

Manvi Bhalla

Secretary & Co-founder

she/her

Image of Co-founder, Kayla Benjamin smiling
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Master of Science MSc

 

Honours Bachelor of Medical Sciences (H)BMSc

Kayla Benjamin

Chief Research Officer, Treasurer & Co-founder

she/her

advisory committee

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Mount Sinai Bioethics, Reproductive Ethicist, Café Bioethics

Nipa Chauhan

Chair of the Advisory Committee

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Assistant Professor in Educational Psychology, University of Alberta

Melissa Tremblay

Advisory Committee member

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community organizer & prev. student director of UBC Climate Hub

Nafeesa Alibhai

Advisory Committee member

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Medical Biotechnologist & Bioethicist

Srushhti Trivedi

Advisory Committee member

she/her

she/her

they/them

she/her

our members

Communications

Stephanie Lasica 
(She/Her)
Director of Communications

Vanessa Matos
(She/Her)
Communications Coordinator 

Research

Roma Dhamanaskar
(She/Her)
Director of Research 

Han Wellings
(She/They)
Researcher 

Brittany Pompiili
(She/Her)
Researcher 

Emily Clark
(She/Her)
Researcher 

Kyra Keer
(She/Her)
Researcher 

Funding & Partnerships

Prabhjeet Sahota
(She/Her)
Funding & Partnerships Coordinator

Clarisse Connelly
(She/Her)
Funding & Partnerships Coordinator 

Events & Outreach

Jasmine Hector
(She/Her)
Events & Outreach Coordinator

Allaina Morgani
(She/Her)
Events & Outreach Coordinator 

Finances

Madison Lapierre, CPA
(She/Her)
Finance Coordinator

Carly Cihosky
(She/Her)
Researcher 

Zoë Levi
(She/Her)
Researcher