Update from Rachel and Andrea

Wow, we have a lot to be excited and thankful for this month!   

The headliner, of course is the incredible success of our 50th Anniversary Celebration: Choice.  Our generous hosts, David Loan and the gracious crew of Zen Kitchen, provided our guests with a delicious and interesting 4 course meal that left everyone delighted and amazed.  It is exciting to share the brilliance of the fine cuisine there with folks as they dine in wonder and awe that it is all vegan, the cheeses and chocolate torte seem impossible. It was a magical night.  We were so happy to have so many people who are deeply committed to women’s health, sexual and reproductive rights and ultimately Planned Parenthood there.  We owe a tremendous thanks to Ian Capstick and Annie Urban for hosting with such energy and engagement.

The event also brought us closer to key individuals and organizations who are key to the present and future of PPO, namely we would like to thank Penny Collinette, Shirley Greenburg, the Canadian Labour Congress, the Ottawa District Labour Council and the Women’s Committee of PSAC.  We are delighted that conversations began that day that will continue to make opportunities for PPO to work with these folks for improved sexual and reproductive health in our community!

We also want to thank CHUO for the amazing piece they did on the event day, and the folks who participated in the interviews.  Please take a listen here https://soundcloud.com/sarah-petz/midweek-anniversary-srp-doc.  And our sponsors Ottawa Woman for their beautiful ad, Venus Envy, Emond Harnden, and The Cooperators for ensuring that the event met its goals!   What a community of support and activism we have!

And speaking of support and activism, did you see our Facebook post (https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151888327838463.1073741830.285360338462&type=1) about the gorgeous piece of art we just had donated?  PPO is humbled by the gift of a singular work of fabric sculpture by Toulie.  The piece is large and calls to mind our work in many beautiful ways, in texture, shape, and sentiment.  We encourage you all to pop in (pick up some condoms) and see this beauty for yourself, please also sign the thank you card in the boardroom for Toulie, let her know how much we all appreciate this gift!

And the work continues!  We have an update in the newsletter from Yasene on the Bridging Services for Women project, and are happy to say that the ORCC has joined the Advisory Committee and will strengthen our reach and training development with the enriched violence and against women context they provide.  Plus, it is very exciting Lauran Cauchy will be leading a Girls Only theatre/identity project with PPO and Christie Lake Kids for the Girls Action Fund soon!  The development is being done now, and by the next newsletter, Lauren will be able to tell you all about how we will be moving with this really cool project which dually seeks to provide an “Insight-like” expressive arts and education experience for vulnerable girls and to assess and participate in the development of a best practices for girls programming with the Girls Action Fund.  We are honoured to be chosen as one of the handful of agencies across the province to collaborate with them on this initiative.

This fall we also welcome the incredible Polly Leonard to our team as the new Volunteer and Client Service Coordinator.  Polly is well known to the Carleton and Reproductive Rights communities as a competent, skilled and committed advocate and feminist.  Polly was a part of the research team that provided us with the first Youth and Sexuality survey PPO did with the Carleton School of Social Work MSW program in 2011-12, and comes to us with incredible context and passion.  We are delighted to have her on the team.  Please make sure you connect with her!  Hailey sends her best and is settling in with a great new job in Whitehorse!

Now is your chance to join the decision making team at PPO, we are recruiting new Board Members!  There are a couple of spots available, and we need committed folks with initiative and a willingness to go the extra mile on board.   If the notes for consideration we have listed below feel like a good fit for you please send me your resume and a letter outlining your interest in joining the Board to director@ppottawa.ca and Rachel will then share it with our Nominations Chair.

Notes to consider among prospective Board Members:
-Directors are expected to attend monthly meetings. Meetings are currently the 3rd of the month: 6pm-8:30pm.
-Total commitment for directors averages between 4-10 hours per month.  Besides monthly meetings, there is an expectation for directors to sit on subcommittees, assist in fundraising and attendance at some fundraising events is strongly recommended.
-Committees are generally assembled ad hoc and can include: Executive, Fundraising, Nominations, Governance, and Standing Committees.  The expectation is on average 2-4 hours per month: dependent on the committee, projects, time of year etc.
-There are some email discussions that occur between meetings. These are usually brief as most business is discussed in person.
-The term is for 2 years. Directors are eligible to sit for 3 consecutive terms.  Although many of life's adventures are unexpected, we ask that directors consider their availability for the 2 year term.
-As a not-for-profit organization, PPO relies heavily on fundraising, the efforts of volunteers and board members are a part of that success.  Support of fundraising efforts is expected from all board members.
-Information on the mandates of PPO and the programs and services offered can be found at www.ppottawa.ca
Thanks to everyone!
Rachel and Andrea