Leigh Borrett

Leigh Borrett is a masters student in the Public Health & Environmental Engineering (PH2E) Lab under the direction and leadership of Dr. Caetano Dorea at the University of Victoria.

With a research  focus on water treatment in emergency context, Leigh has a strong interest in sustainability and climate resilience.

Natalie Buglioni

Natalie is a graduate student in the Master of Public Health Program at Simon Fraser University. She is currently completing a practicum at Vancouver Coastal Health with the Community Engagement team working on projects that aim to increase public participation in health system planning and decision making. 

Natalie has experience working as a research assistant on active transportation research projects and as a HIV/Hep C support and outreach worker. Natalie spends her spare time cooking new recipes and learning Spanish. She hopes to gain experience working on projects with partnerships in Latin America after graduating. 

Maryam Dehnadi

Maryam Dehnadi is a Master of Public Health graduate in the Global Health stream at Simon Fraser University. Maryam has various local and international experiences in assisting vulnerable groups to access timely and appropriate primary health care services. In 2016, Maryam worked as a health promoter for Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) within refugee camps in Athens, Greece. In 2017, she worked for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Malaysia as an intern. At the UNHCR, Maryam was primarily responsible for conducting case management to facilitate access of refugees and migrants to primary and secondary line of care. Maryam’s Master’s final project was examining barriers to accessing primary care services for refugees in British Columbia through an equity lens.

Amanda Egert

Amanda developed an interest in global health (nee international health) at a young age with her family’s involvement in international humanitarian-aid activities and from there, found herself in a variety of countries in Central America, South East Asia, Southern Africa, and Northern Australia.

With an interest in international work, she also pursued a career in nursing (UBC Okanagan) and has worked as a bedside nurse in oncology, surgery, medicine, cardiac telemetry, and high acuity. After moving to Vancouver, Amanda transitioned to a full-time faculty role in the undergraduate nursing program at British Columbia Institute of Technology where she has been for the past 8-years. She has experience teaching in nursing practice (clinical), nursing theory (problem-based learning) and nursing research. Most recently (Summer 2019) Amanda piloted BCIT’s first global health nursing course for the BSN program while also assisting with the BSN program-wide transition to concept-based curriculum.

Currently, Amanda is finishing her Master of Science in Nursing degree (Global Health Stream) at Trinity Western University under the supervision of Dr. Barbara Astle and Dr. Sheryl Reimer-Kirkham. Amanda’s research explores how faculty are prepared to accompany nursing students on international experiences. Her current areas of interest are in global health (local and international), global citizenship, equity, faculty development, and nursing curriculum. She had the privilege of attending the 2017 BCCI in Kelowna. This institute, along with her MSN studies, have caused her to take a reflexive approach to her previous international work and current international interests. She is eager to explore how to pursue a career in global health nursing education and research, while simultaneously enacting important critical concepts of global citizenship and equity.

Rebecca Houweling

Rebecca Houweling is a Pediatric Registered Nurse who is passionate about education and bi-directional learning in the global context.

She has been involved in an agriculture and nutrition project in Guatemala, sex-trafficking prevention and recovery in Nepal, and most recently health care upgrades in Uganda. Rebecca is currently completing her Masters of Science in Nursing at Trinity Western University. 

Tasha Kara

Tasha Kara is a Coordinator at Health Emergency Management BC (HEMBC), a program of the Provincial Health Services Authority. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from McGill University, specializing in International Development and Gender & Sexuality Studies and her current research interests focus on transnational feminism and its intersection with global health. 

With community development at the core of her work, she has previously interned with Campaign for Female Education, a non-profit based in San Francisco, California, worked with Women of Uganda Network in Kampala, Uganda, and volunteered for the Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR) in Montreal. In her spare time, Tasha enjoys good food, watching reruns of Seinfeld, and volunteering at BC Women’s Hospital Foundation.

Mareike Kroll

Mareike is the Health Program Manager at the Artisanal Gold Council (AGC). The AGC works directly with Artisanal and Small Scale Gold mining (ASGM) communities and local experts in Asia, Africa and South America to develop integrated and practical solutions to build an environmentally sound, socially responsible and formalized ASGM sector. The major challenge of the ASGM sector is the use of mercury to recover gold, causing local, regional and global health problems.

Mareike is responsible for overseeing and ensuring the success of a variety of health-related activities across the AGC’s programs. In particular, she is responsible for supporting countries in developing national public health strategies, for developing health curricula for health care professionals, for designing health data collection tools and for producing health reports.

Mareike brings over a decade of work experience in public health and sustainability research in South and South East Asia as well as in policy advice. She received her PhD in health geography in 2012 from the University of Cologne, Germany. Prior to joining AGC, Mareike worked as research fellow at the University of Cologne and, among others, coordinated a research project on health inequities in India and a follow-up knowledge transfer project on surveillance of non-communicable diseases in order to provide evidence-based data for public health policies. She also worked for two years for the German Advisory Council on Global Change (WBGU) and contributed to policy reports on international sustainable development, climate change and health. Furthermore, she is developing teaching material and supervising master students for the distance course “Sustainable Development Cooperation” at the University Kaiserslautern, Germany since 2008.

Takaia Larsen

Takaia Larsen holds a Masters Degree in History from the University of Victoria. She has been teaching History and Peace and Justice Studies courses at Selkirk College for the past 12 years. As a historian, she is most interested in how global events affect people and social structures on a local level.

Most recently, she has also become Co-Coordinator and an instructor in the Rural Pre-Medicine Program at Selkirk. Her work in this program builds on her communication skills as a historian and her understanding of the unique challenges which face rural populations and professionals as they struggle with inequities and access to services.

Disann Katende

Disann Katende is a Mastercard Scholar in his 2nd year of the Master of Public Health at the University of British Columbia with a BSc in Food Science from Makerere University Uganda. He has over five years of nutrition programming with hunger-stricken and migrant communities in humanitarian and development contexts in Uganda. 

He was recently nominated by Chicago Council on Global Affairs as a 2019 Next Generation Delegate on Global Food Security. His passion is finding alternative, sustainable and innovative food systems that focus on problematic nutrients (protein & Iron) to mitigate undernutrition in Sub-Saharan Africa. He also loves to go swimming in the wild.  

Angela McIntyre

Angela McIntyre is of Cree, Scottish and German ancestry and lives and works on the traditional lands of the Saanich, Cowichan and Chemainus Peoples (Salt Spring Island). From 1993 to 2015, she lived in sub-Saharan Africa Mozambique and South Africa), working in the fields of peacekeeping, community development, public health and food security. Angela’s doctoral research focussed on nutrition outcomes of food policy in South Africa’s former homelands (native reserves). She is currently employed as a Senior Specialist at First Nations Health Authority and is also developing a post-doc research proposal on Reconciliation and Indigenous Food System revitalization.

Nicole Moen

A new faculty member for the Nursing department at Douglas College, in Coquitlam British Columbia, Nicole teaches courses and clinics at the undergraduate level. 

With a clinical foundation in emergency and surgical in Canada and Guinea, Nicole took on a leadership nursing role in an Ethiopia surgical hospital. Being stretched in her RN role inspired her to seek out an opportunity to grow in her profession by undertaking a Master of Science in International Public Health at Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, completed in 2018. Nicole carried out a qualitative study in Malawi around policy and current practice of diagnosis and treatment of chronic lung disease. 

Christiana Onabola

Christiana is a Health Policy Analyst, originally, from Nigeria. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacology from the University of Lagos in Nigeria. Having garnered years of experience working in International Health programs in the development sector, she was eager to delve into policy-related projects and wanted to learn more about the rudiments and inner workings of the policy environment. She moved to Vancouver in British columbia, Canada, in 2016 and completed a Master of Public Policy and Global Affairs at the University of British Columbia in May of 2018. While at UBC, she was a Sustainability Scholar and spent two summers doing health-related field research internships in BC Fraser Health Authority and the BC Hydro under the UBC Sustainability Scholar program. In August of 2018, she moved to Prince George in British Columbia, to start a ‘PhD in Health Sciences’ program at the University of Northern British Columbia. Her current research draws on the settings-based approach in Health Promotion in localizing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and exploring the scalar and spatial dimensions of settings at a watershed scale to aid understanding of how to address potential conflicts among the goals, and resultant vulnerabilities and inequities in health outcomes in local communities.

Raluca Radu

Raluca is a registered nurse and a current graduate student at the University of British Columbia enrolled in the final year of the Master of Science in Nursing program. Starting in September, Raluca is focusing her final graduate research on integrating environmental health topics, particularly those related to climate change & human health into undergraduate nursing education. Through attending the BC Coalition Institute, Raluca hopes to increase her understanding of how planetary health influences human health, and most importantly what are the ways through which health care providers such as nurses can contribute to improving care of the population in their communities and beyond.

Equally, Raluca is passionate about global health and leadership. She is hopeful to work with the World Health Organization and the International Council of Nurses in the health policy realm. In her spare time Raluca is an avid traveller and is looking forward to seeing Belgium for the first time this September. 

Claire Remington

Claire is a master’s student in the Public Health & Environmental Engineering (PH2E) Lab at the University of Victoria. Her research explores the design of sustainable sanitation systems from three different but complementary perspectives: lab-based environmental engineering work to characterize fresh faeces, big-picture desk-based research looking at the flow of nitrogen through global agriculture and sanitation systems, and the installation of a composting toilet on the UVic campus. She communicates through these varied perspectives that sanitation is a global issue; the design of sanitation systems that 1) protects public health and 2) stewards sustainable water and biogeochemical cycles is an urgent priority for both developing and developed country contexts.

Previously, she was engaged in economic, geographic, and public health analyses of SOIL’s household sanitation service in Cap Haitien, Haiti. (For more information:

Catherine Smith

Catherine Smith is an Assistant Professor at the University of the Fraser Valley and works as a casual RN in ICU at Fraser Health. Catherine relocated to Canada from the UK three years ago. Catherine is the Vice Chair and Director of Scottish charity “ReSurge Africa”. Catherine is also a co-counsel for the NGO “Care Canada”. Catherine’s professional experience includes Intensive Care Nursing, Emergency Nursing, Clinical Nurse Education, Research & Audit and Leadership & Management at the National Health Service, UK. 

Catherine has a long-standing relationship with the community in Sierra Leone since 2011. She lived in the country for two years volunteering as a nurse educator. Catherine oversees the operational projects for ReSurge Africa in Sierra Leone with the focus of setting up Sierra Leonne’s first burns and reconstructive surgery service at the local hospital. This includes strengthening of the infrastructure through training & development of the staff, mentoring staff, supporting Capital projects and managing the Monitoring & Evaluation program. Catherine works closely with the local partners and the Ministry of Health & Sanitation in Sierra Leone.

Catherine has an ongoing affiliation with the Nursing School in Sierra Leone. Catherine helped set up the Clinical Skills Lab, Computer Centre and the Library at the Nursing School. Catherine also works in partnership with the Sierra Leone Nurses Association & NGOs with the ongoing professional development training for the Registered Nurse.

Nicole Spence


Nicole Spence is a Coordinator at Health Emergency Management BC (HEMBC), a Public Health Services Authority program that provides emergency management and leadership, and an editor for the Canadian Risks and Hazards Network magazine, HazNet.

She holds a BA in Psychology and a Graduate Diploma in Public Health from the University of Victoria, with a focus on International and Global Health and Development, and is starting a MSc of Disaster Healthcare this fall. She is interested in the effects of globalization and climate change on global health and its link to emergency management. Nicole is of Scottish and German heritage and resides on unceded Coast Salish territory. On the weekends, Nicole can be found in the local mountains sharing her favourite rosé or vin chaud with fellow alpinists.

Krishna Todi

Krishna’s background consists of an undergraduate degree in Pharmacy followed by a year’s work experience in Business Analytics. Presently, she is a Master’s candidate in Public Health with a concentration in Global Health at Simon Fraser University.

She is currently finishing a practicum component of her course at Vancouver Coastal Health working with the my Health my Community (MHMC) project team, trying to understanding the barriers/gaps in reaching out to vulnerable populations and developing strategies to better reach out to them. She is doing this through literature reviews, informant interviews and survey development for vulnerable population-serving organizations. With the ever-increasing need for planetary health research and its impacts on health, she aims to gain a strong basis and understanding of the concept and its linkage to human health.

Zeena Yesufu

Zeena Yesufu is a 2nd year Master of Public Health student at the University of British Columbia. She holds a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery degree from Nigeria and has three years’ experience working in Health Care Development and Health Systems Consulting.

Her interests are in finding innovate ways to address healthcare inequalities in low- and middle-income countries. Her experience in designing and implementing health care programs in Nigeria’s underserved communities has helped her make the connection to global health research in British Columbia, contributing to her ultimate goal of ensuring sustainable health care systems for all.

Yue Yuan

Ms. Yue Yuan just graduated with a master’s degree in public health from Simon Fraser University, and currently working at the emergency medicine department at University of British Columbia. Her research interests in climate change and planetary health were sparked during her time working in Ethiopia and Belgium. Ms. Yuan looks forward to gaining better understanding of the fields through session presentations, group discussions, and conversations with other health professionals and experts.

Ngozi-Joe Ikechebelu

Ngozi Joe-Ikechebelu is sub-Saharan African woman, wife and mother from Nigeria. She is in the graduate program of Social Dimensions of Health at University of Victoria. Presently, she works on intersecting socio-structural issues that affects sub-Saharan African women living with HIV in BC and equity-centred local solutions to climate change in BC and Global South. Ngozi is a member of the Canadian Coalition for Global Health Research (CCGHR) since 2017. With her Medical background, she practised at the public and private levels in Nigeria using her background in Community Medicine and Primary Health Care (now Preventive Medicine). She holds aFellowship with National Post graduate Medical College Nigeria; a Master of Public Health, University of Nigeria; and Master of Science in International Health Management and Development, University of Birmingham, UK.

Matthew Little

Matt is an Assistant Professor in the School of Public Health and Social Policy at the University of Victoria in Victoria, BC, Canada. He conducts research on Global, First Nations, and Inuit health, community food security, nutrition-related non-communicable diseases, food systems and environments, ecological determinants of health, climate change and health, and environmental contaminants in food sources.

Matilde Cervante

Matty has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s in Psychotherapy. She was the general coordinator of the International Ceremony for the PAX (peace) Flag in Baja California Sur, which was delivered by the international committee of the Pax flag NGO- ONU in 2006.

Currently, Matty is a graduate student at the University of Victoria in the program of Social Dimensions of Health, as well as a research assistant and a project assistant. She is a volunteer in the Human Rights Education Program and works in the Social Justice Studies as an outreach assistant. Her research theme is on Social Health and Emotions for caregivers of people with dementia. She has been collaborating with the project Voices in Motion; an inter-generational choir for people with dementia and their caregivers.

Mira Ziolo

Mira is a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, currently doing a PhD at UBC. She is a CCGHR (SYP) member, was an active participant in the recent BCCI-2 and is a member of the University of Victoria discussion group on global health research. She has extensive experience in Africa (mainly Rwanda and Uganda).

Regiane Garcia

David Giesbrecht

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