Celebrating Resilience through Stories of Newcomer Women in Canada

Celebrating Resilience through Stories of Newcomer Women in Canada

Photograph of eight women from diverse backgrounds posing together in front of a tan-coloured backdrop.

For Immediate Release

Media Contact:

Sangeetha Nair
Email: SNair@CareerTrek.ca
Phone: (204) 588-8310

Winnipeg, MB (June 11, 2024) – Join us for a heartwarming and inspiring event at the Manitoba Museum where women from five countries and across different continents share their stories of courage, resilience, and transformation as they began new lives in Canada.

“Pathways: Stories of How We Got Here” is a storytelling and performance project aimed at empowering newcomer women by improving their communication skills, fostering community, and building capacity as mentors and leaders.

Under the guidance of writing coach Patle Creary and performance coach Rachel Smith, participants spent 12 weeks crafting and refining their stories for a live audience.

“Audiences can expect to feel a sense of upliftment through the power of storytelling and the joy that these women bring despite the challenges they have experienced,” said Creary.

Participant Viktoriia Bulat from Ukraine said this opportunity is a dream come true. “Even as a teenager, I imagined myself as a cool journalist or writer. So when I saw a post on Facebook about the project, I was inspired to apply”.

“This will be the first time in my life that I will be performing in front of a live audience. But the coaching I received makes me feel I am not afraid of anything.”

Jeanette Perez on the other hand is no stranger to live performances. The ukelele player and mother of three hopes to “encourage others to learn a skill and multiply the joy of being able to sing and play simple songs”.

Perez will be performing “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” as part of her story.

Showtimes are at 1:00 pm on Saturday June 22 and Sunday June 23 and will also include an opening and closing performance by Rodrigo Muñoz and Amber Epp of Latin jazz band, Papa Mambo.


Tickets are $10 each and can be purchased from the Manitoba Museum website, here.

Text-base logo reading,
Manitoba Museum logo.

Meet the Storytellers:

Sarah Cayas graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing and theatre arts. She holds certificates in management and ESL teaching and pursues life coaching. Sarah is a newcomer, indigenous youth employment facilitator, and online mentor. She hopes to inspire immigrants through her experiences and expertise.

Story Title: S.C.A.L.E.

Summary: S.C.A.L.E. stands for Smart, Confident, Adventurous, Learning, and Excited. In this short story, Sarah shares how her digital scale helps her weigh her options as she takes on life’s many journeys with grace and faith.


Mariam Yide immigrated to Canada 13 years ago. Before the COVID pandemic, she worked as a healthcare aide with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority. Mariam is a mother to two sons and looks forward to starting a new career.

Story Title: My Life Memory Tree

Summary: Mariam’s pathway has always been lined with trees. In this story, she celebrates trees as sources of sustenance and symbols of transition and rebirth.


(Emily) Fangyan Zheng has a Bachelor of Arts in Chinese Language and Literature Education. Fangyan immigrated to Canada from China in May 2011. For seven and a half years, she ran a motel in Hadashville, Manitoba. Now, she is a Chinese teacher and tutor at a non-profit Chinese school in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Fangyan is married and has a son who works in Toronto.

Story Title: Full Circle

Summary: Fangyan Zheng tells the story of her transition from Chinese immigrant to language teacher. Her story invites us to consider immigration and transition as a full circle that respects the past and the present while being hopeful for the future.


Paula Caracini was born in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil. She immigrated to Canada in 2021 with her husband and two daughters. Paula studied Psychology and built her career in counselling and as a Career Coach. She loves writing, reading, and learning new things.

Story Title: A Passport to Dreams

Summary: Paula’s passport has opened doors to the life she envisioned for herself and her family. In this story, she shares how a simple green booklet embodies her formal and informal identity.


Jeanette Perez immigrated from the Philippines in 2015 with a master’s in management engineering. She currently works in Marketing for a company in Winnipeg. Jeanette holds key positions in non-profit organizations that promote Filipino culture and heritage through music and arts. She is married and has three children and a granddaughter.

Story Title: Saturdays with U (Ukulele)

Summary: Jeanette has a unique ukulele. In this story, she shares how the musical instrument helped her to honour her mother and brother while growing her community and self-confidence with the gift of music and song. As part of her story, Jeanette will also be performing “Somewhere over the Rainbow”.


Genelyn Navarro is an employment outreach facilitator who merges her social work, public administration, and business administration (HR) expertise to empower youth. Passionate about community development, Genelyn channels her knowledge to mentor and support young individuals, fostering their growth and success in the professional world.

Story Title: Pamana (Inheritance)

Summary: Pamana is a Tagalog word which means inheritance. In this story, Genelyn Navarro celebrates the legacy of her parents’ unwavering belief in higher education and the spirit of community and volunteerism that she brings to every space she calls home.


Viktoria Bulat was born in Khmelnytskyi, Ukraine. She holds a master’s degree in journalism and volunteers at the “U Multicultural” channel and the Health Science Centre’s Children’s Hospital. Viktoria came to Winnipeg in November 2022 after spending three and a half years in Milan, Italy. She is married, and her daughter is now one year old.

Story Title: A Lullaby in Four Parts

Summary: Viktoria tells a story about finding her feet after years of disruption and displacement. Her anchor was motherhood, propelling her and her husband to journey to Canada.


Tetiana Lushpaienko is from the Ukrainian city of Odesa. She has a master’s degree in economics and had built a great career in the jewelry industry there. Tetiana came to Canada two years ago with her six-year-old son and only two suitcases. She now lives in Winnipeg with her family, where she continues her passion for working with diamonds and gems.

Story Title: My Onyx Talisman

Summary: Onyx symbolizes strength, confidence, and perseverance. In this story, Tetiana shares how her connection to the jewel helped her remember who she was before the war in Ukraine began and how wearing it helped her return to the lifestyle she worked hard to achieve.


“Pathways: Stories of How We Got Here” is a collaboration of 16 Winnipeg nonprofits working together as a Steering Committee to support these incredible women.

To schedule interviews with any of the participants or coaches, please contact Sangeetha Nair at 204-588-8310 or SNair@CareerTrek.ca.


Connect with Pathways:

Website: www.PathwaysWinnipeg.ca

Facebook: @PathwaysWinnipeg

Instagram: @PathwaysWinnipeg

Museum Week – World Oceans Day

This week is Museum Week and today’s theme, Water, coincides with World Oceans Day! Join Mika in the Science Gallery as she shares about our oceans’ important role in combatting climate change.

“Climate change refers to long-term shifts in temperatures and weather patterns. Human activities have been the main driver of climate change, primarily due to burning fossil fuels like coal, oil and gas.” – United Nations

Note: This video contains the popping of a balloon.

Museum Week – Behind the Scenes

Toad surveying, mummifying carrots, hosting conferences, researching artifacts and specimens, and more! It’s the first day of Museum Week and today’s theme is Behind the Scenes. Let’s see what some of the Museum team is up to!

Winnipeg 150: City of Water

Water has been a major influence on the development of Winnipeg throughout its 150-year history. Learn about our rivers, floods, and drinking water in this video from the Winnipeg Gallery with Dr. Roland Sawatzky.

This series celebrating Winnipeg’s 150th anniversary is ongoing throughout 2024, so keep an eye out for more #Wpg150 videos!

DYK Pronghorns are related to… Giraffes?

Pronghorns are sometimes called Antelope because of their visual similarities, but recent research shows they’re actually more closely related to Giraffes! In this video, learn more about this unique animal with Dr. Randy Mooi in the Prairies Gallery.

Do you know how many artifacts are in this room?

Many Museum visitors will remember Madame Taro’s room in the Winnipeg 1920 Cityscape, but do you know how many artifacts are in this room?

In this video Cortney takes us inside to learn about some of the updates that have been made to the space, and the amazing artifacts it displays!

Travel back in time when you visit the Winnipeg 1920 Cityscape in the Winnipeg Gallery!

Plan your visit today

Researching a Chinese Alcove Bed

This amazing Chinese alcove bed was donated to the Museum about five years ago, and we recently had a chance to set it up and get some beautiful documentation photos taken.

Find out about some of the research being done on the bed and take a closer look at the details in this video with Curator of History Dr. Roland Sawatzky!

‘Manidoo Miiniigooizowin: A Gift from the Creator’ Special Opening Reception

A promo image for exhibit 'Manidoo Miiniigooizowin: A Gift from the Creator'. On a bright blue background to the left, below a large

Members of the media are invited to the Manitoba Museum where the Southern Chiefs’ Organization (SCO) are hosting a special reception to celebrate the opening of Manidoo Miiniigooizowin, A Gift from the Creator.

Manidoo Miiniigooizowin is a new curated exhibition that honours the beauty and resilience of the Anishinaabe and Dakota peoples of southern Manitoba while also commemorating SCO’s 25th anniversary.

The exhibit is the first of several events SCO has planned to recognize and celebrate our 25 years of advocacy and service.

SCO Grand Chief Jerry Daniels along with exhibition co-curators Amanda McLeod (Sagkeeng Anicinabe First Nation) and Dr. Amelia Fay will be available for interviews.

The following exhibition contributors will be in attendance and are able to speak with media: Nicole Bester (Sagkeeng Anicinabe First Nation); Alexis Houle (Sandy Bay Ojibway First Nation); Danielle Roulette (Lake Manitoba First Nation); Jenna Valiquette (Poplar River First Nation); and Kim McPherson and Gerri-Lee Pangman (Peguis First Nation). Click on their names to learn more about their contributions to the exhibition.


Date: Thursday, May 16, 2024
Time: 5 to 7 pm
Where: Manitoba Museum, 190 Rupert Avenue, Winnipeg



The Southern Chiefs’ Organization represents 34 First Nations and more than 87,000 citizens in what is now called southern Manitoba. SCO is an independent political organization that protects, preserves, promotes, and enhances First Nations peoples’ inherent rights, languages, customs, and traditions through the application and implementation of the spirit and intent of the Treaty-making process.


For media inquiries:

Email: Media@scoinc.mb.ca

Meet the Cowbird!

What is a “brood parasite”? Find out in this video with Learning & Engagement Producer Erin, as he tells us about a ‘piggybacking’ bird.

Learn more about fascinating Manitoba birds in the Prairies Gallery!

Plan your visit today

Collections for Community: A New Access Initiative

Last year the Manitoba Museum piloted a new program to provide community members increased access to Museum collections. Weekday appointments to view collections are sometimes difficult for folks who work full-time or are enrolled in school. This program was developed through discussions with artists, makers, and interested community members. We decided on a free open-access event on a weekend, one where people could sign up and come and spend a few hours looking at many items cared for in storage, rather than on display in the Museum galleries.

Since the majority of the HBC and Anthropology Collections are of First Nations, Métis, or Inuit origin, we structured the initial sessions with preference given to individuals who self-identify as Indigenous. Due to tight collections storage spaces, we kept each session to a maximum of 10 participants. A smaller group setting created a nice, intimate learning environment for discussion, and enabled us to move freely within collection storage as a group.

A small group of individuals surrounding an open drawer to closer view the objects stored inside.

Participants exploring the Anthropology Collection. ©Manitoba Museum

An open drawer containing twelve intricately beaded and quilled wall pockets and bags, laid out carefully for storage.

One of many drawers within the HBC Museum Collection featuring wall pockets with beadwork and quillwork. ©Manitoba Museum

For these sessions we brought in skilled artists to discuss the objects with the group and to share learning experiences in traditional artistic techniques. We were very fortunate to feature Jennine Krauchi and Cynthia Boehm at our first session, and Tashina Houle-Schlup and Cheyenne Schlup for the second session. All four of these artists are not only incredibly skilled with beadwork, embroidery, and quillwork in their own artistic practices, but also knowledgeable on historic pieces within the Museum’s collections. Participants were able to learn so much through this collaborative structure with community artists and makers.

A small group of individuals standing beside a selection of artifacts laid out on a countertop next to an interior window.

Cheyenne Schlup sharing knowledge with participants (note his beautiful work in the background). ©Manitoba Museum

A small group of individuals surrounding an open drawer to closer view the objects stored inside.

Artist Jennine Krauchi shows session participants several beautifully beaded artifacts stored with care ©Manitoba Museum

Based on the success of this program last year, we hope to offer 3-4 more sessions in the upcoming year, featuring different artists to share these wonderful collections with interested community members.  If you’re interested in participating, keep your eyes on the Museum’s website and social media for the next session!

Don’t miss out on our special Mother’s Day tour From Talk to Table: Indigenous Motherhood on May 12. This tour explores parenting throughout time on Turtle Island and includes include an in-depth tour of Indigenous artifacts in the Museum Galleries and behind-the-scenes.

Dr. Amelia Fay

Dr. Amelia Fay

Curator of Anthropology & the HBC Museum Collection

Amelia Fay is Curator of Anthropology and the HBC Museum Collection at the Manitoba Museum. She received her BA in Anthropology from the University of Manitoba (2004), an MA in Archaeology…
Meet Dr. Amelia Fay