We are a union of upward rising forward think women who have a burning desire to enjoy working at we love and helping others in the process. Our community is continually expanding. Here are our founding members and some of our associates…
Brandi Perron – Program designer, Public Speaker, Blogger
I discovered early on that I found inspiration in places least likely to be icons of inspiration. I found that in times of trouble, people were the most honest and the most resourceful despite feeling at their most vulnerable and often lowest points. When people are suffering, they have the ability to wipe away all the unnecessary and draw on strengths they likely don’t even know they have. They are raw and desperate – They are wide open. Some of the most beautiful people I have met revealed themselves in times of unfathomable circumstances. These experiences have taught me to look carefully in times when all others would look away.
I have been a social worker for 15 years and have had the privilege to work with hundreds of people in some of their lowest times and it has changed the way I view the world at large and my own piece of it. I was honored to support young families with new babies through a program called Healthy Families. I was mentored and trained to become a facilitator of family and youth programming with a special passion for families struggling through Child Services and court mandated programming. I landed at a Social Service organiztion almost 6 years ago and worked in a program called that brought professional and natural supports together with an emphasis on family participation and bonding. In August of 2013, I transferred to High River in the wake of the devastating flood on June 20, 2013 to support community rebuilding in the temporary new neighborhood where flood victims were relocated. There is something very humbling about doing what you know best in a situation where you know absolutely nothing. Again, despite the enormous losses here, I have never been afforded the insight to so much compassion and kindness as these last 5 months.
Along the way, I have taught suicide intervention classes to professionals and community partnerships and presented countless workshops on self awareness, self care and perspective. I have long been influenced and passionate about research based programming with shades of eastern philosophies. Those resiliencies and inner strengths that simply cannot be taught but just need to be coaxed into our awareness. I believe that most people hold the answers and ability for wellness and just need to be reminded of their greatness through these busy and congested lives we live. My philosophy and passion is all about perspective and coaching anyone who is ready on how to use it to create meaningful change in their life.
Ti Foster ~ Art Direction, Marketing Director, Photo Blogger
For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved art and creating. I have always found comfort in using my hands to make something. Although I majored in sciences in college, over the course of time, I’ve explored various art mediums, including painting, textile arts, clay sculpture and costume design. Upon moving to Calgary I simply couldn’t resist taking classes in the Metals Program at Alberta College of Art and Design, where I studied under Charles Lewton-Brain and artist Jeff De Boer. Shortly after I began making jewelry, and quickly recognized innate love and an attraction to the power of stones and crystals. I have participated in Body Ornament West, the Opera Coat Project and named the solo artist for the Afrikadey 2005 Festival in Calgary. In addition I’ve been fortunate to have my work appear in several magazines including Coastal Living, “Where in Calgary”, and Style Canada, and the Calgary Herald Alberta Artist Series. Early on I could see the positive effects various stones had on my clients. That led me to pursue a certification as a Color and Crystal therapist in order to create jewelry as beautiful healing tools. This has grown into designing custom therapeutic jewelry for my clients.
My personal experience and observation of the lightness of spirit in others engaged in arts led me to focus on the beneficial power of simple creative expression and propelled me to open my studio to teach workshops. It also inspired me to invite other teachers to share their knowledge with people who want to explore their creativity, or discover new things in a positive healing environment.
I’ve taught art in-house as well at the Cerebral Palsy Association in Alberta and will begin teaching at other venues while offering studio workshops in variety of mediums. Currently I’m completing my certification in Clinical Aromatherapy and Art Education for the Elderly. Assisting people to feel healthier, happier and less stressed and showing them how to implement simple practices in their lives is extremely heart filling and rewarding.
There is something incomparable to being in the company of supportive women. The most difficult parts of my journey were those times when I felt alone. Finding support, sharing experiences and the sheer pleasure of being able to laugh with other women saved my sanity as well as gave me strength to continue. I want to bring the same level of support, empowerment and resources to other females. Working at something you love with people you care about is more like a play date every day. I count myself as incredibly fortunate to be working with women who share the same vision to make a positive change in lives of others
Kim Coulter – Art Direction, Teacher
I can’t remember a time that I didn’t have a pencil or brush in my hand. Drawing and painting, became a source of joy, and at times a place of solace, escape and of life. Regardless of whatever changes have taken place on my journey, some form of art has remained my constant companion.
When my children were very young, I found my life taking on a whole new direction as a single parent. I was lucky enough to be given the opportunity to become the Art Director at my children’s pre-school; Bowmont Community Preschool. Coming from a family rich in teachers, I found myself immersed in creating projects that I hoped would instill in these amazing young people, the love for art that I had grown with.
I soon found myself in a 15 year relationship with the Boys and Girls Club as both a volunteer and worker, designing art camps and mural camps throughout the agency. I also began exploring an interest in Color Theory and our emotional relationship with color, specifically the lack of consideration placed on these values in educational settings. With the encouragement of the Boys and Girls Club and my children’s school- Belvedere-Parkway Elementary, I developed a “School Beautification Project” manned with parent volunteers and solicited the support of General Paints in free product and material donations. Throughout the years, I have designed and implemented many curriculum based workshops for K-grade six city-wide. A very rich and rewarding career working with amazing young people indeed!
With school board support, I organized a total of three Calgary schools and five Boys and Girls Clubs. My training and combined with my experiences in art development with children of all ages led Belvedere-Parkway School to offer me a position as an Educational Assistant for Behavioral and Special Needs students. Seven of the last years were spent working with an amazing young man named Jakob, who has Downs Syndrome. At his age of almost 13, I have learned more from him than any one person in my life. I am blessed to call him my friend. Nothing for me has been more rewarding in understanding the power of art in giving a voice to a silence, move a soul or evoke a smile or tears.
Now is the chapter of my life where I’ve earned some “me exploration” time with other women who share like-minded and diverse interests. I’m so excited to be connected with this amazing group of women and share in the complexities and joys of life through workshops and retreats that enlighten your mind, feed your spirit and embrace the creative soul in all of us!