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Cornerstone event: April Workshop

At this inspiring all-day workshop, you will learn the importance and power of your voice, why women, queer, trans, and non-binary people speaking up matters and, most importantly, how to make change. You will connect with like-minded young people as well as adults who care about gender equality and investing in young women and young people.

Making Waves was co-founded by Avery Simard when she was 17 years old, as a way to build an intergenerational community of women who care about equality, especially gender equality. Young people have input into every aspect of Making Waves. It is inspiring, content-rich, energizing, and impactful. Your time is valuable, and your voice is important. Let’s make the most of them:

• Shari Graydon, catalyst of Informed Opinions, will share stories and research to make clear why your voice matters, why we need to speak up, and how to do so effectively.

• How are Education, Housing, Climate, Gender Based Violence, Daycare, Marriage and Politics related? Experienced advocates, including students, will show you different ways of speaking up and how their work is about equality

• Dr Bonnie Larson is a physician who has a deep understanding of the opiod crisis and its impact on Albertans, especially those who are unhoused. Together we will learn about health equity and deconstruct the language being used around the crisis to get better informed.

• Shannon Norberg, co-owner of art gallery Norberg Hall, works to advance gender equality for artists, and will lead a tour on gender equality through the art collection at Bennett Jones.

• Dr. Rupinder Toor will inform us about her work to provide free universal contraception to all Canadians and why it matters.


Draft Agenda 

9:30 Doors Open, Jones Boardroom, Bennett Jones. Light Breakfast

10:00 Shari Graydon, Informed Opinions

11:45 Equality Panel

1:00 Lunch, Gender Equality Art Tour with Shannon Norberg + Art

1:30 Gender Equality Art Tour with Shannon Norberg + Art

2:00 Collective Action

2:30 Dr Bonnie Larson: Working in 

4:00 Take the Mic

4:30 Farewell

• Food and beverages provided.

• Water is available all day.

• Bring something to take notes with.

• Wifi is free.


There will be lots of opportunities to learn, to connect, and to practice speaking up.

Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, including Bennett Jones and The Calgary Foundation, as well as a dedicated group of supporters, the workshop is FREE!

We don’t ask for resumes, auditions, requirements--just your time and interest.

For all young women, non-binary, trans, and gender diverse individuals aged 14-24.

Inaugural Work Shop: April 2019


The very first Making Waves Workshop was held in the stunning board room of Bennett Jones, and was attended by 50 young women and supported by 20 accomplished adult women.  It was an inspirational and magical day! Shari Graydon of Informed Opinions held a 2 hour workshop, which was followed by a catered lunch. The afternoon started with a panel of young women who shared their experiences, concerns and aspirations for the future, and invited the participants to take the mic and join the conversation.  For the final session 10 adult women told their stories of agency, in a fast-paced style.  Interspersed throughout the day were opportunities to practice networking and building a support network.  Created by and for young women, the day was a massive success.



Photo credit: Monique de St.Croix
Photo credit: Monique de St.Croix

Making Waves goes virtual

April 2020

Weeks before the April 2020 workshop, planned with an entire new group of young wavemakers, the pandemic swept the world. Our young wavemakers insisted the workshop take place, as everything else was being cancelled. We quickly adjusted and created a concise and impactful 3.5 hour online Zoom event. This was an astonishing success! 

When it was safe, we organized a responsibly planned, outdoor, in-person event. In this year of covid, we decided to keep connected, to keep going with Making Waves. We created new and exciting opportunities to practice speaking up. 

We also expanded by adding committee members from St. Albert and Toronto. We are proud of these changes and will continue to adapt to keep making waves!

Sign up today!
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