Devan Nambiar is a Canadian award-winning, integrated healthcare expert and global humanitarian. Devan has trained staff at more than 500 organizations, and has shared his knowledge in these fields with an estimated 200,000 people on a regional, national and international level.
Haran Vijayanathan has over 16 years of experience working in the non-profit sector on diversity, cultural sensivity, social justice and advocacy with an intersectional cultural lens. He has been facilitating education and training for health care and social service staff in in the area of HIV, 2SLGBTQ+, under housed and shelters, suicide prevention, and advocacy for vulnerable and marginalized populations in healthcare and social service sectors across Ontario. Haran was the 2018 Grand Marshal for Toronto Pride.
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Devan, who has a MSc. in Integrated Healthcare from University of Central Lancashire, and graduate diploma in Addictions and Mental Health Educations from McMaster University, has provided training and education on sexual and gender minorities (2SLGBTQ+), cultural and clinical competencies and Integrative Medicine since 1996. Devan has trained staff at more than 500 organizations, and has shared his knowledge in these fields with an estimated 200,000 people on a regional, national and international level.
Devan’s training includes an intersectional lens on diversity and 2SLGBTQ+; Anti-oppression and Anti-racism; policy review and analysis; organizational development and inclusivity, HIV treatment education; and Integrative Medicine. Devan’s education in addictions and mental health provides a rich intersectional depth to utilize various counselling techniques such as Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Solution Focused and Motivational Interviewing when working collaboratively with 2SLGBTQ+ clients and/orpatients. He speaks five languages and works with an intersectional lens to deliver training and education to healthcare and social service providers, allied healthcare practitioners, educational institutions, researchers, governments, for profit and not for profit organizations and policy analysts.
Devan was also involved in international health and humanitarian work between 1998-2002. He initiated CareShed Project, a drug recycling program for HIV-positive women and children at the Government Hospital of Thoracic Medicine in TambaramSanatorium, Chennai, India. At Care Shed Project, he funded raised monies to built an outdoor facility for families of patients to cook food for their loved ones and a place to rest after a long travel to the hospital. In 2002, he was the recipient of the honor roll award from the Ontario AIDS Network. In 2006, he received the Canadian AIDS Society Leadership Award.
In 2015, he co-wrote an education module for healthcare providers, Cancer Screening and LGBTQ Communities. Prior to this and during his 10-year stint at the Canadian AIDS Treatment Information Exchange, Devan co-authored four national publications. These include A Practical Guide to Complementary Medicine, A Practical Guide to Herbal Therapies for PHAS (CATIE, 2004), Practical Guide to Nutrition for PHAS (CATIE, 2007) and Managing Your Health (CATIE, 2009).
In terms of research, he was one of the Co-investigators of the national Trans*Needs Assessment Project at the Canadian AIDS Society (2013-2015) and also coordinated a research study called Mobilizing Ethno–racial Communities against HIV Stigma and Discrimination, Committee for Accesible AIDS Treatment, Ontario HIV Treatment Network(2009). In addition, Devan was a Co-principal investigator of Improving the Capacity of the HIV Sector to respond to the Ethno-Racial MSM: Tapping Front-Line Expertise and Wisdom, Ontario HIV Treatment Network (2007-2008).
Devan is a guest lecturer on cultural and clinical competencies to provide inclusive care to 2SLGBTQ+ clients and patients. He lectures at PGY2 Residents. Family Medicine, Queen’s University, Kingston and Family and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto; Brock University; University of Waterloo. Kitchener; George Brown Activation Coordinator,Gerontology program, George Brown College; Psychology Internship/Residency Programs. CPA Accredited Doctoral Internship; and Canadian College of Chiropractic Medicine, Toronto. He has served on numerous boards, committees, and Ethics Review Board at University of Toronto and Community Research Initiative of Toronto.
Further details on Devan’s career are at Linkedin https://www.linkedin.com/in/devan-nambiar-83177811/
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Through his fund raising and successful grant applications, Haran is the founder of My House: Rainbow Resources of York Region. My House is the home and resource for sexual and gender minority youth in the York region. In his professional life he is the Executive Director of the Alliance for South Asian AIDS Prevention (ASAAP). ASAAP is the only AIDS Service Organization serving the South Asian community in Ontario and in Canada. Haran is committed to ensuring that access to essential services are available to those who identify as 2SLGBTTIQ+ and others from traditionally marginalized communities, in a non-judgmental, knowledgeable and safe environment within the communities they live.
MN, NP-PHC, ACRN., considers herself an “old nurse” of 29 years and a “newer nurse practitioner” of 6 years. Her primary health care practice at St Michael’s Hospital Academic Family Health Team is comprised of patients from diverse, at-risk, hidden and vulnerable populations, including people living with HIV and transgender/gender diverse persons.
Radha Bhardwaj is the Founder and Director of banyan tree circles. With 20 years of non-profit leadership experience and growing successful organizations, Radha is a skilled facilitator with experience in building inclusion and equity, organizational development, health promotion, trauma-informed practices, and curriculum development.
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Radha uses stories and evidence to connect audiences to social causes at a deep level to drive social change and create alignment between diverse groups.
As a former Executive Director of two non-profit organizations, Radha led both organizations to diversify funding sources, expand programs for under-served populations and built meaningful collaborations across sectors. She is an activist with a strong belief in linking local to global issues, and successfully works on international projects to link resources across borders.
Radha currently teaches in the Bachelor of Community Mental Health Program and the Social Service Work Program at Seneca College. Radha holds a Master of Social Work degree from University of Toronto, a Master of Public Health degree from University of Waterloo and is a trained yoga instructor.
Visit https://banyantreecircles.com/ to learn more.
Praney Anand, M.A. graduated from San Francisco State University with a Master’s degree in Human Sexuality Studies and a Master’s diploma in Healthcare Administration. His additional qualifications include sex educator certification through the San Francisco Sex Information (SFSI), and similar certification in somatic sexology from the Institute of Advanced Study of Human Sexuality, also in San Francisco.
Ed Kucharski is a Regional Primary Care Lead (Toronto Central LHIN, South) for Cancer Care Ontario and the Toronto Central Regional Cancer Program. He is also a practicing Family Physician at South East Toronto Family Health Team.
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His research background includes several research projects such as the Gay Couples Study and Gay Dads Study in San Francisco, and as a Research Coordinator for a gbMSM research project, Momentum Health Study at British Columbia Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS, Vancouver. These projects looked at cultural, social, relationship and health aspects of single and coupled gay/queer men. At Project Prepare, Praney taught medical students at University of California, San Francisco; Stanford University and Touro University California and Nevada on conducting comfortable and effective sexual health exams including delivering culturally sensitive and appropriate sex education to cis and trans patients.
In his current position, at the Alliance for South Asian AIDS Prevention, Praney works as the Men’s Outreach Coordinator where in addition to one-on-on education sessions, he hosts support groups in Peel, York and Durham regions for South Asian GBTQ+ men. Praney is currently completing his studies in Master of Arts in Counselling Psychology and a Board Member on Punjabi Community Health Services.
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In 2013 Ed was the recipient of both the Association of Family Health Team’s “Bright Lights Award – Improving the Health of the 5%” and the University of Toronto’s Department of Family and Community Medicine Excellence in Community Teaching Award. In 2015 Ed was recognized by The Change Foundation as one of Ontario’s 20 Faces of Change for innovative and patient-centered initiatives to improve cancer screening in LGBTQ, newcomer and homeless populations.
Ed holds his Doctorate in Medicine from the University of Ottawa and completed his residency in Family Medicine at the University of Toronto. He is on faculty at the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto.
Edward Kucharski, MD, CCFP
Family Physician, South East Toronto Family Health Team
CCO Regional Primary Care Lead, Toronto Regional Cancer Program (South)
Chair, Cancer Care Committee, College of Family Physicians of Canada
Lecturer, University of Toronto Department of Family and Community Medicine
Sharp Dopler, MA, CD., is agokwe-nini (two-spirit person) who has been an educator, community worker and activist for over 20 years. Sharp is originally from Newfoundland and is of Tsalagi/Meshkwakie/Ashkwakie and Irish descent.
Giselle is a proud parent of three unique and diverse adult children, one of whom identifies as gay, another identifies as transgender, and the third identifies as straight.
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Sharp has facilitated workshops and groups at various venues at the local, regional, provincial, national, and international level on topics including but not limited to: Cultural Competency, History of Indigenous People in Canada, Two-spirit issues, Decolonisation, HIV/STI’s Healthy Sexuality, Anti-Oppression and Anti-Bullying. Sharp is honoured to be considered a Traditional Knowledge Keeper and carrier of Ceremony. Sharp uses this traditional knowledge and Indigenous ways of being in the world to inform how the work is done.
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Giselle is a Board member of Toronto PFLAG, a volunteer-run charitable organizationwhich promotes the health and well-being of LGBTQ+ persons, their families, friends and allies through support, education and advocacy. She has spoken at various conferences, hospitals and community events on her lived experience as a parent and the importance of acceptance, inclusion, validation and affirmation of sexual and gender minority youth. Giselle’s focus with Toronto PFLAG is to keep families together by supporting parents when their kids come out.
She is also a co-facilitator of TRANSceptance, a peer support group for parents and caregivers of trans youth and young adults, hosted by Central Toronto Youth Service.With her expertise and knowledge, she also sits on the LGBTQ+ Care Steering Committee at Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto, which strives to provide their Fertility Clinic’s LGBTQ patients with superior care. When Giselle is not volunteering and advocating for the LGBTQ+ community, her days are filled running her personal training business and spending time with her grandchild.
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