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A group photo of the team on Zoom. Everyone is smiling and posing for the picture. The people from left to right are: Lucas, Grace, Stacey, Mingji, Marielle, Nicole, and  Alysha.

About Our Team and Process

We’re an intergenerational and intercultural team of people. In Fall 2020 we held online discussion small groups with 30 Chinese and Korean-speaking adults and seniors in Langley, Surrey, and across the lower mainland, BC. The team used a design process to categorize peoples’ experiences with belonging and racism in Canada. Drawing from this research and our own personal experiences, we created and built on ideas to produce this website. An open sharing and discussion process has led us all to grow our perspectives on racism and our roles in responding to it.

About the Team Members

Nicole Wang

Nicole joined Options in 2016 as a volunteer and is now a cultural broker, facilitator, translator, and interpreter. She immigrated to Canada from China in 2011. She likes to make friends with people of all ages, and thinks that she can learn more from them than she knows. She likes reading, traveling and cooking.

Marielle Sam-Wall

Marielle is a designer and illustrator from Vancouver with a love for all things community. They identify as 4th generation Chinese Canadian with roots in Vancouver’s Chinatown and the Canton province. Most of their work is centered around designing for good and the creation of joy. In their free time, they are very involved in Vancouver’s Chinatown, pottery, and spending quality time with their family.

Lucas Ho

Lucas joined Options in 2019 and is working as a coordinator to help the community with translations/interpretations. He was born in the vibrant city of Hong Kong and immigrated to Canada when he was 5. Outside of work, he enjoys playing any sport with a racquet, watching food videos on Youtube (but doesn’t cook), and Japanese culture and food (Matcha, soba, udon 😋). 

Grace E.H. Lew

Grace is new to Canada, originally from South Korea. She has lived as an international social worker in NGOs. She has managed projects in Tanzania, Malawi, Burundi and Cambodia to enhance community development, including empowering women and children, reducing death and disability rates caused by preventable diseases, and strengthening overseas volunteer programs.

Grace has an M.A. in International Development Cooperation. As a new immigrant, she knows and understands life as a stranger and hopes her knowledge and experience can benefit the Korean community in Canada.

MingJi Wang

MingJi is a support worker who has helped immigrants and refugees on English classes placement in non-profit organizations since 2012. She was borned and raised in Northeast China until college graduation, and migrated to Vancouver to study in 2000. She enjoys baking, cooking, and playing jigsaw puzzles besides badminton. MingJi holds a bachelor degree in Human Geography from Simon Fraser University.

Alysha Baratta

Alysha Baratta is a learner, educator, facilitator, researcher, and community builder who works with the Social Innovations Hub at Options. Over the past 10 years, she's worked with immigrants and refugees in the U.S. and Canada on community-engaged projects guided by power-sharing, reciprocity, and cultural humility. Her work is informed by an anti-racist and equity pedagogy. Alysha holds a Master's degree in Human Geography from the University of South Carolina. She loves baking and being a busy puppy mom.

Stacey Wakelin

Stacey is a passionate volunteer and collaborator who spends her time engaged in community building work: organizing community events, leading workshops with newcomers, being a voice for equality and anti-racism work. She currently sits on the Board of the Triple A Senior Housing Society in Langley and is also a member of the Langley Human Dignity Coalition. A passionate volunteer, Stacey has been a volunteer at Options, leading arts and crafts classes with clients. A Township of Langley resident, Stacey helps operate her family's small business in Langley. Whether it is through volunteering or engagement in local politics as a candidate or involvement in a local riding association, Stacey believes that people have the power to create change in their communities.

Thank you!

This project was made possible by funding from the Community Foundations of Canada, to whom we are very grateful. We would like to thank all of the people who offered their contribution to this project. We appreciate the input of newcomers to Canada who participated in focus group interviews and shared their stories.

Thank you to the counsellors who hosted online workshops for communities to discuss racism: Mary Kam, Vancouver Multicultural Counselling Centre, and Laarni Bernardo. And thank you to the individuals who contributed to this project and gave feedback on the resources: Tesni Leung, Suwon Lee, Annie Ohana,  Jennifer Chan, Pia Kolba, Malou Sibbaluca, Joy Sapiera, Jenny Lam, and Khim Tan.

About Options Community Services

Options Community Services (OCS) is Canadian non-profit registered charity providing social services in Surrey, Delta, White Rock and Langley, British Columbia. We are an innovative and well-respected leader in the communities we serve. OCS is a diverse organization united for the purpose of helping people help themselves and promoting safe, health and vibrant communities. Guided by diversity, integrity, resourcefulness, collaboration and excellence, our vision is inspiring hope and belonging to all.

The diversity of our community takes many forms. OCS is committed to celebrating the rich diversity of our community. We are guided by the principle that celebrating diversity enriches and empowers the lives of all people.

Learn more about Options Community Services here.

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