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Monday, September 20, 2021
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Diversity

14 organizations and programs to support women’s leadership

According to the United Nations (2011), women are underrepresented not only as voters and as elected officials, but also in leadership roles in the private sector, civil service and in academia. This occurs despite their proven abilities as leaders and agents of change and their right to participate equally in democratic governance. Women continue to be marginalized from a variety of spheres as a result of gender stereotypes, discriminating laws and practices, attitudes, levels of education and the disproportionate effect of poverty on women.

In honour of and to celebrate International Women’s Day (March 8), the following resources will be inspirational and helpful to girls and women aspiring to or in leadership roles, as well as women in non-traditional fields and industries.

Women’s leadership resources – organizations, foundations and programs

Resources to inspire and support women in leadership advancement.

Advancing women in leadership – CPA

A national organization offering resources for the advancement of women in leadership. Includes webinars, career toolkits and a women’s leadership ambassador’s group aimed at chartered professional accountants (CPAs).

Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Sport and Physical Activity

Professional development association that provides learning and networking opportunities for women working and volunteering in the sport or physical activity sector. Programs include Same Game (advancing gender equality in sport), Female Coach Mentorship and Newcomer Girls and Women.

Canadian Management Centre

Offers a free library of resources including news and articles, as well as paid courses on leadership development for women.

Canadian Women’s Foundation

Nationwide non-profit organization with a focus on girls and women. The foundation funds programs such as Empowering Girls and Inclusive Leadership, provides grants to women and initiates projects such as Gender Equality Network Canada.

Catalyst

Non-profit organization that promotes “workplaces that work for women.” Resources include research, tools and awards for individuals and companies wanting to break down barriers for women in the workplace.

COADY International Institute – Indigenous Women in Community Leadership Program

Annual leadership mentoring program for Indigenous women in Canada.

Federation for Canadian Women in Medicine

National organization with local chapters. Resources include a mentorship guide and information on advocacy and self-care. The federation connects women in the medical professions with each other and the community. It serves as a public voice for women professionals, advocates for women’s issues and provides ongoing training for medical students.

Fem North Net – Women’s Leadership Development

Resources for women’s leadership in Northern communities. Encourages and promotes input from Aboriginal women, women with disabilities, women immigrants and youth. Resources include a leadership report, women’s empowerment workshop guide and video series aimed at underrepresented women in Northern communities.

Leading Talent – Women in Leadership Career Portal

Career resource for women in leadership positions. Offers information and insight on leadership, career opportunities, mentorship and advice, as well as a job board.

Minerva BC

Non-profit organization with the vision of “women helping women.” Support and mentorship to girls and women in developing leadership skills. Programs include The Face of Leadership initiative, Learning to Lead and Women Leading the Way.

Women in Leadership and Business (WiLB)

Annual intensive learning and development conference designed for women leaders; helps women of all ages to connect.

Women’s Leadership Council (WLC)

Women’s Leadership Council is an initiative of the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade for women in business. It is an inclusive program that promotes diversity in the BC business community and is one of Canada’s largest women’s business networking groups. Programs include networking events, an advisory committee, awards and a Leaders of Tomorrow program.

Women in Leadership Foundation

Organization passionate about celebrating women’s talent and success, showing female role models, and collaboration between individuals, companies and organizations to bring about positive change. Offers mentorship to women through all stages of life.

YWCA Canada

Canadian women’s organization promoting gender equality. Programs and awards for girls and women, including on mentorship and leadership for women in the workplace and in the community.

Additional reading

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Leah Szabo Author
Leah Szabo is a certified career development professional in Vancouver. She is also a freelance writer and consultant on career development issues. Szabo has a background in teaching and has most recently worked as a Career Advisor and Facilitator. She is a graduate of the University of Victoria (BA) and the University of British Columbia (BEd), (MA – European Studies).
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Leah Szabo Author
Leah Szabo is a certified career development professional in Vancouver. She is also a freelance writer and consultant on career development issues. Szabo has a background in teaching and has most recently worked as a Career Advisor and Facilitator. She is a graduate of the University of Victoria (BA) and the University of British Columbia (BEd), (MA – European Studies).
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