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Daughters of the Vote Information and Reflection

The PISA community is incredibly proud to share the experiences and reflections of three of our members. From March 5th to 8th Maia Lugar (PISA President), Carrie Robinson (PISA Communications Director), and Evelyne Verrette (PISA member) participated in the Daughters of the Vote Program. Daughters of the Vote is an initiative run by Equal Voice that started in 2017 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of white women getting the right to vote in Canada. Now, every two years 338 women from each federal riding in Canada are selected to represent their communities. They take part in an intensive four day program filled with workshops, speakers, panels, and the opportunity to network with other amazing young women emerging in politics. PISA is honoured to have two members of our Executive and one amazing PISA member involved in this year's program, and today's blog post is an informative reflection on their experience.

Click here to watch the speeches made by some of the 2021 Daughters of the Vote participants and the federal party leaders:

Maia Lugar:

Hey Gaiters! I’m so excited to talk to you all about the amazing Daughters of the Vote Conference that took place last weekend. I first applied for this conference in 2019, and I was unfortunately not chosen to participate. Instead, a friend of mine Ampai Thammachack was chosen to represent my home riding of Halifax West, and her experience in the House of Commons, seeing first-hand these strong women from all across Canada turn their backs on the Prime Minister to convey their frustration with Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpotts’ ejection from the Liberal Party (, inspired me to apply again for the 2021 conference. This time, I was selected to represent the riding of Kings-Hants in Nova Scotia. I spent the weekend hearing from inspiring speakers such as Amanda McDougall (Mayor of Cape Breton Regional Municipality), Jean Augustine (the first black woman elected to the House of Commons), Jody Wilson-Raybould (Independent MP), and Megan Leslie (a former NDP MP and current President and CEO of the World Wildlife Fund Canada), among so many others. I also had the opportunity to sit on a mock committee on the Implementation of Mi’kmaq Treaty Fishing Rights to Support A Moderate Livelihood. Representing Kings-Hants, the riding in which the Sipekne'katik moderate livelihood fishery is located and the riding in which the violence towards Mi’kmaq fishers occured in the fall, I was proud to sit on this committee and use my voice to uplift those of Indigenous peoples.

While the speakers were so inspiring to hear from, my biggest takeaway from the weekend was meeting more than 338 women and non-binary people from across Canada; hearing their perspectives and having discussions on difficult topics inspired me, and I can say that I left the conference with life-long friendships. I am proud to have represented my riding, and I am so excited to see where each of these women end up, because I’m sure that you’ll see many of their faces very soon (from MPs to policy officials to lawyers, advocates, and beyond).

Carrie Robinson:

Hi everyone! I am so excited to let you all know about my experience at Daughters of the Vote 2021. I first learned about this program when our amazing PISA President Maia Lugar told me about it, and suggested I apply. I looked into it more and realized what a great initiative and opportunity it would be, so I applied to represent my home riding of Niagara Falls. This year's program was online, which I will admit took away from the experience a bit. In regular years the delegates travel to Ottawa and sit in the seats of their respective Members of Parliament in the House of Commons. They also get to network and meet influential politicians in person. The online platform, however, was very comprehensive and the other young women made it all worth it. We made the best of the experience and put in extra effort to make group chats, follow one another on social media, and connect virtually. One of my highlights from the weekend was the federal committee simulation, where I took part in the Canadian Heritage committee, and we discussed the effects of COVID19 on Canadian Heritage, Arts and Sports. We were also given the privilege of hearing from speakers such as the Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, Megan Leslie, the Honourable Jean Augustine, and the Honourable Kim Campbell, as well as all of the federal party leaders and many other inspiring women. My biggest takeaway from this program will remain the connections I made with young women in politics all over Canada who have so much energy and drive to make a change in our country. I would recommend Daughters of the Vote to any young woman that is interested in a career in politics in any form. It was a truly empowering and inspiring weekend that I will never forget.

Evelyne Verrette:

Hi, my name is Evelyne and I am from the province of Quebec. Previously enrolled in another bachelor program, it is only recently that I have affirmed my interest for Canadian politics, and for politics more generally. When I heard about the Daughters of the Vote conference at the Sherbrooke Youth Council, I thought it was a good idea to try. I therefore applied and to my great astonishment, I was selected to represent my home riding in Trois-Rivières, Québec! This conference was enlightening in several ways: first, it was a great opportunity to meet and network with exciting people from all over the country, including Yukon and the Northwest Territories, both French-speaking and English-speaking individuals. Indeed, we had the opportunity to look at the biography of each delegate on the organiser’s website and I could only be amazed by the curriculum of each participant. Second, this conference was a great opportunity to put the lesson into practice as each delegate was asked to prepare themselves for a fictive simulation of a Parliamentary Committee. The one I had chosen was the Pre-Budget consultation ahead of the 2021 Budget… quite interesting and challenging! Several workshops were also provided throughout the weekend, such as a Media Training which I found particularly relevant. Finally, this conference has permitted me to hear from several professional and distinguished guests as well as to connect with my MP from the Bloc Québécois. I recommend this conference to every person who is wishing to develop their networking while also extending their horizon in an accelerated, practical, and concrete way. Thank you!

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