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Vancouver School of Theology

Mother’s Group

Mother's Group

Dr. Rosa Sevy, Iona Pacific Post-doctoral Fellow, has now started her third Mothers’ Inter-faith and inter-cultural bridging program. Based on the success of the previous programs, the Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia awarded Iona Pacific with the competitive and prestigious BC Embrace Grant. This funding will enable Dr. Sevy to continue creating and implementing bridging parenting programs aimed to engage established and immigrant mothers from different faith groups and diverse groups in conversations intended to learn about each other’s cultures and traditions, and explore common practices and concerns in their role as mothers, wives, and active members of their communities. Through the encounter with fellow women who are going through the challenges involved in child-rearing practices, this project aims to create a context for promoting personal friendships and connections, where the participants can realize that their commonalities as women and mothers transcend faith, cultural or political differences.

The objectives of these programs are to provide participants with a space where they can meet and interact on a personal level with women from diverse faiths and nationalities who are in a similar stage and facing similar child-rearing challenges. These initiatives are also intended to provide participants with an opportunity to learn from professionals in the field of child psychology different topics related to parenting, promote respect for differences, cooperation, and the opportunity to counter prejudices and stereotypes originating from misinformation and lack of face-to-face encounters with members of other Faiths and ethno-cultural communities and prepare participants to envision, plan and implement similar projects in their communities.

This new program has been deeply enriched by the support of the Program Coordinator, Veronica Martinez and the Planning Committee formed by Ronit Berger, Adele Lewin, Saqi Saqian and Yvonne Hsu, all of them mothers from different Faith traditions and ethno-cultural backgrounds, who participated in the past Building Bridges Mothers’ Program. In addition to their support and enthusiasm for this program, these mothers were asked to join the Planning Committee for their wonderful leadership skills and creativity. The members of the Planning Committee mothers will actively interact with the Participant mothers during the project sessions, lead activities and provide a direct example and role modeling of effective Inter-faith collaboration and team work.

The program has been very well received in the diverse communities and it is operating at its maximum capacity. The participants for the Mothers’ Inter-faith Bridging come from five faith traditions: Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist and Baha’i and the following nationalities: Canada, United States, Malaysia, Korea, Japan, India, Israel, Egypt, Iran, Mexico, China, Taiwan, Ethiopia, and Chile. This amazing diversity of mothers proudly reflect our Vancouver’s multi-cultural, multi-faith communities.