From research project to grassroots network

A major catalyst for the formation of our network was a SSHRC (Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council) funded community-based, participatory action research project on Racialised Girls and Social Cohesion under the direction of Dr. Jo-Anne Lee (Department of Women’s Studies – University of Victoria) beginning in Spring 2001. Jo-anne Lee stands and watches poetry at intergeneration event at Solstice Cafe.

Focusing on community development, the study’s research team and participants brought racialized minority and Indigenous girls together to talk about their issues in a July 2002 conference held at the University of Victoria: It’s About Us: A Conference for Girls on Race and Identities. The girls and women at this conference wanted an organization to continue the work that the conference began, leading to the creation of Antidote.

Our mandate

Antidote’s mandate is to reduce social exclusion faced by Indigenous and minority girls, young women and women by:

  1. Enhancing their psychosocial wellbeing and visibility through supportive programming and social networks;
  2. Providing training that supports their skill building, civic engagement and leadership capacity;
  3. Highlighting their voices and needs in programming, policy and research that impacts them;
  4. Promoting intercultural and intergenerational partnerships through community-based public education initiatives.

Our intergenerational family

Antidote has an innovative and flexible intergenerational structure based on three self-identified age groups.

  • Gurlz are girls and young women under the age of 19
  • Sistaz are young women ages 19 – 30
  • Aunties are women ages 30 and above
  • There are also great-aunties! #RespectElders

And everyone in between! If you don’t identify with any of these groups, you can create your own.

Antidote offers a unique intergenerational and cross-cultural space to develop supportive mentoring relationships with other members who share similar lived experiences, and who understand and support one another.

Kanika and Rita at a poetry night for an intergenerational event, with arms around each other.