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Meet the team

Iftu Hargaaya

Co-founder, Education and Workshop Lead 
Growing up, watching world news with her father, Iftu began her lifelong interest in social justice, research and the power of education. She’s led social studies, activist education, Language Instruction for Newcomers (LINC) and Youth Mentorship programs within Canada and South London, UK. Iftu developed and facilitated wellness courses for one of Canada’s first Recovery Colleges, where she found her passion for mental health education. In her spare time, Iftu enjoys spoken word poetry, reading the works of Black feminist thinkers and all things self and community care.

Nitu Purna

Co-founder, Programming and Social Work Lead
Nitu has spent a large part of her life as an activist and anti-oppressive practitioner, vocalizing marginalized voices in Bangladesh, and promoting gender, class, and caste inclusivity. Nitu is a registered Social Worker and constantly challenges the status quo, shedding light on the barriers newcomers face on their journey moving to a new country. With 24 years of community development experience, Nitu is a proudly published poet and short-film filmmaker, with a great passion for exploring art, culture, and history.

Priscilla Cherry

Co-founder, Communications and Peer Support Lead
Recognizing a gap in Black, Indigenous and Racialized representation in media and mental health, Priscilla pursued her passion for storytelling, leading her to work with some of North America’s largest media corporations and become one of the first Racialized Peer Supporters to graduate from one of Canada’s first-ever Peer Schools. Priscilla openly shares her lived experience with trauma to create a feeling of connectedness with others also navigating mental health concerns, gives thanks to the Creator for where she is today and finds joy in arts, journaling, and practicing daily play and creativity.

MelVee X

Board of Director Member
MelVee X is a Calgary-based multidisciplinary artist and public service provider with over 16 years of experience. Spoken word poetry, burlesque performance and photography form the core of her artistic practice. She struggled with severe mental health issues from a young age and frequently sought refuge in reading and words, eventually leading her to find success and healing through spoken word poetry. MelVee’s life’s vision is to empower equity and justice-seeking communities to tell our own stories from our own perspectives. With a recent ADHD diagnosis, MelVee joyfully continues the healing journey and is thrilled to be on the board of directors for The Colour Factor.

Amelia Harman

Board of Director Member
Amelia is a law student enrolled in the combined Juris Doctor and Master of Public Policy program at the University of Calgary, after having graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Law and Society. Amelia grew up in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories and is a proud descendant of the North Slave Metis. She is an executive member of the Indigenous Law Club and the Indigenous Students' Council at the University of Calgary. Amelia has a passion for helping others, and off-campus, she actively volunteers in her community, always looking for meaningful ways to better support our Black, Indigenous and Racialized People communities.

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