trish pal, Support Coordinator
trish pal is a 2spirit (queer and genderqueer) Red River Metis person who spent a significant amount of their life on Cree and Blackfoot territory. They have been an uninvited visitor to Lkwungen, Esquimalt, and W̱SÁNEĆ territories since the fall of 2008 when they came to work on their BSW, Indigenous Specialization. trish’s work is grounded in harm reduction and social justice through a decolonizing lens. When not at AVP, this prairie kid can be found seeking out sunbeams, organizing in the community, working at AVI, and cuddling their handsome catboyfriend Joseph the Brave.
captain snowdon, Outreach Coordinator
captain is super excited to have joined AVP as the Outreach Coordinator. captain lives uninvited on the territory of the Lekwungen and WSÁNEĆ peoples. Their background is in social justice, outreach, counselling, harm reduction, somatic sex education and sidewalk poetry. captain has an undergrad in women’s studies & sociology and a masters and doctorate in human sexuality. Currently, captain uses the pronoun they/them, identifies as a genderqueer- queer radical faery- faggot witch and is in love with the ocean. captain’s newest love is a poo-triever (golden doodle) named Bruce.
meg neufeld, Education Coordinator
meg has an honours science degree in geography, from UVic. They’ve lived and worked on Lkwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ territories since 2010 and love it here. meg has provided support services to survivors of violence for five years. Their work designing and facilitating curricula for AVP has been a really important contribution to the anti violence work that this office does. They are in love with learning, confused with gender, and so stoked to be a part of the amazing AVP team.
Paloma Ponti, Volunteer Lead
Born and raised on the territory of the Lekwungen and WSÁNEĆ peoples, Paloma Ponti is a cisgender settler woman. As a white presenting person of “mixed-race”, Paloma often struggles to locate herself while both acknowledging her Colombian roots and her own white privilege, and is consistently deepening her learning about this. Paloma began working on sexualized violence prevention at age 15 as a member of Project Respect’s Youth Social Action Team and Hollaback! Victoria, BC. She continues to expand her understanding of systems of oppression as a UVic Gender Studies and Social Justice Studies student and now in her work at AVP. She is constantly inspired by the strong feminists in her life including her rad grandmother who taught the first Women’s Studies course at UVic in the 1970s. When not swamped by work and school, Paloma loves weaving, knitting and attempting to play the ukulele.
Serena Bhandar, Outreach Coordinator
Serena currently lives, works and writes on unceded Lekwungen, W̱SÁNEĆ and Esquimalt territories. As a mixed-race Punjabi Sikh/Welsh woman and genderfluid and panromantic femme, she draws much of her creative power and fortitude from the unwavering ambiguity of her intersections. Her arts degree at UVic specialized in fiction and professional communication, among other subjects, and she can often be found musing at the worlds captured in a puddle’s reflection, with words in her heart and a wish on her lips. In addition to working with a number of social justice organizations in town, she previously moonlighted as a technical writer and website designer for government. On that note, please let her know if you have any questions about navigating bureaucracies and the corporate world, either on campus or beyond it. She can most easily be reached by messenger owl, or failing that, by email.
Quin Djurickovic, Facilitator & Writer
Quin is a violence prevention worker at Peers Victoria and has been doing community organizing for seven years. They have a Bachelor of Physical Health & Education from Queen’s University and have been volunteering with AVP since the fall of 2016. Quin is into sunny days, jean vests, herbal tea, and heart to heart conversations.
Yasmine has lived as an uninvited settler on Kanien’kehá:ka and Siksika territories, before moving to territory of the Lekwungen and WSÁNEĆ peoples to study Political Science at the University of Victoria. Yasmine is a program assistant at the Centre for Asia Pacific Initiatives. She has worked abroad in a refugee support centre in Malaysia. She has an honours degree in in Political Science and wrote a thesis on asylum-seekers, state-violence, human “illegality” and resistance. She is a cisgender able-bodied woman. As a “mixed race,” first-generation North American from Arab and European heritage, she continues to learn to acknowledge her white privilege, self-locate, and balance her identity within and without these various cultural contexts. Yasmine began volunteering with the AVP in the fall of 2016 in the hopes of learning about and contributing to communities and relationships of care and support.
Joshua is a queer trans white FTM of Ashkenasi heritage. Born on the territories of Tsleil-Waututh, xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) and Skxwú7mesh (Squamish) peoples, Joshua moved to the island in 1990 and currently resides on Kosampsom lands, Lkwungen territory. Growing up in an activist family and cultural community, Joshua has been doing anti-violence and social justice work for 46 years with a particular focus on militarism, capitalism, colonialism, the prison-industrial complex, legislated poverty, and other forms of collective violence. As a disabled survivor he divides his time between coping with chronic illness, building revolutionary heart-centred networks of care, coming up with creative ways to interfere with business as usual, nerding out with spreadsheets, and nourishing a belief that radical transformation is possible. He’s been volunteering with AVP since 2016.