A diverse group of young people laughing.

Our Team

Get to know the amazing people behind the work that we do!

Our Board

  • Shannon Stannard

    Board Chair

    Shannon Stannard

    Board Chair

    Shannon, an educator and global explorer, advocates for youth and diverse cultures. CBFY Board member, manages The ARK Foundation. Also involved in other boards, including Create Change Canada. Holds a B.Ed. from the University of Calgary and International Development certification from UBC. Enjoys singing with Calgary vocal group REVV52.

  • Kristi Sebalj

    Board Vice-Chair

    Kristi Sebalj

    Board Vice-Chair

    Kristi Sebalj, Vice-Chair at the Alberta Utilities Commission, adjudicates utility cases and leads in federal, provincial, and territorial energy regulation. Previously, at the Ontario Energy Board, she served as Senior Legal Counsel and Registrar, overseeing adjudicative processes and implementing a consumer engagement program. As a former Partner at a major Canadian law firm, Kristi handled diverse corporate and regulatory energy matters. With an LLB and marine environmental law certificate from Dalhousie University, and BSc and MSc from McMaster University, she is called to the bar in Alberta, Ontario, and Nova Scotia.

  • Kate Thorgeirson

    Chair Emeritus

    Kate Thorgeirson

    Chair Emeritus

    Kate, HR Portfolio Manager at BMO Financial Group in Calgary, collaborates with leadership to implement people-focused strategies for over 10,000 employees. With a background in project management, HR, and executive search, she emphasizes fostering learning, creating supportive environments, and building diverse leadership teams. Kate holds an MBA and Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Calgary. She has been actively involved with the Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth since 2017, previously serving as Chair of the board and committees focused on HR and Nominations.

  • Doug Alder

    Board Tresurer

    Doug Alder

    Board Tresurer

    Stay Tuned!

  • Jatin Shory

    Board Secretary

    Jatin Shory

    Board Secretary

    Jatin Shory, leading Shory Law LLP's Immigration department, excels in litigation, corporate immigration, and legal education. His adept handling of complex cases has marked him as a notable lawyer, guiding businesses through Canadian immigration law intricacies. As an adjunct instructor at Queen’s University, he teaches Immigration and Citizenship Law, and through pro-bono legal clinics, he offers free immigration advice to vulnerable populations. Additionally, as a Table Officer at CBA's Immigration Section, Jatin contributes to shaping the national conversation on immigration in Canada and has testified at the Canadian House of Commons on evolving programs and issues.

  • Duncan MacRae

    Senior Director

    Duncan MacRae

    Senior Director

    Duncan MacRae is a Senior Director with Alvarez & Marsal Canada in their corporate restructuring practice. He has over ten years of accounting and financial experience, with a focus on turnaround, restructuring and insolvency mandates. In these roles, he has provided strategic advice to debtor companies, secured lenders and other stakeholders in complex restructuring situations. Duncan is a Licensed Insolvency Trustee, a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CA) and holds a bachelor’s degree from St. Francis Xavier University.

  • Matthew Klukas

    Director

    Matthew Klukas

    Director

    Matt, COO and co-founder of Criterium Energy, drives strategic energy initiatives in SE Asia. Canada ASEAN Business Council Energy Advisor. Geophysics BSc, MBA from Haskayne. Passionate about travel and cultural exploration.

  • Kathleen Hurtubise

    Director

    Kathleen Hurtubise

    Director

    Stay Tuned!

  • Michael Morcom

    Director

    Michael Morcom

    Director

    Michael Morcom, Managing Partner in Calgary, leads in corporate finance and mid-market transactions. With a focus on secured transactions and real estate, he brings a personable and collaborative approach to achieve client goals. Extensive experience in various industries, including real estate development, hotel finance, construction, automotive finance, and professional sports financings. Co-leads the Firm’s Financial Services Industry Group, contributing to banking industry development. Formerly involved in litigation at Miller Thomson, appearing in all levels of court in Alberta early in his career.

Our Executive Team

  • Frank Cattoni

    Chief Executive Officer

    Frank Cattoni

    Chief Executive Officer

    Frank is the CEO of the Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth (CBFY), where he leads initiatives to support immigrant and refugee children, youth, and families. He excels at fostering collaboration across sectors like justice, healthcare, and social services. He's known for his innovative thinking in social justice, having launched several multi-million-dollar programs. Previously, he directed the Safe Communities Opportunity and Resource Centre (SORCe), coordinating experts from 14 agencies and architecting the Cross Roads Centre for integrated social services. With 25 years at the Calgary Police Service, Frank diverted young people from the justice system due to trauma, addiction, homelessness, and mental illness. He holds a University of Calgary Bachelor of Arts degree, various leadership certificates, and actively volunteers in the community.

  • Lorraine Kinsman

    Director of Programs

    Lorraine Kinsman

    Director of Programs

    Lorraine Kinsman, CBFY's Director of Programs since July 2022, boasts a distinguished 33-year career with The Calgary Board of Education (CBE) as a principal and teacher. Recognized as one of Canada’s Outstanding Principals in 2014, she led the opening of two notable Calgary schools, Cranston School in 2010 and Eric Harvie School in 2016. A Sessional Instructor at St. Mary’s University, Lorraine co-authored the ‘Math Makes Sense’ series for grades 3/4/5. Past roles include chairing The Calgary Young Writers’ Conference, The ATA Women in Leadership Committee Local 38, and the Elementary Principals’ Association.

    A passionate advocate of Peace Education and Literacy Learning, Lorraine's conference presentations, including U-Lead 2022 and Pathways to Prosperity 2023, emphasize these themes. Integrating her passions into her work at CBFY, she supports newcomer and refugee youth. Originally from Nova Scotia, Lorraine migrated to Alberta in 1978 with her husband, Michael.

  • Cristina Balamban

    Director of People & Culture

    Cristina Balamban

    Director of People & Culture

    Stay Tuned!

Our Program Leadership Team

  • Lorraine Kinsman

    Director of Programs

    Lorraine Kinsman

    Director of Programs

    Lorraine Kinsman, CBFY's Director of Programs since July 2022, boasts a distinguished 33-year career with The Calgary Board of Education (CBE) as a principal and teacher. Recognized as one of Canada’s Outstanding Principals in 2014, she led the opening of two notable Calgary schools, Cranston School in 2010 and Eric Harvie School in 2016. A Sessional Instructor at St. Mary’s University, Lorraine co-authored the ‘Math Makes Sense’ series for grades 3/4/5. Past roles include chairing The Calgary Young Writers’ Conference, The ATA Women in Leadership Committee Local 38, and the Elementary Principals’ Association.

    A passionate advocate of Peace Education and Literacy Learning, Lorraine's conference presentations, including U-Lead 2022 and Pathways to Prosperity 2023, emphasize these themes. Integrating her passions into her work at CBFY, she supports newcomer and refugee youth. Originally from Nova Scotia, Lorraine migrated to Alberta in 1978 with her husband, Michael.

  • Riti Balchandani

    Program Manager - Communities

    Riti Balchandani

    Program Manager - Communities

    Riti immigrated to Canada in 2011, initially facing challenges that evolved into a positive experience. High school, with its emphasis on creative freedom, became a source of joy, fostering a strong sense of belonging within her friends and church community. A passion for learning led her to graduate with a Bachelor's of Education in Secondary Science.

    Currently working in an environment that values helping others, safety, creativity, and people-oriented approaches, Riti finds fulfillment in assisting youth in their growth and goal achievement. Drawing from her own experiences, she strives to create safe and engaging learning environments that provide autonomy and unique experiences for youth, promoting confidence and a sense of belonging, akin to the support she received as a newcomer.

  • Shimeles Kebede

    Program Manager - Operations

    Shimeles Kebede

    Program Manager - Operations

    Having an immigrant background myself, it gives me a special meaning to work with an immigrant serving agency like CBFY and make a difference in the lives of newcomer youth and their families using my rich experience in the immigrant sector, my knowledge, cultural competence, and skills. In my current role as a program supervisor, I do this by contributing to the design, development, and implementation of programs that respond to the various settlement and integration related needs of newcomer youth and their families. My background in legal studies, International Relations, certificate trainings in leadership, project management, and other relevant areas, coupled with my passion to engage and work with people of diverse backgrounds, help me deliver well in the role I am playing now - and will play in the future.

  • Tim Michayluk

    Project Coordinator & Team Lead, Outreach Team

    Tim Michayluk

    Project Coordinator & Team Lead, Outreach Team

    As a retired School Principal with 36 years of experience, I am thrilled to have been seconded to CBFY to contribute to the development of English Language Learning after-school programs for Ukrainian Youth. This initiative targets school-age children (K-12) in both Calgary school districts. While the primary focus is on conversational English skills, the program also aims to enrich students' understanding of their new home, Canada. Beyond language acquisition, we address social/emotional issues, providing support and intervention for those dealing with anxiety and trauma. Additionally, we offer interpretive services to overcome language barriers for schools, parents, and other agencies in need. Our holistic approach ensures a comprehensive and supportive learning environment for Ukrainian youth settling into their new Canadian home.

  • Catherine Clark

    Program Team Lead, Communities

    Catherine Clark

    Program Team Lead, Communities

    My name is Catherine Clark or Mama C to the hundreds of youths that I have worked with over the past 9 years in the Afterschool Program. My passion is helping youth navigate through high school, providing them with homework support, opportunities to gain knowledge, and have new experiences that will help them grow in confidence for their future school and work. I have the privilege of walking alongside these youths in the NxtGen Program as they find friendships and build connections in their school community.

  • Fahri Duman

    Team Lead - Connect Team

    Fahri Duman

    Team Lead - Connect Team

    Fahri Duman is one of the SWIS Program Supervisors at the Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth. He holds a Bachelor of Science and Kinesiology degree. He is a foreign-trained teacher and speaks Turkish. In his work with the Calgary Board of Education, Fahri Duman demonstrated a strong commitment to encouraging global perspectives in young people while preparing and supporting students for and through positive educational experiences. His abilities to anticipate and prepare for challenges while problem-solving with and advocating for others have enhanced his professional experiences both in Turkey and in Canada. I have worked at Crescent Heights High School to support students in developing their confidence, becoming active members of society, and fulfilling their potential.
    Do not be afraid of change that is how we grow. If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward you are always in the same place.

  • Bibhu Ojha

    Team Lead - Bridge Link Family Resource Centre

    Bibhu Ojha

    Team Lead - Bridge Link Family Resource Centre

    Bibhu has worked with CBFY since 2010, including her previous role as SWIS Worker, Senior SWIS Worker and present position as SWIS Supervisor. She has a M.A in Sociology and B A in English & Social service from the University of Nepal . She has had a lifetime wish for travel and for learning from other cultures. She is passionate in her desire to help newcomer youth and their families settle and integrate into their new life in Canada.

  • Aaron Fulmek

    Team Lead - West and North West Calgary

    Aaron Fulmek

    Team Lead - West and North West Calgary

    Over the past five years at CBFY, I've progressed from a part-time facilitator to my current role as Supervisor, where I've developed a profound passion for building a supportive community for newcomer, refugee, and low-income elementary children. My journey has equipped me with expertise in program development and innovation, and I've honed a strength-based leadership style. Working closely with elementary kids has become a source of joy, and I'm adept at crafting social-emotional-based lesson plans and curriculums. As an Afterschool Coordinator and Supervisor, I've cultivated skills in staff training and creating a positive work environment. Overall, my experience at CBFY has not only sharpened my professional skills but also ignited a genuine enthusiasm for fostering compassion, empathy, and a sense of belonging among the children we serve.

  • Aileen Signh

    Team Lead, North of McKnight

    Aileen Signh

    Team Lead, North of McKnight

    Stay Tuned!

  • Abiyu Hailemariam

    Team Lead - Greater Forest Lawn

    Abiyu Hailemariam

    Team Lead - Greater Forest Lawn

    As a Settlement Worker in School at the Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth (CBFY), I hold a graduate degree in Development Studies and International Relations and have undergone comprehensive on-the-job training, including Trauma Informed Practice, Youth and Digital Technology, Positive Youth Development, Working with Refugee Youth, Cultural Competence, and Navigating Newcomer Youth Mental Health Resources. With a background in teaching and years of experience working with youth and their parents, I am currently stationed at Forest Lawn High School, collaborating closely with teachers to facilitate the seamless integration of newcomer students into both their educational environment and the broader community. My passion lies in supporting newcomer youth on their settlement journey and aiding their successful integration into their new life in Canada.

  • Fromen Bensing

    Team Lead - South/Deep South

    Fromen Bensing

    Team Lead - South/Deep South

    My family moved to Canada in 2007. I have been working in the non profit sector in Calgary for about 15 years, more than 11 years from CBFY. I am passionate working for community and social development. I have knowledge and experience in settlement practice, resource advising, case management, and SWIS program supervision.

  • Monica Moosbauer

    Team Lead - Southbound/Downtown Area

    Monica Moosbauer

    Team Lead - Southbound/Downtown Area

    Monica Moosbauer, leading the Downtown area NNESST Team. My fervor lies in assisting newcomer students in adapting to a new country, leveraging their strengths, and persistently pursuing their goals.

  • Umida Sobirova

    Team Lead - North Central

    Umida Sobirova

    Team Lead - North Central

    In my current role, I organize and lead programs for youth, fostering academic and personal success by cultivating a sense of belonging and community. With international experience in Turkey, Oman, and Ukraine before settling in Canada, I am fluent in Uzbek, Russian, and Turkish. I am a strong advocate for lifelong learning, pursuing a Master's in Education and learning French. As a mother of three busy kids, I believe in the importance of investing in the future of children and youth. My career at CBFY aligns with my passion for empowering youth and contributing to their support system. If you ever need assistance in Uzbek, Russian, or Turkish, please feel free to reach out.

Our Administration Team

  • Beant Kaur

    Program Administrator

    Beant Kaur

    Program Administrator

    Hello, I'm Beant Kaur, and I relocated from India to Canada in 2021 with a degree in Information Technology and 7 years of work experience. Surprisingly, my job search didn't yield any interview calls. Following my husband's suggestion, I decided to further my studies, focusing on Database Administration, a field related to my expertise.

    The journey wasn't easy, demanding significant effort, but my perseverance led to an internship opportunity at CBFY, an organization aiding immigrants like myself. This internship evolved into a full-time position, validating the challenges I faced.

    Today, I take pride in working at CBFY, not just for personal fulfillment but also to facilitate the journey for fellow immigrants. I've realized that even in adversity, persistence can yield positive outcomes. Being part of a community that understands and supports newcomers is an amazing experience, and I'm grateful to contribute to such a supportive environment.

  • Cathie Bennett

    Program Administrator - Communications

    Cathie Bennett

    Program Administrator - Communications

    Cathie has worked with CBFY since 2014, first as an Afterschool Program Tutor and progressing through roles such as Youth Worker in the Mentorship Program and Settlement Worker with Bridge Link. Currently, she is the Program Administrator in Communications. Outside of work, she loves creative pursuits like crocheting and DIY projects, and spending time with her husband and two children.

  • Eamon Saldana

    Administrative Assistant

    Eamon Saldana

    Administrative Assistant

    Proven advocate with 4 years at Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth, leading Youth Advisory Council and launching leadership program. Passionate about community, active in anti-racism, mental health, and youth advocacy. Contributed to Transit Ambassadors Program and Youth Central. Collaborates with ActionDignity to bridge immigrant and Indigenous teachings. Experienced in government administration, excelling in English, administrative assistance, customer service, communication, and leadership. Committed to inclusivity and collaboration for a vibrant community.

  • Gladys Marimira

    Program Administrator

    Gladys Marimira

    Program Administrator

    Stay Tuned!

  • Hazel Bauzon

    Program Administrator

    Hazel Bauzon

    Program Administrator

    I help with CBFY's technology distribution, coordination, and management. I'm responsible for tech inventory and disposal. I am the main point of contact for CBFY's IT Tech support help, Tech 2 U.

  • Neha Jamwal

    People and Culture Coordinator

    Neha Jamwal

    People and Culture Coordinator

    Stay Tuned!

  • Lena Sakhatsky

    Financial Administrator

    Lena Sakhatsky

    Financial Administrator

    Lena Sakhatsky, born in Ukraine and lived in Israel before moving to Calgary, Canada. All her career life she has been an accountant or finance sector. Being employed by different sectors in different countries. She was inspired to work here as our work is near to her heart.

  • Palmira Leon Tellez

    Senior Accountant

    Palmira Leon Tellez

    Senior Accountant

    I am part of the Canadian community now, I came to Canada in 2013. I am a Mexican lady who has an Accounting degree in Mexico. Being an immigrant is not that easy and making adjustments is part of our responsibility to survive in a different environment. I can share my knowledge, professional experience, and all possible help with people who wants to be here. At CBFY I have the opportunity to learn from colleagues with a lot of experience to guide the youth community. I have learned and am still learning about Accounting/Finance, so I look forward to being at CBFY and growing up together. My passion is my Family, so let's keep happy families in this Organization.

Frontline Staff

  • Aaron Fulmek

    Team Lead - West and North West Calgary

    Aaron Fulmek

    Team Lead - West and North West Calgary

    Over the past five years at CBFY, I've progressed from a part-time facilitator to my current role as Supervisor, where I've developed a profound passion for building a supportive community for newcomer, refugee, and low-income elementary children. My journey has equipped me with expertise in program development and innovation, and I've honed a strength-based leadership style. Working closely with elementary kids has become a source of joy, and I'm adept at crafting social-emotional-based lesson plans and curriculums. As an Afterschool Coordinator and Supervisor, I've cultivated skills in staff training and creating a positive work environment. Overall, my experience at CBFY has not only sharpened my professional skills but also ignited a genuine enthusiasm for fostering compassion, empathy, and a sense of belonging among the children we serve.

  • Abiyu Hailemariam

    Team Lead - Greater Forest Lawn

    Abiyu Hailemariam

    Team Lead - Greater Forest Lawn

    As a Settlement Worker in School at the Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth (CBFY), I hold a graduate degree in Development Studies and International Relations and have undergone comprehensive on-the-job training, including Trauma Informed Practice, Youth and Digital Technology, Positive Youth Development, Working with Refugee Youth, Cultural Competence, and Navigating Newcomer Youth Mental Health Resources. With a background in teaching and years of experience working with youth and their parents, I am currently stationed at Forest Lawn High School, collaborating closely with teachers to facilitate the seamless integration of newcomer students into both their educational environment and the broader community. My passion lies in supporting newcomer youth on their settlement journey and aiding their successful integration into their new life in Canada.

  • Adriana Guillen Gutierrez

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Adriana Guillen Gutierrez

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Her passion for supporting children and youth through their journey as new immigrants reflects a commitment to fostering a positive and inclusive environment for individuals navigating the challenges of relocation. This dedication suggests a genuine interest in providing guidance, resources, and emotional support to help young immigrants adapt and thrive in their new surroundings. Her enthusiasm for this cause likely involves recognizing the unique needs and experiences of young newcomers and striving to contribute to their successful integration and well-being in their adopted communities.

  • Ahmad Barak

    Intake Worker

    Ahmad Barak

    Intake Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Aileen Signh

    Team Lead, North of McKnight

    Aileen Signh

    Team Lead, North of McKnight

    Stay Tuned!

  • Alex Postnikoff

    Afterschool Program Senior Facilitator

    Alex Postnikoff

    Afterschool Program Senior Facilitator

    Hello, I'm Alex Postnikoff, a Canadian with Russian heritage, specifically as a descendant of the Doukhobors, a pacifist community exiled from Russia a century ago for their refusal to bear arms. Currently a student at the University of Calgary pursuing a combined degree in English and Education, my ultimate goal is to become a high school English teacher. My connection to the UYS&BP stems from my educational path, but my qualifications also include teaching English in Ukraine in 2016. As an ESL teacher for Ukrainian students in Canada, I find immense joy in building meaningful connections that visibly impact their lives. While I'm relatively new to working with youth, my strength lies in English, and I'm confident in my writing abilities. I'm eager to assist with editing tasks such as cover letters and important emails, contributing to the development of individuals here in Canada.

  • Ang'er Ruay

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Ang'er Ruay

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Having immigrated to Calgary from Kenya after living in the Kakuma refugee camp, I hold a Bachelor's Degree in Human Ecology with a focus on Family Social Sciences from the University of Manitoba. My journey has been marked by a commitment to working with newcomers, immigrants, and vulnerable populations, aiming to combat poverty and enhance the well-being of individuals and communities. My experience includes roles with non-profit organizations such as Manitoba Women for Women and the Mustard Seed Calgary, where I served as a Community Outreach Advocate. Currently, I find fulfillment as a Settlement Worker In School at the Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth, engaging with and learning from youths and their families from diverse backgrounds. While supporting families in meeting their settlement needs, I also derive personal growth and learning from these interactions. The positive impact and influence of newcomer youths and their families have been instrumental in shaping my life.

  • Anthony Obispo

    Intake Worker

    Anthony Obispo

    Intake Worker

    I am currently working as SWIS Settlement Worker for Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth. Our service mandate is focused on supporting newcomer students in school and helping them build social connections as they adjust to a new life in Canada. We provide information regarding the school system, access to educational resources, assistance accessing government and community benefits, and many more. We basically act as their guide to ensure that their transition is doing well in Canada.

  • Arnell Mitchell

    Senior Youth Worker

    Arnell Mitchell

    Senior Youth Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Arnida Guillermo

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS Worker)

    Arnida Guillermo

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS Worker)

    Stay Tuned!

  • Bibhu Ojha

    Team Lead - Bridge Link Family Resource Centre

    Bibhu Ojha

    Team Lead - Bridge Link Family Resource Centre

    Bibhu has worked with CBFY since 2010, including her previous role as SWIS Worker, Senior SWIS Worker and present position as SWIS Supervisor. She has a M.A in Sociology and B A in English & Social service from the University of Nepal . She has had a lifetime wish for travel and for learning from other cultures. She is passionate in her desire to help newcomer youth and their families settle and integrate into their new life in Canada.

  • Chelsea Wolfe

    Afterschool Program Coordinator

    Chelsea Wolfe

    Afterschool Program Coordinator

    I have worked at CBFY with Bridge Club for over 7 years, starting off as an Afterschool Program (ASP) Facilitator running activities with children and youth. I transitioned into a senior facilitator roll where I assisted in administrative tasks while continuing in programs with children. In early 2020 I began my role as an ASP Coordinator for Bridge Club (grades 1-6). Since then I have gained stronger knowledge of programing, lesson planning, curriculum building, working with children and youth, behavior management, social emotional learning, mentorship and leadership. I also have a Bachelors of Business Administration where I studied non-profit and social innovation in which I learned more about non-profit structures, systems change, and supporting communities. Working with the Bridge Club students is what excites me about my everyday on the job. Seeing our students learn, grow, adapt and enjoy program is the highlight of my job as well as I enjoy creating new and fun learning opportu

  • Constance "Connie" Mhene

    Mentorship Program Youth Worker

    Constance "Connie" Mhene

    Mentorship Program Youth Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Dalal Ayash

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Dalal Ayash

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    My name is Dalal Ayash. I am a settlement worker with CBFY. I have a bachelor degree in Arts. An ELL specialist Diploma from Mount Royal University. I have extensive experience in dealing with youth, I can provide help with Youth programs development, in school settlement programs. I am fluent in English and Arabic. love what I do at CBFY. It’s a fantastic role.

  • Dinesh Koirala

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Dinesh Koirala

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    As an immigrant myself, I joined CBFY as I want to help fellow immigrants settle and integrate well in the Calgary communities. The most beautiful part of my job is helping newcomer youth and their families, listen their stories, share my own story, tell them that they are not alone and most of us have the similar stories.

  • Diyana Woldegebrael

    Mentorship Program Youth Worker

    Diyana Woldegebrael

    Mentorship Program Youth Worker

    This is an interesting question, I joined Mentorship in 2017 as a peer mentor and was really impressed with the work of my youth workers. They supported and helped me thrive not only in high school but also in University. It can be really hard navigating postsecondary as newcomer but they supported me and helped me get my scholarship. I graduated with a double major in Political Science and International Relations, I think this educational experience helped me understand the immigration journey of people other than myself. I really enjoy coming to work because my team makes the work environment do open, welcoming, and happy. Furthermore, I get to work with youth and offer support to many that suffer from language barriers. Many of the youth will be the first in their families to go to university/college and they lack a lot of information. Being able to be a safe, trusted source of information and knowledge is very important to me.

  • Eamon Saldana

    Mentorship Program Senior Facilitator

    Eamon Saldana

    Mentorship Program Senior Facilitator

    Proven advocate with 4 years at Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth, leading Youth Advisory Council and launching leadership program. Passionate about community, active in anti-racism, mental health, and youth advocacy. Contributed to Transit Ambassadors Program and Youth Central. Collaborates with ActionDignity to bridge immigrant and Indigenous teachings. Experienced in government administration, excelling in English, administrative assistance, customer service, communication, and leadership. Committed to inclusivity and collaboration for a vibrant community.

  • Fahri Duman

    Team Lead - Connect Team

    Fahri Duman

    Team Lead - Connect Team

    Fahri Duman is one of the SWIS Program Supervisors at the Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth. He holds a Bachelor of Science and Kinesiology degree. He is a foreign-trained teacher and speaks Turkish. In his work with the Calgary Board of Education, Fahri Duman demonstrated a strong commitment to encouraging global perspectives in young people while preparing and supporting students for and through positive educational experiences. His abilities to anticipate and prepare for challenges while problem-solving with and advocating for others have enhanced his professional experiences both in Turkey and in Canada. I have worked at Crescent Heights High School to support students in developing their confidence, becoming active members of society, and fulfilling their potential.
    Do not be afraid of change that is how we grow. If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward you are always in the same place.

  • Foroozan Savodji

    Intake Worker

    Foroozan Savodji

    Intake Worker

    I am a certified teacher from Iran and have the Bridge to Teaching certificate from the University of Calgary. I have more than 20 years of experience working with students K-12. I am also a certified Farsi language interpreter, and I can speak Azeri and communicate in Turkish. During my work experience in Canada, I have worked with a culturally diverse population of students and newcomer families, so I am fully aware of their needs and concerns. I am familiar with many community resources, and I can connect families to these resources. CBFY's core values and mission to empower the newcomer youth excites me to come to work at CBFY.

  • Fromen Bensing

    Team Lead - South/Deep South

    Fromen Bensing

    Team Lead - South/Deep South

    My family moved to Canada in 2007. I have been working in the non profit sector in Calgary for about 15 years, more than 11 years from CBFY. I am passionate working for community and social development. I have knowledge and experience in settlement practice, resource advising, case management, and SWIS program supervision.

  • Ilona Ding

    Intake Worker

    Ilona Ding

    Intake Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Iryna Korenchuk

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link

    Iryna Korenchuk

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link

    When you go to bed and still thinking about whether to change one activity to another, when you rejoice at the small achievement of your student and immediately plan the next lesson in your imagination, you realize that you love this work. I worked as a teacher in Ukraine and have possibility to work with children with CBFY. I can help with planning activities for summer camp or other after school programs. It is important to be helpful to both parents and children. That’s why I am here with CBFY.

  • Jacky "Ka Yin" Chui

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Jacky "Ka Yin" Chui

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Jacky Chui is a registered social worker with over six years of experience working with ethnic minority families and youth. He has a strong background in school social work services, with three years of experience in that field. Jacky is dedicated to providing emotional counseling, crisis management, and organizing programs for social inclusion.

  • Jamuna Pandey-Badal

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Jamuna Pandey-Badal

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Janelle Wong

    Mentorship Program Youth Worker

    Janelle Wong

    Mentorship Program Youth Worker

    Janelle Wong is deeply passionate about immigration politics. Her academic journey is fueled by a profound interest in understanding the nuanced experiences of immigrants and the barriers they face. With a focus on contributing to organizations dedicated to immigration and human rights, she aspires to address barriers faced by immigrants and shape public policies that positively impact their lives.

  • Jenai Lieu

    Afterschool Program Senior Coordinator

    Jenai Lieu

    Afterschool Program Senior Coordinator

    I started at CBFY as an Afterschool Program Facilitator back in 2010 and was one of the first facilitators to participate in the pilot of the junior high program. After studying overseas, educating on hygiene practices for rural populations in China, and showcasing incredible individuals in developing countries who were supporting their communities’, I returned back to CBFY as an Afterschool Program Coordinator, and now a Senior Coordinator. I am excited to support youth navigate the complexities of their bicultural identity and just being a young person in today’s dynamic world. I do this with an amazing team, and together, we have built inclusive and vibrant spaces where kids can come together as a community to explore, grow, and have fun! My work at CBFY, along with my experience in crisis management, the arts, and mental health, all contribute to a vision of creating communities where people have the ability thrive and support each other.

  • Jeramel Garlejo

    Mentorship Program Senior Facilitator

    Jeramel Garlejo

    Mentorship Program Senior Facilitator

    Stay Tuned!

  • Jill Aydemir

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Jill Aydemir

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    I am a former school teacher and have worked with youth in many roles in addition to teaching, such as coaching, leading camps and running youth outreach programs. I hold a Bachelor of Education and a Bachelor of Communication and Culture with Distinction, both from the University of Calgary. I have found supporting immigrant youth as a Settlement Worker in Schools with CBFY especially rewarding. My family immigrated to Canada from Turkey many years ago, so I understand some of the challenges that newcomer families face. I was born in Istanbul, Turkey and Turkish is my additional language. We have been happy to call Calgary home for many years and think it is a wonderful, welcoming city!

  • Kanwaljeet Mann

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Kanwaljeet Mann

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Kateryna Stepanchuk

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Kateryna Stepanchuk

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    I arrived in Canada in June 2022 under the CUAET program with my sons. I work as a freelance Interpreter for Sandal Translation Services Ltd. I maintain impartiality and strive to interpret everything as accurately as possible. In August I volunteered at a Summer camp for Ukrainian children. I like to help people, intuitively, I know what people need - I'm naturally empathic and sensitive. And this is why I've chosen working at CBFY as a great opportunity to implement my experience and competence in action.

  • Katy Yazdanfar

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link

    Katy Yazdanfar

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link

    I arrived in Canada as an immigrant 25 years ago. I also endured many challenges and roadblocks throughout my time in Canada so I relate with the struggles that families may encounter while transitioning to a new country. I can help provide you with information regarding education systems. I have resources for afterschool programs, as well as the ability to connect your children to various tutoring programs. We host information sessions that focus on different topics for children and adolescents that occur monthly or quarterly. If you require assistance with opening an account in PowerSchool or contacting the school regarding your children I can act as your main point of contact.

  • Khadigah Samhat

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link

    Khadigah Samhat

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link

    Stay Tuned!

  • Kulwinder Sarai

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link Team

    Kulwinder Sarai

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link Team

    My immigration journey begins in Canada 13 years ago and my story is not at all different from other Newcomers. I was born and brought up in North India, a vibrant agricultural land called, Punjab. I came to Canada with an experience in the education field and research work on “Education in Human Values” and “Altruism.” I believe in challenging work, perseverance, and life-long learning, as Brian Tracy says, “Continuous learning is the minimum requirement for success in any field.” The process of transition and integration as an immigrant was not easy. But as I became familiar with the people of the country, system, and culture; hardships began to ease, and I started to settle into my new home country without even realizing it.

  • Lena Sakhatsky

    Financial Administrator

    Lena Sakhatsky

    Financial Administrator

    Lena Sakhatsky, born in Ukraine and lived in Israel before moving to Calgary, Canada. All her career life she has been an accountant or finance sector. Being employed by different sectors in different countries. She was inspired to work here as our work is near to her heart.

  • Lina Borets

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Lina Borets

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Maha Moussa

    Intake Worker

    Maha Moussa

    Intake Worker

    My name is Maha and I have been a part of the CBFY family since June 2015. I first discovered CBFY while searching for a practicum placement while completing my education in Social Work. After completing my practicum, I have been able to join the ASP team to enhance my skills, knowledge and learnings. I began my experience with ASP working with the Bridge Club Elementary program, where I then transitioned into the Refugee Program, NxtGen Junior High and now to Connect Team. I can provide support if an Arabic speaker is ever needed as I can speak, read and write fluently. I can also provide support with providing tools and tips on working with immigrant and refugee children and youth, along with resources that could be beneficial to your work.

  • Mariam Kabalan

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link

    Mariam Kabalan

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link

    Stay Tuned!

  • Mimo Hammoud

    Afterschool Program Coordinator

    Mimo Hammoud

    Afterschool Program Coordinator

    Stay Tuned!

  • Monica Moosbauer

    Team Lead - Southbound/Downtown Area

    Monica Moosbauer

    Team Lead - Southbound/Downtown Area

    Monica Moosbauer, leading the Downtown area NNESST Team. My fervor lies in assisting newcomer students in adapting to a new country, leveraging their strengths, and persistently pursuing their goals.

  • Nadiia Morgun

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS Worker)

    Nadiia Morgun

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS Worker)

    Nadia, originally from Ukraine, embarked on a journey of adventure and self-discovery at 18. After extensive travel, she chose to live in Canada, navigating the challenges of adapting to a new country. Grateful for the support she received, Nadia now helps newcomers, particularly Ukrainians affected by the war.

  • Nagham Mahfood

    Mentorship Program Youth Worker

    Nagham Mahfood

    Mentorship Program Youth Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Naima Karani

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Naima Karani

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Najibullah Sadaat

    Intake Worker

    Najibullah Sadaat

    Intake Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Nimisha Bhatt

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link

    Nimisha Bhatt

    Settlement Worker - Bridge Link

    Stay Tuned!

  • Norma McIntyre

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Norma McIntyre

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    My background in International Relations gives me the ability to understand the process of families moving to a new country like Canada. Connecting youth and families to the community is my passion and keeps me going every day. I can advocate for youth in the schools and motivate them to become successful. I have 14 years of experience as a Settlement Worker in Schools. I speak Spanish. Currently, I am a resident in two CBE high schools.

  • Paul Neale

    Mentorship Program Senior Facilitator

    Paul Neale

    Mentorship Program Senior Facilitator

    Stay Tuned!

  • Rahel Gebrehiwot

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Rahel Gebrehiwot

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Rahel Gebrehiwot: dedicated Settlement Worker in School BA in Management, MA in Development Studies, fluent in English and Amharic. Excels in fostering integration for newcomer families, advocating for students, and maintaining confidential records. With over six years of experience, my passion lies in bridging cultural gaps and organizing workshops for a positive transition into Canadian society. Adept in needs assessment, community engagement, and crisis intervention. Dedicated to empowering families through effective communication and support.

  • Revenia Monte Ferreira

    Senior Case Worker

    Revenia Monte Ferreira

    Senior Case Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Rona Abdelmassih

    Mentorship Program Youth Worker

    Rona Abdelmassih

    Mentorship Program Youth Worker

    Arriving in Canada with my family in 2011 was initially challenging, but my high school experience transformed my perspective. I thrived on the creative freedom given in assignments, forming strong connections with friends and teachers. Graduating with a Bachelor's in Secondary Science Education reflected my passion for learning.

    My love for helping others in a safe, creative, and people-centric environment led me to a career that aligns with these values. Working in a space where I can aid youth in their growth and goal achievement resonates with my own positive experiences. Drawing on my background, I aim to create safe and engaging learning environments, empowering youth with autonomy over their education. I aspire to provide unique experiences that foster confidence, mirroring the support that shaped my sense of belonging and growth when I was new to Canada.

  • Samiha Fizal

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Samiha Fizal

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Samiha Fizal, an immigrant from India, mom of two children, speaks Malayalam, Hindi, and English languages. In-School Settlement (SWIS) worker with the Calgary Bridge Foundation for Youth for the past 10 years. Passionate about working with newcomer youth and families; love being involved in their transition, education, and settlement life and journey in Canada. An enthusiastic team player and a lifelong learner. Enjoys working collaboratively with youth community partners. Embraces diversity, mental health, spirituality, enjoys interacting with people from different parts of the world and making a positive difference in other's lives. Important values are gratitude and inclusiveness.

  • Selamawit Fsehaye

    Youth Crisis Counselor

    Selamawit Fsehaye

    Youth Crisis Counselor

    Stay Tuned!

  • Stephanie Pastro

    Intake Worker

    Stephanie Pastro

    Intake Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Svetlana Knyazeva

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Svetlana Knyazeva

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Combining technical background with the passion for an Individual strength & meaningful purpose, I see the “big picture” in detail and thrive in a diverse & inclusive environment.

  • Svitlana Dubovetska

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Svitlana Dubovetska

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Svitlana, originally from Ukraine, embarked on a journey through teaching, customs, and aiding newcomers in Bulgaria and Spain. Her path led her to Canada, where as a passionate SWIS worker, she guides students to success. With diverse roles and a heart for connections, she enriches lives.

  • Tijana Kukoleca

    Afterschool Program Senior Coordinator

    Tijana Kukoleca

    Afterschool Program Senior Coordinator

    Tijana's journey with CBFY began in 2016 when she enrolled in the Mentorship program as a newcomer from Serbia. The program facilitated her transition to Canadian life and provided essential information. After obtaining a Psychology degree from the University of Calgary, Tijana returned to CBFY to contribute to the community. She volunteered for several years, became an ASP facilitator in 2021, and quickly moved to a senior facilitator role. Currently, she serves as an ASP Coordinator with Bridge Club, focusing on social-emotional learning, generosity, and cultural diversity for the youngest clients. Tijana finds excitement in collaborating with a fantastic team and enjoying program activities with students. She is passionate about expanding newcomers' knowledge of available services, sharing personal experiences, and offering insights on helping children acclimate and thrive in a new environment. Tijana believes in creating a safe and positive space for immigrant and refugee youth, dr

  • Tim Michayluk

    Project Coordinator & Team Lead, Outreach Team

    Tim Michayluk

    Project Coordinator & Team Lead, Outreach Team

    As a retired School Principal with 36 years of experience, I am thrilled to have been seconded to CBFY to contribute to the development of English Language Learning after-school programs for Ukrainian Youth. This initiative targets school-age children (K-12) in both Calgary school districts. While the primary focus is on conversational English skills, the program also aims to enrich students' understanding of their new home, Canada. Beyond language acquisition, we address social/emotional issues, providing support and intervention for those dealing with anxiety and trauma. Additionally, we offer interpretive services to overcome language barriers for schools, parents, and other agencies in need. Our holistic approach ensures a comprehensive and supportive learning environment for Ukrainian youth settling into their new Canadian home.

  • Tsehaye Tesfu

    Intake Worker

    Tsehaye Tesfu

    Intake Worker

    Born and raised in Eritrea, I hold a bachelor's degree in Educational Psychology from the Eritrea Institute of Technology. Following graduation, I accumulated over a decade of diverse professional experience in Eritrea, Sudan, and Egypt, where I served as a school counselor, general counselor, teacher, psycho-social worker, and interpreter. In April 2014, seeking asylum, I left Eritrea and later worked as a school teacher in Sudan before residing as a refugee in Egypt from December 2015. During my six-year stay in Egypt, I worked as a psycho-social worker and interpreter at St. Andrew Refugee Services (StARS) and as an interpreter at the International Organization for Migration (IOM). In March 2022, I arrived in Canada, eager to leverage my extensive background and skills to contribute positively to the SWIS Settlement Worker position.

  • Umida Sobirova

    Team Lead - North Central

    Umida Sobirova

    Team Lead - North Central

    In my current role, I organize and lead programs for youth, fostering academic and personal success by cultivating a sense of belonging and community. With international experience in Turkey, Oman, and Ukraine before settling in Canada, I am fluent in Uzbek, Russian, and Turkish. I am a strong advocate for lifelong learning, pursuing a Master's in Education and learning French. As a mother of three busy kids, I believe in the importance of investing in the future of children and youth. My career at CBFY aligns with my passion for empowering youth and contributing to their support system. If you ever need assistance in Uzbek, Russian, or Turkish, please feel free to reach out.

  • Wenyu Hou

    Intake Worker

    Wenyu Hou

    Intake Worker

    Stay Tuned!

  • Yan Ling Wu

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Yan Ling Wu

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    I have been working with CBFY as settlement worker for over 12 years. My passion and dedication in helping newcomer kids and families have been the driving force for me to work tirelessly with fulfilled satisfaction Settlement services play a crucial role in easing the transition for newcomers, I always try to making a positive impact on the lives of those I serve. Hope my care and support can contribute significantly to the success and well-being of kids and families. I feel grateful for the positive collaboration and support from team, various agencies, and communities. And recognize the importance of building strong connections within my professional network in the past years. I grow with CBFY with learning and gaining many experience and skills either personal and professional development. Overall I am very happy to work this role.

  • Yevheniia "Yev" Ternova

    Mental Health Support Worker

    Yevheniia "Yev" Ternova

    Mental Health Support Worker

    For over 13 years, my passion has been helping people navigate challenging experiences and reclaim their lives. I've provided mental health support to diverse populations—children, adolescents, adults, parents, and families. My motivation stems not only from the intrinsic interest and proficiency in my work but also from the belief that improving one person's well-being contributes to a better world for my daughter.

    With a master's degree in psychology from Ukraine and certifications for working with various client categories, I've honed my skills through one-on-one sessions, group work, and large audience engagements, both in-person and virtually. Collaborative and supportive environments fuel my commitment to delivering quality experiences.

  • Yonas Haile

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    Yonas Haile

    Settlement Workers In-School (SWIS) Worker

    As an immigrant who underwent diverse refugee experiences in Sudanese refugee camps and lived as an urban refugee in Sudan for over 6 years, I bring a unique perspective to my work. With a 4-year tenure at UNHCR Sudan, serving as both an interpreter and data profiler for minor refugees from Eritrea, I gained insights into the challenges refugees face in their country of asylum. Additionally, I volunteered with CCIS for over 7 months upon arriving in Canada. Holding a Bachelor's degree in Management from the University of Asmara, I possess a deep understanding of the psychology of refugees and immigrants, enabling me to provide meaningful support. Having personally experienced the importance of guidance in settling in a new country, I find excitement in my role at CBFY. Leveraging my extensive experience both in Canada and abroad, I aim to assist newcomers by offering education, guidance, empowerment, advocacy, and more.