January 18, 2024
2023 Equity Grant Winners Announced

Toronto – January 10, 2023 – We are proud to announce 2023 Equity Grant recipients and to highlight work they are undertaking to advance equity and social justice within their communities.

The UFCW Canada Equity Grant Program was first launched on December 10, 2020, to coincide with Human Rights Day. Every year, it grants $1000 each to three recipients who are UFCW members or community justice activists who are currently engaged in or looking to engage in a social justice initiative.

By assisting UFCW members and community members, engaged community activists and students in addressing societal barriers to inclusion, the grant is a tangible initiative that mobilizes solidarity through community action and a solidarity approach. In doing so, the UFCW Canada Equity Grant program upholds our union values which include recognizing the social justice work being undertaken by our membership and communities across Canada.

2023 Equity Grant Recipients

Jim Ogunnoiki: Jim is a proud UFCW Local 832 member who workers for Garda Security in Manitoba. Jim started the Afro-Caribbean Association of Manitoba (ACAM) Job Fair in 1999 to address barriers to employment faced by immigrants and persons from various equity-seeking groups, after years of seeing a pattern of discrimination and barriers to employment experienced by many immigrants in Manitoba. He will use the UFCW Canada Equity Grant will support costs in relation to the upcoming 2024 Job and Career Fair to be held in Winnipeg, Manitoba on February 17, 2024.

Mikayla Odut: Mikayla is a UFCW Local 1006A member working in the retail sector in Ottawa. Mikayla is part of the administrative team for the Ottawa Regional Youth Choir (ORYC). She will use the grant to help the choir introduce an Inclusion Fund, specifically to address economic insecurities of potential choristers who want to join the choir throughout the year. Administrators see this as one more opportunity to ensure access to singing for individuals who may not otherwise have access to join community choirs.

Martha Checa: Martha Checa is President of the Casa Cultural Ecuatoriana (CCE) based in Toronto, Ontario.  The CCE aims to empower youth, women, seniors, migrants, and newcomers with Latino backgrounds in the GTA. The Equity Grant will help to mitigate significant challenges in terms of access to support and opportunities for clients who access this centre and will specifically support a Seniors Dinner to be held with over 100 clients during the holiday season. The goal of this event remains to combat social isolation, promote active aging, and ensure that seniors feel supported and valued.

Throughout the following weeks UFCW Canada will highlight the work of each Equity Grant Recipient and provide information on how you can get connected to their important work.