Leadership Empowerment Activism Program (LEAP)

LEAP is an 18-month training program that offers training, mentorship and support for women who face multiple systemic barriers because of aspects of their identity (i.e. race, ethnicity, class, sexual and gender identity) in:

  • anti-oppression
  • community organizing
  • transformative leadership
  • popular education
  • creative expression
  • group facilitation

Why LEAP is relevant...

We still live in a world shaped by multiple and intersecting structures of domination within which the majority of the world, particularly women, children, poor and racialized people, bear the burden of oppression. Yet even as we are victimized, we can at the same time be the most effective and necessary agents of change.

Radically anti-racist feminist movement depends on our ability to understand how oppression works, to develop strategies for resistance and transformation, to illuminate decolonized knowledges, to build capacity for responsible leadership and self-determination, and to mobilize communities towards visions of a more just world.

LEAP offers an opportunity for marginalized women to reflect on our lived experiences and develop the tools we need for building our analyses and visions in a community context. Ultimately, the goal of LEAP is to strengthen individuals and communities in struggle by developing our capacity for building and sustaining relationships of love, response-ability and solidarity.

What LEAP does...

Community Events

LEAP organizes community events as venues for popular education and also to create opportunities for women from all walks of life to connect with each other and explore different aspects of our experiences.

Workshop Series

Starting June 6, 2009, LEAP will offer a series of workshops, some of which are required for program participants and some of which are electives open to the community at large. Workshops will encompass analysis, skills training and in-depth exploration of issues affecting women.

Project Design

Based on their skills and interests, participants will design their own community organizing projects or workshops. The LEAP Advisory Committee will provide mentorship, guidance and additional training as needed.

Project Delivery

As a participant, you will design and organize your own workshops, projects or events with the support of the LEAP Coordinator. You will receive feedback from the community as well as the LEAP Advisory Committee.

Ongoing Learning and Community Building

Following the workshop series, participants will have the opportunity to further develop their skills and explore issues they are passionate about through engagement in community-based initiatives. We will also connect participants with community mentors who can offer guidance and support on their specific projects.

Public Educational Resources

As a participant, we will ask you to journal through your involvement with LEAP, to relate the program to your lived experiences and reflect critically on what you are learning. We will compile material from the workshop series, material developed by participants, and selected writings by participants into a resource manual to share with our community. We will also document the various stages of the program through film and photography, and share these media as public resources.

Who can be a participant and how...

LEAP strives to re-centre marginalized bodies, identities and experiences. We strongly encourage indigenous women, women of colour, poor women, and queer, trans- and two-spirited women to apply.

If you would like to become a program participant, please complete and submit the LEAP Participant Application Form no later than MAY 15, 2009 or contact Cynthia Oka, LEAP Coordinator:

Phone: 604-255-6554 or E-mail: leapcoordinator@vsw.ca

For more info on the Program`s timeline and how you can be involved please see the Program Details

2652 East Hastings Street, Vancouver, BC V5K 1Z6
604-255-6554 Fax: 604-255-7508 Email: womencentre@vsw.ca