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SWRC Lunch and Learn

Tue., Mar. 1, 2022 12:00 p.m. - Tue., Mar. 1, 2022 1:00 p.m.

Location: Online via Zoom

The Social Work Research Centre (SWRC) within the Faculty of Social Work at the University of Regina invites you to a Lunch & Learn presentation on Tuesday, March 1, 2022, from 12 - 1 pm (Saskatchewan time)

Plants, People & Community: Cultivating collective resistance and joy through our relationships with nature and arts-based approaches

Presented by:
Jennifer Ma, PhD
Assistant Professor - Faculty of Social Work, University of Regina.

Dr. Ma’s research focuses on systemic oppression and addressing social inequalities through a critical race feminist, anti-colonial framework, and multi-method approaches, including critical statistics, participatory visual methods, and participatory action research. Her research interests revolve around social justice work with communities that are systemically discriminated against, including racialized people, migrants, and forcibly displaced people, children and families involved with child welfare, 2SLGBTIA+ people, and the intersections among these positionalities. Her research and practice involve addressing the trauma of Black, Indigenous, and racialized communities through a community-engaged model that connects healing and political agency.


During this talk, I will be discussing models of community-engaged, culturally relevant care, which provide opportunities for collective resistance, transformative healing, and joy. Providing support in the community, which is grounded in cultural ways of knowing, such as Buddhism and land-based theories, will contribute to efforts to stop the chronic overrepresentation of Indigenous, Black, and racialized peoples in institutions, such as the child welfare system and the criminal justice system. I will focus on my work facilitating nature-based approaches with marginalized communities in Toronto. Plants and gardens can be engaged with relationally to cultivate compassion and joy, and to create a community for people who may be socially isolated, such as forcibly displaced people. They may also be engaged through participatory action research to facilitate connecting to the land as a decolonizing practice and to facilitate critical discussions about colonialism, capitalism, and racism. These experiences indicate that relationships with plants and gardens in the community are a powerful response to the profound social and ecological challenges we currently face. In the end, I reflect on how these connections contribute to anti-colonial and anti-racist movements.

Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 975 2722 3531
Passcode: 357650