Blog > Sexual Violence Prevention Month Community Conference

Sexual Violence Prevention Month Community Conference

May 1, 2023

The first ever SACHA SVPM­CC will take place on May 18th at The Gas­works (141 Park St N, Hamil­ton, ON L8R 2N4)

This is an oppor­tu­ni­ty for com­mu­ni­ty to come togeth­er to learn and dream of a world free of sex­u­al vio­lence. We will have 4 ses­sions through­out the day that cov­er top­ics of pre­ven­tion and sup­port­ing sur­vivors as well as oppor­tu­ni­ties for net­work­ing and to con­nect with local com­mu­ni­ty orga­ni­za­tions. We will also have a self­ie sta­tion where we are ask­ing par­tic­i­pants to take a pho­to wear­ing their favourite pur­ple out­fits and post these pho­tos with the hash­tags #SVPM­CC and #NoOneAsks­ForIt to show love and sol­i­dar­i­ty to survivors.

This con­fer­ence is free to attend but if you would like to make a dona­tion to sup­port our work with sur­vivors you can e‑transfer htee@​sacha.​ca with the mes­sage SVPM­CC”. If you are a ser­vice provider and are attend­ing we sug­gest a dona­tion of $30 and are hap­py to send an invoice to your orga­ni­za­tion upon request.

If you need to get in con­tact with the con­fer­ence orga­niz­ers please email sabreina@​sacha.​ca and miranda@​sacha.​ca

Please note that mask­ing is required at this event. 



9:30am — 10:00am - Registration

10:10am — 10:30am - Welcome

MC - Jessica Bonilla-Damptey, SACHA Director

10:30am— 11:30am - Bystander Intervention

Facilitator - Miranda Jurilj, SACHA Public Education Coordinator

11:40am — 12:40pm - Trauma-Informed Care Panel

Moderator - Rand Clayton, SACHA Counsellor

Panelists - Noura Afify, Speqtrum 2S-LGBTQIA+ Newcomer Support Worker

Nicky Bomberry, HRIC Aboriginal Healing and Wellness Coordinator

Miriam Sager, SACHA Crisis Support Program Coordinator

12:40pm— 1:40pm - Lunch

Ordered from Tigris Shawarma

Includes: chicken shawarma (halal), pita bread (vegan), falafel (vegan),

salad vegan), rice (vegan)

1:50pm  — 2:50pm - Options After Assault

Facilitators - Koubra Haggar, HCCI Manager of Programs

3:00pm — 4:00pm - Building Consent Culture Panel

Moderator - Sabreina Dahab, SACHA Diverse Communities Outreach Program Coordinator

Panelists - Lenore Lukasik-Foss, McMaster SVPRO Director

Jelena Vermillion, SWAP Executive Director

Ahona Mehdi, DJNO Education Project Coordinator

4:00pm — 4:20pm - Closing with Mindful Moves

Facilitator - Robin Lacambra, SACHA Counsellor

Speak­er Bios

Jessica Bonilla-Damptey is a Latinx/Indigenous woman from El Salvador, living and raised in Hamilton. She is the Mother of 2, Tia of 4 and Madrina of 3. She is often involved in community based projects and believes that it is important to include children in those projects. Hikes, dance parties, sorbet, being in water and in hammocks are some of her favourite things. A graduate of the School of Social Work, Indigenous Studies and Health Studies Programs at McMaster University, she committed to and works to creating a world without violence and oppression. Jessica is the Director of the Sexual Assault Centre (Hamilton and Area) – SACHA.

Miranda is the Public Education Coordinator at SACHA. In this role Miranda works with any group in the community interested in learning more about sexual violence prevention, the interconnectedness of sexual violence and oppression, and how to support survivors. Miranda values community care, action, empowerment, and knowledge sharing as tools to fight oppression and ending all forms of violence. Their approach to Bystander Intervention facilitation relies on understanding power and using an anti-racist, anti-oppressive framework when learning how to intervene in the many ways violence shows up in our lives. Their workshops aim to be interactive and allow for mutual learning and knowledge sharing from participants and facilitator. In addition to being a Pub Ed, Miranda is a poet, music lover, baker, and cat mom!

Rand is proud to be part of the counselling team at SACHA and support Hamilton community members in their healing journeys. They fundamentally believe all counselling and mental healthcare should be free and find it meaningful to be able to provide low-barrier services to survivors. Rand is passionate about more personal and less clinical approaches to healing, such as connecting with service users over shared experiences like navigating the world as a gender-marginalized or queer person. Outside of SACHA, Rand plays the tuba and is a community organizer against sexual violence and bigotry in the marching arts.

Noura's journey started when she found herself a food bank user who's coordinating a campus food bank. It was this experience that led her to the answers to all her questions and frustrations with the system, community and mutual aid. With her new found community, together they transformed that food bank to something much bigger. When she moved to Hamilton and began working at The SPACE Youth Center, her ideas of community was constantly challenged and expanded. She now works at the YWCA in a joint effort between speqtrum Hamilton and Join Immigration and Settlement Services to facilitate Hamilton's first 2S-LGBTQIA+ Newcomer Program.

Miriam Sager (she/her) is a white, Ashkenazi Jewish woman. She has been volunteering, and then working, in support of survivors of sexual violence for 30 years, including 17 as Coordinator of SACHA's Crisis Support Program. She has worked as community organizer in marginalized communities, and volunteered in palliative care.

Nicky has been the Aboriginal Healing and Wellness Coordinator at the Hamilton Regional Indian Centre for 13 years. She is from Six Nations of the Grand River and is Turtle Clan from Seneca Nation. She lives in a multi-generational home with her parents and three great-nieces and nephew. She has raised these three and considers them her children. She is currently excited for her new role as grandma as one of her girls is due to have a baby any day. The focus of her role at HRIC is the prevention of family violence and promotion of healthy lifestyles. Over 13 years she facilitated Men’s Circles, Kid’s Grief and Bereavement, Adult Grief and Bereavement, Anger Management, Healthy Relationships and provided ID clinics.

Koubra Haggar is the Manager of Programs for the Hamilton Centre for Civic Inclusion. Alongside the Hamilton Anti-Racism Resource Centre, HCCI recently launched an online community-based hate reporting tool to reimagine avenues to eliminate hate in Hamilton and provide the community with tangible supports to navigate their experiences. Koubra is passionate about being and growing in a community of care and solidarity actively working to improve our presents and futures. She is also part of a research team at McMaster University working to develop and implement anti-racist approaches to pedagogy within the Faculty of Science, co-creating the course SCIENCE 2AR3 – Foundations of Science: 
Equity, Justice & Anti-Racism in Science.

Sabreina Dahab (she/her) runs the Diverse Communities Outreach Program at the Sexual Assault Centre (Hamilton and Area). Through her work at SACHA, she strives to create spaces and programming for survivors who have to navigate systemic barriers when accessing supports in Hamilton. Sabreina is the Ward 2 HWDSB Trustee and currently completing her Masters at McMaster University.

Ahona Mehdi (they/she) is a 20-year old community organizer and undergraduate student based in Hamilton, Ontario. Ahona is passionate about disability justice, anti-oppression, abolition and dismantling the school-to-prison pipeline. From 2019 to 2020, they were a student trustee with the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board (HWDSB), where they exposed issues of racism, Islamophobia and ableism among the HWDSB board of trustees. In 2022, they also ran for HWDSB trustee in the City of Hamilton’s municipal election. Currently, Ahona acts as a Director at the Centre for Diverse Learners (CDL) and is the Education Project Coordinator/former Just Recovery Project lead at the Disability Justice Network of Ontario (DJNO). In her work, she conducts research on the impacts of violence, criminalization and the school-to-prison pipeline on queer, racialized and disabled youth. Ahona works to create networks for racialized, Muslim disabled and queer youth to connect, co-learn, heal, love and reimagine a world where students can learn outside of these carceral systems.

Lenore Lukasik-Foss (she/her) has worked in the anti-gender-based violence movement for over 30 years. In 2022, she started a new role at McMaster University as the inaugural Director of the Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office and Anti-Oppression Programs. Previously, she was the Director of the Sexual Assault Centre in Hamilton for over 15 years and Chair of the Ontario Coalition of Rape Crisis Centres for five of those years. She also worked in many capacities at Good Shepherd, including Chief Operating Officer of Non-Profit Housing and Director at Women’s Services. Lenore strives to ground her work in intersectionality, community connection, and joy.

Jelena Vermilion [She/Her] is the Founder and Executive Director of SWAP Hamilton; is a trans-femme full-service sex worker, porn performer, and activist of almost a decade, who lives with disabilities. She has limited experience being incarcerated, being homeless, working outdoors and on the street, and as an undocumented migrant in the US. She has been featured in several national media outlets speaking about the decriminalization of the sale/trade of sexual services. Jelena provides professional best practices workshop trainings and public speaking engagements for organizations and agencies who wish to affirm the rights and dignity of sex workers. Jelena also advocates more broadly for marginalized women and non-binary folks, particularly those living with or at risk of contracting HIV. She is a consultant with Trans Pulse Canada and has helped co-author academic articles and research reports for community members and policymakers.

Robin Lacambra is a queer filipina that is a speaker, feeler, mover and creator, passionate about building cultures of compassion within ourselves and with each other. As founder of GOODBODYFEEL Studio, a
wellness business prioritizing progressive values; somatic coach; social justice advocate, counsellor at the Sexual Assualt Centre of Hamilton Area and relational psychotherapist-in-training, Robin believes that
there is always an intersection worth exploring and sharing. She works to create and strengthen bridges between various industries and social causes, and in doing so, directs the Safer Spaces Project, developed the
Sharing Privilege Online Course, as well as a 200 hour Empowered
Embodiment Program, focused on radical inclusivity, accessibility and belonging for each and every body.