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CFUW to walk a mile in her shoes this International Women's Day

A virtual presentation will hear stories of three women and their journeys to Canada followed by a solidarity walk on March 8
Umut Duyga Uzunel (from left), Teenza Javat, and Verushka Samarkina will speak at the CFUW virtual event.

The Aurora-Newmarket chapter of the Canadian Federation of University Women (CFUW) is taking a walk in her shoes this International Women's Day. 

On March 8, the group is hosting a virtual presentation in partnership with The Shoe Project. Founded in 2011 by Toronto novelist Katherine Govier, it creates writing and speaking opportunities for immigrant and refugee women to share their journey through the metaphor of a pair of shoes. 

The CFUW presentation will feature three different stories. 

Umut Duyga Uzunel came to Canada from Turkey in 2017, escaping political unrest. She was reunited with her children 18 months after arriving here. Now she is studying naturopathic medicine as a way to help others. 

Teenaz Javat has been in Canada since 1997. The journalist describes herself as Indian by blood, Pakistani by bond and Canadian by choice. She works as a senior write, writing headlines for the CBC. 

Verushka Samarkina came to Canada from Russia in 2009. She has a PhD in literature, 20 years of experience as a teacher and now works as an ESL instructor. 

All three are alumni of The Shoe Project and will share their own journeys through the metaphor of shoes. 

“The women’s stories are inspiring and powerful,” says Cordelia Tang, executive director, and an alumna of The Shoe Project. “The courage they demonstrate in overcoming obstacles to create new lives often brings our audiences to tears.” 

Tang will also take part in the presentation to speak more about the project and introduce the speakers. 

Members of the community are invited to attend the virtual event from 10 a.m. to noon on March 8. You can register by contacting [email protected].

After the presentation, the celebration of International Women's Day will continue with a walk in solidarity with sisters around the world. The walk, which is an annual tradition for the group, will meet at the Water Street bridge in Newmarket at 1 p.m. 



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Elizabeth Keith

About the Author: Elizabeth Keith

Elizabeth Keith is a general assignment reporter. She graduated from Carleton University with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2017. Elizabeth is passionate about telling local stories and creating community.
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