Michaela joined Diabetes Canada in the Food Skills for Families program in Feb 2017 with a background in nonprofit and educational programming. Prior to Food Skills Michaela worked at WE in school and youth programming. This experience combined with previous involvement working in international development, environmental advocacy and early childhood education has helped her develop a passion for building community and sharing knowledge. As a graduate of UBC she majored in political science and participated in a study abroad program in Singapore. Traveling, cooking and enjoying good food have always been favourite pass times. She prefers cooking to baking as her attempts at (healthy!) cookies and cakes always tend to flop. Michaela is a newly certified Food Skills for Families Community Facilitator and can’t wait to get into the kitchen and start cooking. She believes in the power of food and its ability to bring together and empower community and healthy and happy living.
Sam joined Diabetes Canada in 2010 when Food Skills for Families was only two years old and has played an integral role in the development and expansion of the program over the past six years. She completed the Food Skills for Families Train-the-Trainer program in 2014 which certified her as a Community Facilitator. Since then she has delivered a program at Kitsilano Neighbourhood House (with the CDA team) and is planning another program at Gordon Neighbourhood House in the fall of 2016. Prior to CDA Sam completed her Bachelors of Business as well as a Diploma in Marketing Communications at BCIT. She is an avid traveller, having completed a term of post-secondary as part of a travelling school in Europe. 2015 was a year of family vacations which took her to Hawaii and Alaska and in the fall of 2016 she visited Vietnam and Cambodia. At home Sam is a self-described food lover and enjoys sampling all variety of delicacy no matter how unusual; don’t be surprised if you see tentacles in her lunch.
Karen Coulson (Manager)
Karen joined Diabetes Canada and the Food Skills for Families team in August 2014. The first few years have seen growth with new partners and collaborations that have supported the purpose of the program to connect people in the kitchen, learn hands on cooking skills and make healthy eating easy, enjoyable and affordable. The opportunity to build relationships with committed and passionate health professionals, highly skilled volunteers, community partners and colleagues across Diabetes Canada is an amazing perk. She completed the Food Skills for Families Train the Trainer program in 2014. Originally from Ontario Karen has lived in BC for ten years after a brief time living in the UK. She describes herself as a wellness nerd and loves working in the world of healthy living and seeing the impact of the Food Skills program on how families eat and cook. She is currently studying holistic nutrition in her spare time and her food hero is Jamie Oliver! She loves to travel and hopes one day to spend some time living in Paris with her husband.