I hope you, your family, friends and colleagues have all been well. Despite all of the changes we’ve been through recently, our cluster has been busy. Here is an update on what we’ve been up to and a few opportunities for you to keep in mind.


Women’s Health Blog

We are seeking writers to contribute to our Women’s Health Blog. Blogs should be between 1000-2000 words and can be on any topic related to women’s health (e.g. sex and gender based analysis, sex-based health inequities, gendered experiences in the healthcare system, policy issues impacting women’s health). Check out our first blog about how sex and gender can advance our knowledge on COVID-19 as an example. 


CIHR’s Fall 2020 Project Grant competition is back on! Submissions for the Spring competition will be reviewed this summer and the Fall competition “remains on track to be develiverd”. Read more here.

Upcoming Events

Gynecologic Cancer Initiative—Graduate Webinar Series

Our friends at the Gynecologic Cancer Initiative are excited to present a free 8-week webinar series for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows, providing a fulsome overview of the molecular biology, epidemiology, prevention and treatment of all gynecologic cancers. You’ll learn from experts who will introduce the basics of gynecologic cancer while also discussing the latest advances and research in their field. Their first webinar will be held on June 5th. 

Click here to register

Women's Health Seminar Series

In light of the pandemic, we canceled the remainder of our 2019/2020 seminar series. We’ve reached out to speakers from canceled seminars and asked them to contribute to our 2020/2021 series so you won’t miss out on any of their talks! Our 2020/2021 series (starting September 14th) has a great lineup of topics to explore including intergenerational transmission of domestic violence, knowledge translation, and perimenopause. Registration has opened for next fall’s Seminar Series, so be sure to add us to your schedule by clicking here. We have nearly 120 registrants so far!

Certificates of completion for the 2019-2020 series will be emailed to all eligible trainees in the upcoming weeks.

Recent Events

Women's Brain Health: Young Investigators Symposium

Given the need to postpone our inaugural Women’s Brain Health Conference to April 2021, we decided to host a symposium to keep the momentum going. The Women’s Brain Health: Young Investigators Symposium offered young professionals the opportunity to build their presentation skills and share research about women’s brain health. This event featured seven talks from Young Investigator Award winners and provided a platform for professionals to showcase their research posters. Posters and video presentations were available online prior to the event for registrants and a Q&A was held to discuss questions with authors.

This event was open to the public and had 68 registrants from around the world (Mexico, Iran, New Zealand, Norway, Germany, USA, UK, Canada) as well as across Canada (ON, BC, AB, NFL). Participants encompassed a wide range of professionals including students, yoga instructors, brain injury specialists, scientists, wellness coaches, and retired educators. In total we had 26 poster presenters that presented on numerous topics within 3 categories: Injury and Diseases, Mental Health and Sex Hormnes & Sex Differences. Thanks to our incredible tech team, we evaded 2 attempts by Zoom Bombers to hack our event.

In addition to receiving lots of positive feedback, we received 11 new cluster members and 13 new Twitter followers as a result of this event!

Trainee Blitz

Our dedicated Cluster Trainee Leads held an online event on April 30th that featured 5 short, blitz-style presentations by trainees about their women's health research projects. We were particularly pleased with the geographical diversity of our presenters—2 speakers came to us from McMaster University in Ontario, Canada (Jennifer Williams & Zaryan Masood), 2 were from UBC in Vancouver, BC (Sonia Milani & Sadaf Sediqi) and 1 was from UBC Okanagan in Kelowna BC (Alex Lukey). Read more about our presenters here. This event had 28 registerants and generated 4 new Twitter followers.

When Love Hurts: Exploring The Intersection of Intimate Partner Violence and Traumatic Brain Injury

On April 20th we hosted a webinar with Dr. Paul van Donkelaar and Karen Mason (co-founders of SOAR). Sadly, we discovered the hard way that meetings related to women’s issues are targeted by Zoom Bombers and had to cut the meeting short. In its place we recorded the entire presentation, uploaded it to YouTube and held a live Q&A session on May 25th. This session was attended by 20 participants and generated 1 new Twitter follower. In addition, the video was viewed 124 times.

New Members

We’d like to formally welcome the following new members to our cluster. We’re happy to have you working alongside us to support women’s health!

  • Maria Shock—Behavioural Neuroscience undergraduate at UBC
  • Sandra Jara—Trainee at UBC
  • Kiranjot Jhajj—Trainee at the University of Northern British Columbia
  • Dr. Erika Estrada-Camarena—Researcher at the National Institute of Psychiatry in Mexico City
  • Dr. Claudia Barth—PDF at the Norwegian Centre for Mental Disorders Research, University of Oslo
  • Dr. Veronica Guadagni—PDF at the Laboratory of Human Cerebrovascular Physiology, University of Calgary
  • Dr. Mahshad Mohammad Noori—Psychology Instructor at Vancouver Career College
  • Dr. Melissa Woodward—PDF at the BC Mental Health and Substance Use Service Research Institute
  • Dr. Rachel Hana—Psychiatrist at the University of Toronto
  • Dr. Andrea Araujo—Registered Clinical Counsellor and Sessional Lecturer in the Department of Psychology at UBC
  • Sonia Hasani—MSc of Midwifery at the Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Iran
  • Holly Dempster—Trainee, Memorial University of Newfoundland
  • Neelam Punjani—Ph.D. Candidate at the Faculty of Nursing, University of Alberta
Now Accepting Donations

Like many of us, the Women’s Health Research Cluster has taken a hit financially due to COVID-19. In addition to seeking new sources of funding, we’ve also started collecting donations.

If you feel passionate about the work we are doing and are in a position to give, consider making a one-time or monthly donation. 100% of proceeds will be used to promote women’s health research across public, government and academic domains.

Donate Here
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