Diversity and Inclusion Starts with Ourselves

By Jane Litchfield

Think of a time you were discriminated against, felt oppressed or marginalized. Think how that made you feel.

That’s how Malissa Bryan of Rainbow Diversity Institute invited us into an online workshop on equity, diversity, and inclusion that I recently took part in as a GAC board and committee volunteer. The workshop was one of the actions GAC pledged to do as part of its commitment to anti-racism.

“The best place to start is with ourselves,” Malissa said.

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Malissa Bryan, Founder of Rainbow Diversity Institute. Photo by Malissa Bryan

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GAC JOB OPPORTUNITY: Manager of Programs & Operations

Guelph Arts Council (GAC) is a charitable organization that champions and supports arts and culture in Guelph. We are currently seeking a dynamic individual for the shared role of Manager of Programs & Operations. Within a small staff team, the successful candidate will work closely with their partner in the role, and the Executive Director, to support GAC’s mission.

The successful candidate will be passionate about art and community, and contribute to GAC’s mission with their programming vision and communications acumen. Specific duties will include:

Communications (lead): championing GAC members, programs, and projects, and building awareness of the value of the arts, through semi-monthly e-newsletters, social media, and guelpharts.ca; providing staff support to related volunteer committees; and supporting the development of communications plans. The position will also be responsible for co-managing the spring 2021 launch and the ongoing content development and service plans for a new guelpharts.ca website

Programs (lead): in collaboration with GAC staff and volunteers, implementing and evaluating GAC programs, events, and projects, including volunteer recruitment and management, and supporting the creation and development of new opportunities and community partnerships through programs and projects

Membership (support): assisting with membership processing, managing renewals, and delivering member benefits (when required)

Operations (support): assisting with maintaining financial records, administering invoicing and payments, banking, and financial reporting; maintaining electronic and hard files (when required)

The position also supports the hiring, training, and supervision of seasonal staff and co-op or practicum students.


  • Strong communication, interpersonal, customer service, and relationship-building skills
  • Strong project management skills with the ability to oversee concurrent projects, timelines, and deadlines
  • Ability to work independently and in a collaborative team environment, and to lead volunteer groups
  • Strong computer skills, including proficiency with Microsoft Office suite and some familiarity with website content management systems
  • Experience with social media and communication, design, virtual meeting and events platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Hootsuite, YouTube, and Zoom. Familiarity with Mailchimp, Jotform, Canva, Eventbrite and/or similar online tools is an asset
  • Experience in planning and delivering arts programs and events

The ideal candidate will have a background in the arts, and be knowledgeable about the issues, opportunities, and challenges in the sector. Video-editing skills and knowledge of accounting software, preferably Quickbooks, would be assets, but are not required.

This part-time position is 20 hours per week, with opportunities for project-based increases. Some evening and weekend work is required. The starting salary is $20,100 annual plus a benefits package. Expected start date is May 3, 2021. Guelph Arts Council is located in downtown Guelph, Ontario.

Please submit your resumé with cover letter by email only no later than 11:59 pm on Thursday, April 8, 2021. Only applicants selected for an interview will be contacted.

Send applications to:

Patti Broughton, Executive Director
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Guelph Arts Council invites applications from all qualified individuals. We strive to be inclusive of BIPOC, LGBTQ2S+, newcomer, youth, low-income, Deaf people, and people with disabilities in all our employment practices. If you face any barriers to applying, please contact Patti at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 519-836-3280.

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Community, Arts, and the COVID-19 Pandemic: Impacts and Outcomes Survey

Community, Arts, and the COVID-19 Pandemic: Impacts and Outcomes is a research project part of the course, Arts-Based Community-Making, by graduate students, in the Critical Studies in Improvisation Program at the University of Guelph under the supervision of Dr. Ajay Heble, Principal Investigator (PI), in collaboration with Guelph Arts Council (GAC).  

The graduate student researchers on this team are Ann, Erin, Dave, and Steve.

Our team is researching how the COVID-19 Pandemic is impacting the arts community in Guelph. We recognize that due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, creative artists and arts-based organizations have faced many disruptions to their livelihood, initiatives, programs, and creative practices. 

We want to hear how you, the creative artists, and the arts-based organizations, have responded to, adapted, and improvised your work, events, programming, engagement, and funding over the past year. 

We understand that improvisation is both a creative practice and a social practice. In our Critical Studies in Improvisation Graduate Program and at the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI), we recognize and value how creative artists arts-based organizations have improvised innovative and dynamic responses to these uncertain times of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

At the end of the survey, you will have an opportunity to provide your contact information if you would like to participate in a follow-up interview to share more about your experiences as an artist or arts-based organization during the COVID-19 Pandemic. 

We greatly appreciate your participation in our survey!

Survey Link: https://uoguelph.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_b93myVTYRyCr5mm

The survey is open until March 31, 2021, at 11:59 pm (EST).

Monthly Musical Member Video - Nefe

Each month we’ll feature a video from one of Guelph’s musical community members. If you’re a musician and have a video you’d like us to feature, please send a YouTube link our way along with a short bio.

Carrying on from last month’s video which featured a Hillside Inside performer, we have one this month from an artist who is no stranger to the Hillside stage, Nefe. Having most recently performed a virtual set for Winter Pride here in Guelph, Nefe’s latest single “Lipstick Wish” found its way to CBC Music’s Top 20 chart in December. It’s a great song, but for today’s video, we visit Nefe’s 2017 EP and it’s beautiful title track, “Mama”.


Adept listeners might be able to trace Nefe’s genre-defying sound back to her endless influences from folk to pop or R&B to reggae but what listeners will actually hear is an idiosyncratic sound that can only be described as 3-dimensional – affecting the listener’s heart, mind and soul. Nefe’s power has been described as her ability to make you feel before you can think. Her vocal range and precision vibrates with the healing tradition of ancient wisdom that belies her youth. Nefe’s voice is the salve that cuts through the pandemonium of the modern world.

Find more information on Nefe’s website and Facebook. While we couldn’t find the Mama EP there, we wanted to let you know that Bandcamp will once again be foregoing their share of artist sales on the first Friday of March. Have more of your music dollars find their way into the pockets of your favourite local musicians by visiting their Bandcamp pages on March 5th.

And now for your viewing, listening, and emotional pleasure (especially if you have ever had a great maternal figure in your life), here’s Nefe’s “Mama”.

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