Newsletter  - January 2016


Welcome Cathy Coutts

The Board of Directors of Making Changes Association is pleased to announce that Cathy Coutts has joined the organization as the Executive Director, effective January 18th, 2016. 
Cathy brings a wealth of experience, expertise and dynamic leadership skills to her new role. Most recently, Cathy held the position of Executive Director at the Women in Need Society where she was responsible for the leadership, strategic planning and delivery of social programs. These programs focused on providing women with the resources, knowledge, skills and confidence to achieve self-sufficiency. Prior to that, she not only had a 30-year career at the Royal Bank of Canada where she worked in a variety of management and operational capacities, but also consistently volunteered with a number of organizations.
We are excited about the passion for community, energy, and skill set that Cathy brings to Making Changes. 
Join us in welcoming Cathy to the team. Please feel free to stop by Cathy’s office or send her an email and introduce yourself.
Welcome Cathy!


Employment and Life Skills Program Registration


Are you an immigrant woman who feels the need for a better future?
Do you need information about education and work opportunities?
Do you wish to improve your job search skills?
This is an opportunity to:

  • Increase your confidence
  • Identify and learn to market your skills
  • Practice job interviews and networking
  • Learn about Canadian Business Culture
  • Further develop your English language skills 
  • Develop a plan to reach your goals
Fee: Free for Immigrant Women
Where: 1000 Voices at the Genesis Centre of Community Wellness
            7555 Falconridge Boulevard NE, Calgary, T3J 0C9  (Saddletowne station)

When: Mondays, February 8 – March 28 
           (every Monday for 7 weeks, no class February 15)
Time: 9:30 am – 3:30 pm (Bring your lunch)
Childcare: Register for free childcare

To register email Elaine Lupul at:

Please include your telephone number, immigration status and ages of children requiring childcare.



A Wonderful Gift this Holiday Season


This holiday season, 132 volunteers participated in our gift-wrapping event at The Core Shopping Centre. Thanks to their gift of time and to the generosity of everyone who had their presents wrapped at our centre we were able to raise $5,600 for Making Changes.
On Black Friday, Hy’s Steakhouse offered an opportunity for The Core shoppers to satisfy their appetite and support our organization by hosting a special prime meatballs event with all profits going to Making Changes.
Our sincere thanks to all our volunteers, customers, The Core Shopping Centre and Hy’s Steakhouse for this wonderful gift!


learn more about our volunteering opportunities

Mark Your Calendar… and Start your Training!

This year again, Making Changes will be participating in the Scotiabank Calgary Marathon on Sunday May 29th. Don’t be scared by the name of this event! It offers races for all ages and fitness levels from a 5KM family walk & run to an ultra marathon.
Every day at Making Changes we meet courageous women who take important steps to make a better life for themselves and their families. Let’s join together and walk or run in support of their efforts.

If you are interested in joining our team and 
raising funds in support women building confidence and skills for a better future please contact Cathy Coutts at for potential registration support and team acknowledgement.   

Stay tuned for more details on registration, sponsorship opportunities and a few challenges for this year’s event!


Learn more about the Marathon

Volunteers Needed

We are in need of volunteers for our next bingo that will be held on February 7th from 10:30am to 3:30pm at the Grey Eagles (a smoking facility).
If you think you can help us with this event, please contact Patti by e-mail at or by phone at 403-262-5776.

Please make sure that you provide your name and telephone number.



Urgent Winter Clothing Need

It is January and cold outside so we are in great need of outerwear such as coats, boots, scarves, hats, gloves and mitts for both our closets.

We are also still accepting other warmer clothing items for the Walk-In Closet and would like to remind you that we accept all seasons clothing year-round at My Best Friend’s Closet.
Thank you for your generosity!




Bouquet of Thanks

We are very grateful to everyone who contributes in many ways to the success of our organization. This month we want to acknowledge the following individuals and organizations:
Stantec for their recent financial donation and for volunteering last Fall as part of their “Stantec in the Community Day”.
Deb from Rollin' Divas and Breanne, Kayla and their colleagues from Frilly Lilly in Kingsland for their donations of handbags filled with everyday essentials for our participants. 
Ryan Russell and Trevor Hofbauer from New Balance Canada and Sonja Redeker from Canadian Footwear Calgary who donated running shoes for our girls at My Best Friend's Closet. Sonja also brought a few goodies for the Walk-In Closet!
Lynda P., a My Best Friend’s Closet volunteer for organizing a coat drive at her office and with her friends. Her Warm Coats Warm Hearts initiative was a huge success... It raised over 200 coats for our closets.
We also want to take this opportunity to thank Sonia Okamoto, our My Best Friends Closet Program Manager for having gone above and beyond her regular duties over the past few months. Thank you Sonia for your leadership and outstanding work!





 Making Changes Employment Association of Alberta. © 2015