We have put together an incredible team of volunteer support staff and practitioners to guide you through the weekend.
Shawna Rich-Ginsberg – Retreat Support
Shawna has been with Rethink Breast Cancer for almost 6 years, working to support and advocate for young women at every stage of the disease. With a background in grief and bereavement work, Shawna brings a deep understanding of the nature of trauma and what it is like to experience a loss of identity and self due to illness. Prior to her work at Rethink, Shawna worked with children, youth and families in helping them to cope with adversity and transitional events that impact their daily lives. She is always looking for ways to empower women and help them to make their own choices around their illness and lives.
Shawna is also a mother of two boys, an avid runner and has a moderate yoga practice. She is excited to carry Jasmin’s legacy forward with Stretch Heal Grow and can’t wait to see firsthand how transformative yoga and building community can be for young women with breast cancer.
Leo Mowry – Yoga Teacher, Reiki Master, Author
Leo owns Village Yoga in Toronto, where she teaches private and group classes, specializing in helping people relieve chronic pain with therapeutic yoga. She is the host of A Brand New Day, the empowering yoga-inspired TV show on Rogers TV. Leo is also the co-author of “Advancing Your Yoga Practice: The Art of Slowing Down”, the fifth book in the world-renowned Anatomy and Asana series, and the creator of “The Voice of Relaxation, Volume 1”, her first cd of guided relaxations.
She is a certified Reiki Master, the Yoga Director for the Toronto Trails Festival and Ontario Walks, a 2-time lululemon ambassador and an ongoing contributor of expertise and articles for various TV shows, web sites, and publications. To learn more, visit www.villageyoga.ca. You can find her on Facebook at facebook.com/leomowry
Shastri Jil Amadio – Meditation Instructor
Jil is a practitioner of mindfulness-based disciplines since 1989 and has been training Meditation Instructors and offering mindfulness training since 1995. Known for her warm heart and keen insight, she provides support for mindfulness teachers and meditation students alike, leading workshops in both the US and Canada. Jil previously served as Practice and Education Director for the Shambhala Meditation Centre of Toronto before being appointed Shastri (senior teacher) by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche in the Shambhala tradition. Jil’s corporate life is is in Marketing and Strategic Communication, working in areas such as crisis and change management, branding, and media skills training. She sits on the board of an international NGO that works in child rights advocacy. Jil is inspired to help people authentically touch their lives, helping dissolve the barriers between ourselves and a joy-filled life, amidst whatever challenges we encounter.
Jen Lagzdins – Retreat Logistics
Jen has worked at Rethink Breast Cancer for over 6 years, with her role evolving alongside the organization from support & education program development to volunteer management and fundraising development. She has participated in building Stretch Heal Grow since it was just a new, twinkling idea and adores the constant opportunities to strive for change and work with and for so many inspiring women.
Jen is passionate about holistic health and loves to help others get in their bodies: she is certified in Thai Yoga Massage, an avid dancer (anytime. anywhere), an expert hugger, and has a yoga and meditation practice that spans nearly 20 years. She is hopelessly in love with life and all of it’s beauty and adventure, Mama to a fiery wild child, and probably eats too much chocolate. Building and participating in community is one of her greatest passions and if you want to try out a paddleboarding (or any water sport) at Trillium’s gorgeous Devine Lake – she’s your gal
Melanie Gordon – Photographer
The incredible photography for the 2016 Retreat and on this website courtesy of Melanie Gordon Photography. “I am a collector of unscripted moments. For the past 20 years, I have been inquiring into the nature of time, the meaning of home, and the shifts in my own identity as a woman, mother and artist. My current photographic practice involves exploring the space between reality and imagination while connecting with the magic of the natural world with my daughter. My photographs have been described as intimate and magical tellers of stories. My work has been exhibited in galleries and published in magazines and books in Canada and internationally.”