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Cleia Sangster

Manager of Anti-Racism Initiatives & Program Coordinator of Newcomer Women's Projects

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Cleia was born and raised on the traditional territories of the Kanien'kehá:ka (Mohawk) and Haudenosaunee Peoples, also known as Montréal, Québec. Cleia grew up bilingual in English and French and was raised by parents who had immigrated to Canada from Jamaica, West Indies. Cleia holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a PhD in Developmental Psychology and moved to the non-profit sector after 10 years in academia.


Cleia has been with VIRCS since 2017. She began as a front desk volunteer, then joined the VIRCS staff as Program Coordinator for Enable. In 2018, she started working with Newcomer Women’s Projects (NWP) and became the NWP Program Coordinator in 2019. In March of this year (2023), Cleia also acted as Interim Manager of Anti-Racism Initiatives (ARI) at VIRCS, until her designation to lead ARI.

Cleia feels it’s a privilege to work at VIRCS, with and beside so many people from so many different parts of the world and says she can’t imagine working anywhere else.

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