How did you get started in cannabis?
I was a consumer. My daughter was a part of Women Grow in Vancouver and I met some of the women she connected with and one thing led to another. Danielle Jackson, who was the Women Grow leader at the time, asked me to be a part of Canexions and lead the Calgary chapter. Canexions was the first networking group in Calgary and Edmonton before legalization came about. I accepted and it evolved further into creating Symposia.
Tell us about being a cannatherapy consultant, what does that entail?
A cannatherapy consultant can take a few roles. One is holding space for someone’s experiences with cannabis, another is attending to a person who wants to try it for the first time and being a trusted companion if they experience any ill effects who can make sure that they have food, water etc on hand, in case they have a negative reaction or experience. It also means educating and leading circles where people can share their experiences and support each other through relating anecdotal experiences. It can take many forms depending on the individuals background, other holistic certifications they may have is an example.
Tell us about Symposia
Symposia is a gathering for women who celebrate the plant as well as those who want to learn more or how to incorporate it effectively in their life. The subject matter includes sexuality, parenting, ageing, cultivation and cuisine to name a few. Having gone to industry and public conferences, there is often little for the female consumer in terms of understandable material and subject matter. In addition, many females do not feel comfortable talking about their medical conditions except in a safe space. Women also are more apt to learn from another woman based on shared experiences. We looked at some of the issues that women wanted to with respect to cannabis and decided to provide an event that would address them. We invited Canadian women that we knew of that have made strides in their individual fields and are very knowledgeable. We assembled a “Living Library”. The speakers or guides as we refer to them were eager to participate, and we’ve barely scratched the surface of the talented wise women in cannabis world.
What will be some takeaways for attendees at Symposia?
The attendees will leave with practical knowledge that they can employ in their everyday lives as well as the opportunity to make real connections with the women guiding them. Because this is a more intimate event, everyone will have the opportunity to connect with others. Rather than lectures we have circles where everyone can share. Attendees will leave feeling relaxed, not stressed and inspired. Because we’re in a safe space, free from stigma or judgement, the women will have the freedom to express their concerns and experiences on a variety of subjects. Our goal is to empower women with knowledge, inclusivity and comfort too! We also encourage everyone to come as they are and be comfortable. Yoga pants are welcome! We also have entertainment planned for the ladies. including a burlesque lesson on Saturday night and a pyjama party afterwards. We want this to be fun as well. Because of the location they can even make it a girls weekend and share a room.
What do you like about collaborating with other women in the cannabis space?
I love creativity, the support and the things we have in common that form bonds.The energy is different. The sharing, empathy gives it a different vibe. We’re no less driven or stressed but the level of compassion and understanding is greater generally. We share stigmas and concerns that are not always present in mixed interactions, and we often instinctively know what other women are feeling and what they want.
Name 5 of your favourite women in weed that you'd like to give a shout out too.