Lynn Jones, a native of Truro, will be one of two featured speakers at the Lotus Centre's International Women's Day event this year. Submitted photo

TRURO – The Lotus Centre in Truro is celebrating International Women’s Day with a theme of Balance for Better.

The event, which runs from noon to 1 p.m. on March 8 at the Best Western Glengarry, will feature guest speakers Chris Cochrane and Lynn Jones, who will deliver thought-provoking and educational speeches on intersecting inequalities such as gender, race, class, and sexual orientation.

The Kin’ap singers – featuring Jaici Syliboy, Summer Sylliboy, and Onnah Mackerney – will perform the opening ceremony. Jaici Syliboy is a 12-year-old Indigenous activist from Sipekne’katik First Nation. She starred in the video Powerless by Classified bringing awareness to Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women (MMIW) and abuse. She is a jingle dress dancer who has traveled the Maritime Provinces participating in a variety of events and powwows.

Summer Sylliboy is an Indigenous dancer from Millbrook First Nation who also starred in the Powerless video by Classified bringing awareness to MMIW and abuse. She has traveled the Maritimes participating in a variety of events and powwows.

Onnah Mackerney is an Indigenous youth from Manitoba. She has traveled the Maritime Provinces participating in several events and powwows.

The Kin’ap singers, featuring Onnah Mackerney, Jaici Syliboy, and Summer Sylliboy, will open the International Women’s Day event hosted by the Lotus Centre.
Submitted photo

Featured speaker Chris Cochrane is a POC transgender activist originally from Glace Bay, Cape Breton. Now living in Halifax, she is better known by her drag persona Elle Noir.

She is esthetician and makeup artist by trade, where she works independently as well as with stage and film. Cochrane is known for her outspoken words on the current and past climate of the world. She has been at the forefront of many issues dealing with both the LGBTQIIA2 community as well as the POC community.

As of 2018, she has now completed her surgical transition, but still wants to educate and learn from life’s experiences. So if you know her as Elle or as Chris she is known for spanning many communities and continues to try to bring those communities together.

Chris Cochrane is one of two featured speakers at this year’s International Women’s Day event hosted by the Lotus Centre.
Submitted photo

Featured speaker Lynn Jones is the first African Canadian to join the executive ranks of the Canadian Labour Congress, and to be elected General Vice-President. Jones has served her community, and this nation, in multiple ways over the course of a long and distinguished career.

A native of Truro and one of 10 children in a family of community leaders, Jones has been a life-long civil and human rights activist. Her protest has always focused on all aspects of social, political, and economic inclusion, with special attention to issues of feminism, class, race, ability, and poverty.

She is an educator, community and labour organizer.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at MacQuarries Pharmasave on the Esplanade. Tickets include access to the event, lunch, dessert, and tea or coffee.

All proceeds go to programs supported by the Lotus Centre.