Community Involvement

Community InvolvementOrganizers of more than 100 community events have invited Si to be an initiator/ facilitator and/or speaker at their events in Prince George, Quesnel, Prince Rupert, and Fort St. John., or in Sudbury, Hamilton, or Toronto.  Since 1999 Si has presented evenings of poetry and prose about women’s issues and poverty issues at the Women’s Bookstop in Hamilton, at the Elm Tree Bookstore in Sudbury, and at many other community locations. In Northern Ontario Si read at a variety of fundraising events, at Chapters, and at women’s socials and AGMs.

In the last ten years Si has also read multiple times for:

  • Jezebel’s Jam (an annual fundraiser for the Northern Women’s Centre)
  • at International Women’s Day events
  • at the First Nations Friendship Centre and at UNBC for December 6th ceremonies
  • in the park for Aboriginal Days
  • during Social Worker’s Association Week
  • at numerous Take Back the Night ceremonies
  • at Just West of Unruly 2 (a writer’s festival)
  • the Multicultural Association’s of both PG and Sudbury annual fundraiser
  • at fundraisers for the GALA / leukemia care
  • in a class for environmental studies
  • in creativity writing classes at UNBC
  • and at many other social justice–oriented events.

These events have raised thousands of dollars for non-profit organizations. These events also raise the wider public’s consciousness about social justice issues. 

Si has read poetry for CBC Radio since coming to Prince George. Si was interviewed for a Globe and Mail article. Her belief is that many complex social justice issues and equity issues can be approached from the popular education mode of creative writing and that they are received more open-mindedly than when they are presented only in scholarly forums.

Si's peers in the social work program (and in Education, First Nations studies, Women’s Studies, and English) are encouraging and validating of these endeavors; her gratitude and affection for them constantly grows. These years at UNBC have been dynamic and productive largely because of the support she have found here for transdisciplinary and multi-genre approaches.

Si has been interviewed many times for her involvement in the community. Below are just a few examples where she has been mentioned in the local news:

Si Transken with her husband Ken Belford, the poet. They attend and do volunteer readings at dozens of events each year. Si has read at more than 100 protests, rallies, fundraisers, and special events.

Si supports and affirms the important work of the following organizations:

The Northern Women's Centre - UNBC

The Northern Women’s Centre at UNBC is a non-profit organization committed to improving the quality of women’s lives in northern BC. Dr. Si Transken, Acting Chair of the UNBC School of Social Work, has been an integral part of the Northern Women’s Centre for many years.  She has contributed many hours of dedicated service to the Women’s Centre on countless occasions – including poetry readings at Jezebel’s Jam, Take Back The Night, December 6th, International Women’s Day; assisting with the writing of funding proposals/sitting on steering committees for various projects e.g. a recently held provincial women’s conference;  a DVD on harassment; and research on gender, addictions and homelessness;  as well as the supervision of many practicum students (BSW and MSW) who have been placed with the Northern Women’s Centre. Dr. Transken has a passion for her work that is infectious; it has been a joy and an honour to work with her. I greatly look forward to collaborating with her for many years to come!

Sarah Boyd-Noel
Centre Coordinator
Northern Women's Centre at UNBC


Si is involved in countless artivism projects (which combine art and activism), and is creating new pieces every day, representing multiple aspects of her research. Si uses artivism in her teaching, research and community engagement and outreach. For example, Si has a longtime artivist project with AWAC (check out her past students page to get a sense of how this has translated into research), and has also worked with a community garden to produce some gARTivist pieces. GARTivism is about exploring what gardening means to different people, and their memories around gardens (vegetable and flower). To check out some of Si's artivism, please check out her image galleries, which displays many different items of her work.

Annual Salmon Valley Women's Festival

We are gathering in sisterhood to celebrate, connect, share and teach, meet old friends and make new ones. There will be workshops, vendors, healings, body work, moon honouring, drumming, belly dancing, women's circles, meditations and so much more. A celebration of all women from all walks of life.

Si facilitates Artivism work throughout the festival each year. Please look through some of her image galleries to see pictures from the events. You can also check out the SVWF website here.

Homelessness Action Week 2011

Homelessness Action Week ran in Prince George during mid-October. Art created by women at AWAC and New Hope, as well as some of Si's own work, was displayed at the Fire Pit Cultural Drop-in Centre. The are was on display for more than a week.

See an article about Homelessness Action Week and the art display here.