Find Your Voice Project

Find Your Voice Project

The Oral History Centre, CKUW 95.9 FM and the Finding Your Voice literary project have partnered to create the Find Your Voice Radio series which aired Thursdays at 11:30 am on CKUW 95.9 FM in Winnipeg.


The Finding Your Voice literary project published "The Past is Another Country," an anthology of stories by New Canadians. The collection represents the experiences of writers from China, Ethiopia, India, Kenya, Korea, Macedonia, Nigeria, the Philippines, Poland, Taiwan, and Uzbekistan.


The aim of the Find Your Voice Project was to bring to the airwaves a series of radio programs that featured stories, experiences, issues and challenges of New Canadians.


Four stories of the radio series are featured on the OHC site.


To read stories of the "Past is Another Country" check for an available copy at the Winnipeg Public Library.


Find Your Voice Project Participants

Weyni Abraha (Ethiopia)

Roselyn Advincula (Philippines)

German Cruz Reyes (Mexico)

Anne Monzon(Philippines)

Brianna Jeon (South Korea)

Lucy Kaikai (Sierra Leon)

Julia Kim (South Korea)

Florence Okwundili (Nigeria)

Nathaniel Ondaika (Kenya)

Daniela Petrovski (Macedonia)



Coordinators and Interviewers

Scott Price

Scott Price is a history student at the University of Winnipeg, studying Oral History. Scott has volunteered with CKUW for the past three years in the CKUW news collective. Currently Scott is a researcher at the Oral History center at the University of Winnipeg.


Kent Davies

Kent Davies is a former freelance journalist and longtime radio host with CKUW 95.9 FM. Kent has worked as a coordinator and instructor for the U of W ESL department, CKUW 95.9 FM and with various Winnipeg community groups. Currently he’s the Oral History Centre’s Audio Technician providing faculty, staff, students and community members with technical assistance for their research projects.


Nina Singh

Nina Singh grew up in a tiny village called Vigilance, situated on Guyana’s East Coast. She moved to Canada with her mother in 2009. After four years, she is still in transition, learning everyday to adjust to a new world with optimism and mindful criticism. She now works as co-facilitator for the Finding Your Voice Life Writing Program which is geared towards helping newcomers find their writing voice, while at the same time interacting and forming meaningful relationships with other newcomers. Nina believes that everyone, no matter what race, ethnicity or gender, should have the freedom to live a life without persecution and violence.


Janine LeGal

Janine LeGal is a freelance writer, community activist and the Communications Coordinator for the General Child and Family Services Authority.  She’s written stories for numerous magazines, websites, organizations, and newspapers including Canadian Immigrant and the Winnipeg Free Press.  She’s worked as program coordinator for the Canadian Authors Association, the Manitoba Writers’ Guild and is one of the three founders of the Writers’ Collective.  She’s also the founder and facilitator of Finding Your Voice, an ongoing creative writing program for new Canadians, a labour of love which brings people from all over the world into a classroom on Saturday mornings and empowers them to share their compelling stories of strength, resilience, and inspiring courage. 

Weyni Abraha

Weyni Abraha Grew up on the border of Ethiopia and Eritrea in a small village of about 500 people. When she was 13, she was told that she was old enough to take responsibility for herself and her younger brother. She and her brother left Ethiopia for a safer place. They lived in Uganda where they struggled to learn a new language and a new culture, and where they dealt with extreme homesickness. After many years of struggle, their uncle was able to sponsor them to come to Canada in 2007. Currently Weyni is a student at the University of Winnipeg. Her passion includes art and writing stories. She is currently studying international development and hopes to work with the UN or the Red Cross in future.

Audio File:

Find Your Voice Project Episode 1: Weyni Abraha

  • Weyni Abrahra. Picture by Celine Bonneville (Winnipeg Free Press)

Lucy Kaikai

Lucy Kaikai immigrated to Canada in 2004, under a Refugee Family Sponsorship Program. Before moving to Winnipeg, she lived in a refugee camp in the South East of Ghana for seven years. Lucy always seeks opportunities for personal growth and community development. In Sierra Leone, her country of origin, she worked as a volunteer in the Children’s Department of the Korean Presbyterian Mission. While in Ghana as a refugee, she served with the Red Cross in Education and Sports programs. Her volunteer services in Canada have included being a friendly visitor at a personal care home and helping Newcomers with English at the Salvation Army’s Multicultural Family Centre. She is a trained teacher who enjoys homeschooling her two children, preparing nutritious meals for her family, sewing and gardening.

Audio File:

Find Your Voice Project Episode 2: Lucy Kaikai

  • Lucy Kaikai

Dr. Nathaniel Chimasia Ondiaka

Dr. Nathaniel Chimasia Ondiaka was born in Kenya (East Africa), studied and graduated in the People’s Republic of China, practiced medicine, both conventional and traditional, in Guangzhou (Canton), China and Kenya as well. He is fluent in several languages including Luhya, Swahili, English, Mandarin, Cantonese, French and Japanese. He married Liwen Zhang upon graduating from a medical school in southern China. They have two children, both attending Winnipeg schools. He and the family immigrated to Canada in October 2004 as permanent residents. He is the president of the Kenyan Association of Manitoba, and works with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority in addition to acting as a consultant. Kenya is one of the most beautiful countries south of the Sahara endowed with natural wonders and animal species of many kinds.

Audio File:

Find Your Voice Project Episode 3: Nathaniel Chimasia Ondiaka

  • Nathaniel Chimasia Ondiaka

Briana Jeon

Briana Jeon had a happy life in South Korea. She enjoyed reading, especially fiction which took her into a fantasy world. She loves to look up at the sky with earphones in her ears and follow the planes. One day her parents decided that she needed to know how big the world was. They thought she needed a chance to be close to the world, so they asked her what she thought about moving to another country. She thought that they would move to a country like Australia, America, or England. She never thought she would come to Canada, but she came to Winnipeg when she was 15. She was shocked because she moved to Canada only two weeks after her parents told her. However, she is happy in Canada and is no longer homesick.

Audio File:

FYV Project Episode 4: Briana Jeon

  • Briana Jeon

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