We are very pleased to have done the “Opportunity Cost of Not Investing in Interpretation” report – it is so important to have clarity on these challenges and…

Hindia Mohamoud, Director, OLIP
All the WOW events that I went to were great – WOW does give a sense of a community trying to improve its attraction and retention!

Caroline Andrew
Professor, University of Ottawa
The WOW seminar on immigrant women’s nutrition and health was a step in the right direction towards closing the gap between academic researchers and service providers.

Josephine Etowa
Associate Professor, School of Nursing, University of Ottawa
The target beneficiary of the work of OLIP is the whole community. In this short period we have planted together important seeds for Ottawa’s development.  

Dick Stewart
OLIP Council
I’m really impressed with the level of energy and commitment around the Health and Wellbeing table and look forward to continuing collaboration between OLIP and OPH.

Marcela Tapia
Ottawa Public Health
My nomination is an indication that our hard work in building Canada is recognized. All we do is to serve the community in return for embracing us when we needed it.  

Mehdi Mahdavi
Ottawa Immigrant Entrepreneurship Awards Nominee
The Ottawa Chinese Community Service Centre is so happy to have joined the OLIP Health and Wellbeing Sector Table. It is clear that OLIP cares about immigrants and refugees and…

Wendy Tang, Ottawa Chinese Community Service Centre
I was happy to see integration to Algonquin territory and indigenous culture related programming in 2014 WOW. Please continue to involve local Aboriginal organisations and…

Linda Manning
WOW 2014 participant, Senior Fellow, University of Ottawa
The City of Ottawa will continue to play a lead role in the implementation of the Ottawa Immigration Strategy, just as we did in the founding of OLIP.

Steve Desroches
City Councillor and Deputy Mayor of Ottawa
Canada has been shaped by people who came from all over the world to build this country. WOW offers a platform for us to celebrate this history and the future it will help…

Alex Munter, Chair of the OLIP Council and President and CEO of the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario and Ottawa Children’s Treatment Centre

OLIP Executive

Abdirizak Karod

Executive Director, Somali Centre for Family Services

Abdirizak Karod has been the Executive Director of the Somali Centre for Family Services since 1995. Abdirizak believes without employment, integration…

Abdirizak Karod

Executive Director, Somali Centre for Family Services

Abdirizak Karod has been the Executive Director of the Somali Centre for Family Services since 1995. Abdirizak believes without employment, integration will be difficult for newcomers because communities are not intermingling and sharing their unique cultures; and this will create isolation for both the immigrants and host community. Therefore, through his work at the Somali Centre for Family Services, he has built a very outstanding network of different organizations and has advocated on behalf of the community to employ immigrants. While working full-time and raising his family, he went back to university to achieve his Masters of Project Management. He is also certified change management professional.

Deborah Tunis

Vice-Chair, OLIP Council

Ms. Tunis brings over 40 years of leadership experience in the Canadian public service in a variety of policy areas, including immigration, international…

Deborah Tunis

Vice-Chair, OLIP Council

Ms. Tunis brings over 40 years of leadership experience in the Canadian public service in a variety of policy areas, including immigration, international trade, social development and housing. In 2015, Ms. Tunis was named Special Coordinator for Syrian Refugee Resettlement, helping to lead the initiative that welcomed tens of thousands of Syrian refugees to Canada. In this key role, she coordinated provinces, municipalities, settlement agencies, donors and others to provide supports to Syrian refugees.

Clara Freire

Director, Employment and Social Services, Community and Social Services Department
City of Ottawa

Clara began her 28-year career starting on the front lines in community non-profits. Her front-line experience included supporting residents who were homeless…

Clara Freire

Director, Employment and Social Services, Community and Social Services Department
City of Ottawa

Clara began her 28-year career starting on the front lines in community non-profits. Her front-line experience included supporting residents who were homeless or at risk of homelessness, and serving adults facing significant social, economic and emotional barriers to social services. Through her 18-year career at the City, Clara has worked in Housing Services, on corporate programs and most recently in CSSD, leading client service initiatives and strategic plans as the Manager, Partner and Stakeholder Initiatives. In this role, Clara managed funding, social policy, community engagement and strategic initiatives such as the City's Municipal Immigration Strategy, Woman and Gender Equity strategy, the Integrated Neighbourhood Service Teams, Indigenous Reconciliation Action Plan, Community Funding Framework Review, Youth Futures, and the Mayor’s Somali Community Task Force. In March of this year, Clara took on the temporary role of Lead of the City’s COVID-19 Emergency Response Human Needs Task Force focused on responding to immediate, medium and long-term community needs, for example: food security, homelessness and sheltering, and outreach and social services. Clara has a Master's degree in Social Work and is a passionate ally in contributing to structural and systemic change and advancing equity and inclusion for all.

Dominique Dennery

Chair, OLIP Council

Born in Haiti, Dominique came to Ottawa at the age of three. A Black Canadian fluently bilingual in both official languages, she grew up immersed in immigrant…

Dominique Dennery

Chair, OLIP Council

Born in Haiti, Dominique came to Ottawa at the age of three. A Black Canadian fluently bilingual in both official languages, she grew up immersed in immigrant communities in the city, where she has lived, aside from a few years overseas, for sixty years. 

She has 25 years of experience working with groups and organizations to help them reach their goals and potential.  Her work in recent years included leading high-level consultations across the country on topics such as immigration, housing, gender-based violence, and racism. Dominique holds degrees and diplomas in French literature, management, leadership coaching, change management and facilitation. Her commitment to meaningful equity and anti-oppression work spans her entire career. 

In addition to her work as a facilitator and coach, Dominique is a sculptor, and her work has appeared in places like Gatineau City Hall, Parc Toussaint Louverture in Montreal, and private collections in Canada and overseas. As a former board member of the Ottawa Art Gallery, she worked to explore the intersection of artmaking and a sense of community, particularly in marginalized communities. 

Well recognized for both her art and her mediation, facilitation, and coaching work, Dominique is the recipient of numerous awards and honours, including the Key to the City of Montreal, the Gold Facilitation Impact Award, a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Regroupement Affaires Femmes, and a Mosaique Intercultural Award for her work as a trailblazer. In 2018 she was selected as one of the 100 Accomplished Black Women in Canada.