Manager of Anti-Oppression, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Rona Jualla van Oudenhoven
Manager of Anti-Oppression, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Over the past two and half decades, Rona has focused her attention on issues related to violence and oppression, with an emphasis on children’s rights, systemic and cultural components of violence such as poverty, racism, sexism, and promoting equity and inclusion through a rights-based approach in policy and programs in Canada and abroad. A few include:

  • International Girl Power Program in Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nicaragua
  • Family and community empowerment program in Palestine
  • ‘Positive Deviance’ in Kenya
  • Refugee programs in Thailand and Burma
  • World Bank’s work with various regions in Siberia, with indigenous Sakha peoples
  • Violence against children and women, Jamaica, Palestine, Romania, Suriname
  • Rights-based Approaches to Gender Education in the Caribbean
  • Inclusive programming for persons with disabilities/exceptionalities in South Africa
  • Micro-financing in rural India
  • Marginalization of Roma people in Central Europe
  • Street children, European Union – Italy, Nicaragua and Trinidad and Tobago
  • Young black marginalized youth in Canada and the Caribbean
  • Restorative Justice practice in collaboration with Indigenous Peoples in Canada

She was attached for nine years to the International Child Development Initiatives (ICDI) in the Netherlands/Canada as an independent consultant, specializing in research, diversity and equity training, program management, monitoring and evaluation before taking on the contract of Consultant/Director, Diversity, Inclusion and Transitions at Durham College.  At the College, Rona managed the indigenous, student life, first generation, diversity, equity and sexual violence portfolios. Prior to that, she has held senior managerial and supervisory positions in human resources, research and policy development, presented at numerous seminars and functioned as a teacher-trainer and lecturer. Most recently she was a visiting lecturer at the University of the West-Indies, teaching a master’s course on children’s rights: policy into practice (Fall 2018).

Rona has published works include investigative studies on street persons; exploration of adult education with a focus on teacher-training, teacher-type and corporal punishment; the application of a rights-based approach in the understanding and analysis of violence against children and more recently Diversity Dialogue: An Exercise in Inclusion. She has also worked closely with her husband, Nico van Oudenhoven, and their recent works together include, ‘Culturised Early Childhood Education’, (translated in Russian) and ‘Navigating Childish Times’.

She is the mother of two and lives fluidly within three worlds: The Netherlands, Canada and Trinidad and Tobago. She has her academic specializations in sociology, psychology, education, management and international development. Her alma mater includes the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad; National Institute of Rural Development (NIRD), Hyderabad, India; the Schulich School of Executive Business and York University, Toronto, Canada; and the Institute of Social Studies, The Hague (ISS) of Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Rona believes that the measure of worth of any entity, whether an individual, an organization, a society, or a nation, is reflected in how it treats those most vulnerable.

Rona started her new position as the Manager of Anti-Oppression Practice, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (AOPDEI) for the Durham Children’s Aid Society on December 10, 2018 and is proud to call herself a member of the CAS family.