As we mark the 150th anniversary of confederation, The Philanthropist is profiling Canadians from across the non-profit sector and putting a face to 150 individuals who work or volunteer in Canada’s social sector.
Name: Carla Pindera
Current role in the sector: Director of Clinical Programs, Nine Circles Community Health Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Years working and/or volunteering in the non-profit sector: Thirty-one years working in health care, 14 years in my current role at Nine Circles.
What was your first job in the sector or a defining moment?
I have had so many defining moments in my career! I started my job in health care working as a nurse in Churchill, Manitoba. It was my time in this small, remote community that formulated my interest in community health, particularly related to community development, health promotion and disease prevention with Indigenous urban populations. I went on to complete my graduate studies in Community Health Sciences at the University of Manitoba where I concentrated on health and health care issues of marginalized populations. Through my studies, I developed a broad understanding of health policy issues of concern regarding disease prevention and health promotion, specifically in the areas of HIV, addictions, poverty, and gender inequality. The last 14 years I have had the privilege to work at Nine Circles Community Health Centre in Winnipeg. I have been allowed to utilize my nursing experiences in street health, public health, primary care and my education to create a structure and team that focuses on responsive, wrap-around health care services for clients living with and at-risk for HIV in Manitoba.
Describe your desk/workspace.
Organized chaos! I feel most comfortable with everything within arm’s reach. Despite my desk looking like a bomb went off on it, I know what pile contains what and can always find what I’m looking for!
What are you reading or following that has expanded your understanding of the non-profit sector?
I currently manage a team of 26 staff, and I am always reading up on best practices in management and leadership. My greatest success is the successes of this team. I am currently reading Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel Pink. I also started reading The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo but didn’t finish it and it can be found under one of my piles on my desk!
What do you think our sector needs to be thinking about?
The health care sector needs to be thinking about health equity and social justice. In this time of reduced budgets and increasing focus on efficiency in health care delivery, we cannot forget that there are large gaps between those experiencing the best and poorest health. Many of the gaps arise from unfair, unjust and modifiable social circumstances.
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