Deborah is a social worker with a rich history of working with marginalized and vulnerable people and community development. She came to NFLA in 2012 with an abiding belief in resilience and healing. As such, she works to cultivate equity, to live a balanced life that is deeply connected to community, and to apply ethical values to actualize meaningful social change.
Deborah Hollins is the Executive Director of Nanaimo Family Life Association.
Mia’s background is in Nursing/Psychiatric Nursing. She is a Registered Professional Counsellor. She grew up in Sweden and came to Canada when she was 23 years old. She has been involved at NFLA for 10 years and has coordinated the counselling program for almost 8 years. Her passions are personal growth, spirituality, meditation, nature, books and her awesome children.
Mia is Programs Coordinator for the Volunteer Counselling Program and Senior Peer Counselling Program at Nanaimo Family Life Association.
Donna graduated from VIU with her Associate in Commerce specializing in Accounting. She has an extensive background in both “for profit” and “not for profit” bookkeeping and financial management. Donna was born in Montreal and moved west until she found her home in Nanaimo. Loving the ocean, forests and the people, Nanaimo is the place for her.
Donna is the Manager of Financial Services at Nanaimo Family Life Association.
Krista Whittaker grew up in beautiful Nanaimo, B.C. She was a sport enthusiast and liked to enjoy life by hanging out with family and friends. She ventured off the island to complete her Bachelors in Kinesiology degree from UBC, where she also participated on the Women’s Varsity Soccer Team. Following her degree, Krista returned home to pursue her work as a kinesiologist. Within her work as a kinesiologist, Krista has a passion for enabling the senior population to live healthier lives. This passion stemmed from the realization of how fortunate she was to have four grandparents alive in her youth years. She was able to create lasting memories with them and learn many valuable life lessons from them. However, Krista’s passion for assisting the elderly to live healthier, happier lives has grown much further than her work as a kinesiologist. This is when Krista applied for the Client Service Specialist Position at NFLA’s Better at Home Program, where she now resides. Previously, Krista was involved with the Better at Home Program, as a volunteer then contractor. In the coming years, Krista hopes to continue following her passion, growing the ways in which to assist elders to live healthier, happier and more independent lives.
Krista is the Client Service Specialist for the Better at Home program with Nanaimo Family Life Association.
Elizabeth started working for Nanaimo Family Life Association as a youth and family counsellor for “our camp 78”, a day camp for vulnerable and at-risk youth. She work in this capacity for 4 years, then went to Victoria to continue her career with youth.
Elizabeth has work in the counselling field for most of her adult life and is a certified herbalist, birth doula, and has a post-graduate diploma in process-orientated psychology. Elizabeth returned to Nanaimo in 2012 and came back to NFLA to work in the Art Works program with youth. Elizabeth has had many interesting life experiences, including sailing to the South Pacific. She loves being a part of Nanaimo Family Life Association.
Elizabeth is the Coordinator of the Better at Home Program on Gabriola Island.
250 – 764-3331 (726)
Sacia brings a diverse array of experience to her role from time spent in politics, nonprofit, hospitality, and tourism. She is passionate about local food and participatory democracy. Sacia holds a BA in Politics and Philosophy from Vancouver Island University. Though originally hailing from Prince Edward Island, she has called Snuneymuxw/Nanaimo home for eight years. In her spare time, Sacia enjoys gardening, embroidery, yoga, kayaking, and making good food with friends.
Sacia Burton is the TAPS Program Coordinator for Nanaimo Family Life Association.
Originally from Mi’kmaq territory on the East Coast of Canada, Ajay has lived on Vancouver Island and called unceded Snuneymuxw First Nations territory their home for the past 6 years. Ajay has a background in social work, activism, advocacy, education and community development and has worked as a practitioner for the past 8 years, but has worked in mental health, addictions and with marginalized populations for over 17 years. As a member of the LBGTQ2S+ community, Ajay identifies as Gender Queer/ Non-Binary and uses They/Them/Their pronouns. Ajay is an active member of their community, and founded the Nanaimo based groups Generation Q (an LGBTQ2S+ youth group) and co founded Gender Journeys a support group for Transgender and Gender Variant adults under the umbrella of Nanaimo Family Life Programs for the past 3 years. Ajay practices from a strength based, trauma informed, anti-oppressive lens, and seeks to utilize holistic and culturally competent teachings to empower their clients through resiliency, collaboration, and compassion.
Ajay Booth is the Gender Journeys Outreach and Facilitator for Nanaimo Family Life Association.
Kirsten first got involved with the Nanaimo Family Life Association through our Volunteer Counselling Program in 2016. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Global Studies from Vancouver Island University where she developed a profound passion for inclusive community development and social advocacy through her involvement with a variety of academic decision-making structures and on-campus organizations. This includes serving as Student Representative on the VIU Board of Governors and VIU Senate, Chairperson for the VIU Students’ Union Local 61 and WUSC Student Refugee Program Resettlement Volunteer. Kirsten has lived in Nanaimo for most of her life and believes that this city has the greatest potential to be a leader for inclusive and sustainable community development in the province.
Kirsten is the Seniors Housing Navigator for NFLA’s Senior Housing Information and Navigation Ease Program.
Hannah Smith joined Nanaimo Family Life Association in July 2020 after receiving her Applied Business Technology certificate from Vancouver Island University. Along with her recent technical training, she hopes to bring enthusiasm and passion to her work for NFLA. Find her at the front desk, where she’s ready to give you a smile and assist you in accessing the organization’s wonderful list of resources and opportunities. In her spare time, she can be found swimming in the ocean with her dog or creating handmade jewelry.
Hannah is the Administrative Assistant for NFLA.