Featuring the people behind CIWA’s governance: Meet Elmien Wingert, CIWA’s Board Chair.

Elmien joined CIWA Board as a director in 2017 with a motivation to help newcomers enhance their quality of life. She is a Chartered Professional Accountant and brings extensive experience in finance, strategic planning and leadership to the CIWA Board.

Elmien speaks English and Afrikaans. She grew up in South Africa and moved to Canada after University. During the first few years in Canada, she focused on integrating, transferring her credentials and finding employment in an accounting role. She found a job in Banff under supportive leaders who taught her not only accounting and tax, but also Canadian workplace etiquette.

Elmien recognizes that women tend to take on a key role to assist families with integration into a new society, and this inspires her to support organizations that focus on providing services for women. Through her engagement with the Board, Elmien supports CIWA’s strategic direction in providing equitable opportunities and services that are customized to immigrant women’s settlement and integration journey. She shares that CIWA provides many valuable services to newcomers, with language training being one of the most critical.

“When you can succinctly and clearly communicate ideas, it is much easier to integrate into a new society or culture.”
Elmien highly values volunteering. Volunteers are an integral part of the success of many great non-for-profit organizations. There are many opportunities for volunteering at CIWA, including youth mentors, interpreters, facilitators and tutors.
“Personally, I have gained just as much from volunteering as the time and effort required on my end.”

On her spare time, Elmien loves spending times outdoors to hike, bike and ski. She also enjoys travelling within Canada and to foreign countries.

Thank you, Elmien, for your commitment to help CIWA empower immigrant women and enrich Canadian society. To learn more about CIWA Board members, click here.