Manitoba FASD Coalition is a province-wide collaborative network of individuals and organizations from across all sectors committed to supporting prevention, education, research, and intervention activities in the area of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. We share ideas, information, resources, challenges and successes. Please see the MFCI Organizational Chart and Key
Board of Directors
Joanne Wyman – President, Manitoba FASD Coalition: Joanne has been a Regional FASD Diagnostic Coordinator since 2009 and works out of The Pas Manitoba. Joanne has been a dedicated member of the Manitoba FASD Coalition since 1999.
Debbie Cielen – Treasurer, Manitoba FASD Coalition: Debbie is the Elder/Director of Indigenous Spiritual Care Service at Life’s Journey Inc. located in Winnipeg. Debbie has been involved in the social service delivery field for over thirty years in addictions treatment, coordinated and supervised the first indigenous Insight Mentoring program in Manitoba and Indian Residential Schools Program. Debbie has been intricate to cultural ceremonies and practices for over 30 years. Debbie is a sundancer, pipe carrier, sweatlodge and full moon ceremonial conductor.
Andrea Auch is a counsellor at the FASD Family Support, Education and Counselling Program of New Directions. She has also worked in the fields of mental health and school therapy. Andrea has a degree in Occupational Therapy and is registered with the College of Occupational Therapists of Manitoba. She has a continued interest and passion in working to support children with FASD and their families.
Dr. Marleny Bonnycastle is an Associate Professor at the University of Manitoba, Faculty of Social Work. She has worked at the Forth Garry campus for two years, the Inner-City Social Work Program for three years, and Northern Social Work Program for five years. Her continuing program of research centers on Community-Based Participatory Research, including community engagement, development, and mobilizing. She has experience in the use of qualitative and participatory methods and has successfully completed many projects from study conceptualization to knowledge dissemination activities. Most of her projects have been collaborative and in partnership with other researchers and community organizations in the area of housing and homelessness, women and other marginalized groups. Currently, Dr. Bonnycastle is a co-researcher of the ‘Looking After Each Other: A dignity promotion research project for FASD’ and the ‘Mino Bimaadiziwin partnership,’ which is building capacity and houses in Northern Manitoba through partnerships for community-led post-secondary education in Garden Hill and Wasagamack First Nations. She is also a Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives Manitoba Research Associate.
Twyla Gilroy is an FASD Diagnostic Coordinator with the Manitoba FASD Network. She is employed by Prairie Mountain Health, providing service to the Dauphin/Swan River area (August 2016-present). Prior to this, she was involved in FASD prevention as the InSight Mentor Coordinator in Dauphin (2010-2016), and worked in the addictions field (2001-2010). Twyla holds a Bachelor of Social Work degree from the University of Manitoba and is a registered member of the Manitoba College of Social Workers. Twyla has been an active member of the Manitoba FASD Coalition (and Manitoba Coalition on Alcohol and Pregnancy) since 2010. She served on the newsletter committee for several years. Twyla has a passion for supporting families and reducing the stigma related to FASD.
Helene Estrada is the Regional Peer Support & Training Officer for Success Through Advocacy and Role-Modelling, known as The STAR Program, an FASD Prevention Program in First Nations communities. Prior to this, she started her career in social services, mental health and addictions as a frontline worker who supported individuals in community, residential, corrections and child welfare settings. Helene holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Manitoba, and received formal training from Manitoba Corrections and Justice Institute of British Columbia on Juvenile Corrections and Youth Probation. Helene values learning from experiential people – most especially the individuals she continues to support and advocate for.
Chris Fillion was diagnosed with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder at the age of 9. He grew up in the Child and Family Services system until he became an adult. He has some experience in the justice system, and currently is forming a not-for-profit organization called WEAREYOU Services for at-risk individuals with a disability. WEARE YOU exists to assist individuals who may become involved with the law. Chris is also an advocate within the FASD community worldwide. His main goal in life is to help others and to provide education on FASD to help break the stigma against people who have been diagnosed with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder.
Cindy Helstrom has been an active member of The Pas and Area FASD Committee since 2010. Currently employed by The Northern Health Authority since 2008. During this time, Cindy has been supporting women who may be at risk for substance use during pregnancy. She looks forward to gaining more insight to better help, support and reduce the stigma related to FASD.
Heather Powell is the current chair for Flin Flon/ Creighton FASD Committee and is employed by the Northern Health Authority in the InSight program as a Mentor since 2015. Heather is working to educate and build empathy, compassion and inclusion for those living with FASD in her community as well as their caregivers.