The Society for Canadian Women in Science and Technology

The Society for Canadian Women in Science and Technology

March 07, 2008 16:25 ET

The Society for Canadian Women in Science and Technology: Bringing British Columbians Together to Celebrate Women's Health: An Evening With Internationally Known Health Activist Judy Norsigian

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - March 7, 2008) - On Thursday April 24th health activist Judy Norsigian will be in Vancouver to talk about the global reach of the now classic book on women's health Our Bodies, Ourselves. The Director of the Institute of Gender and Health (Canadian Institutes of Health Research), Dr. Joy Johnson, will open the evening with a discussion of the advances in women's health research in Canada. This free event is open to anyone with an interest in women's health. Guests can attend in person or over the internet via live webcast.

Norsigian is a co-founder and the Executive Director of Our Bodies Ourselves (OBOS), the organization that for almost 40 years has provided indispensable, scientific information on women's health and sexuality. During her evening talk, Norsigian will describe the OBOS "Global Translations and Adaptations" program through images and stories. "Often a direct translation of Our Bodies, Ourselves is not culturally appropriate," says Norsigian. "We seek to assist women's groups around the world as they develop cultural adaptations of, or other publications inspired by, Our Bodies, Ourselves for outreach and advocacy in their community, country or region."

"There are lessons from the OBOS project that are important for British Columbia researchers," says Dr. Elana Brief, Research Director of the Women's Health Research Network, one of the event's sponsors. "Ultimately, the Global Translations and Adaptations Program answers the question: How do we share knowledge? Health researchers are increasingly asked to be accountable and to share their findings. Judy's talk will inspire us."

Dr. Jerilynn Prior, the Director of the Centre for Menstrual Cycle and Ovulation Research (CeMCOR), also sponsoring the event, has been a women's health researcher for most of her career. Having graduated from medical school in 1969, Prior states, "Women today have more access to knowledge about their health than ever before. It is our responsibility as researchers to honour women's voices and experiences, and provide good information so that women can make informed health decisions."

The event is also sponsored by the Society for Canadian Women in Science and Technology (SCWIST). One of SCWIST's founding members, Dr. Abby Schwarz, was also one of the co-authors of the original Our Bodies, Ourselves in 1969/70. "It is gratifying to see how far women's health has come since we sat around a kitchen table in Boston almost 40 years ago," remarks Schwarz. "This event will continue keeping the tradition of knowledge sharing alive and fresh."

The event is free, space is limited. Internet participation is encouraged. To RSVP, please go to

Our Bodies, Ourselves

Founded in 1969 after a group of Boston-based women met at a local women's conference, the Boston Women's Health Book Collective (also known as Our Bodies Ourselves) wrote the first edition of the landmark book, Our Bodies, Ourselves, in 1970. The eighth edition (2005) as well as other publications and online resources by this nonprofit organization continue the tradition of providing accurate noncommercial information about women's health and sexuality. For more information, visit.

Our Bodies, Ourselves Global Translations and Adaptations Program

Over the years Our Bodies Ourselves (OBOS) has been involved in the development of 29 editions in diverse languages worldwide, all of which have made evidence-based information on women's health and rights available in communities where such information is scarce or altogether lacking. Most recently, women's groups in East Africa, Albania, Russia, South Korea, and Tibet have produced new publications in book and other formats.

The Women's Health Research Network

The goal of the Women's Health Research Network ( is to increase research activity focused on girls' and women's health in British Columbia and to influence research, policy, and practice by enabling all health researchers in British Columbia to apply a sex, gender, and diversity lens to their work. The WHRN is one of eight Health of Population Networks funded by the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research.

The Centre for Menstrual Cycle and Ovulation Research

The Centre for Menstrual Cycle and Ovulation Research (CeMCOR) is focused on reframing women's health within a science-based, woman-centred context. It is doing pivotal research on ovulation, women's experiences across the menstrual cycle, the scientific effects of extended or "cycle-stopping" hormonal contraception, the inherited connection of PCOS (Anovulatory Androgen Excess) and a congenital eye disease known as aniridia, and the effects of progesterone on hot flushes and heart health. As new health knowledge is created it becomes available in plain language on an attractive, accessible and widely-read website: CeMCOR has an endowment fund through the University of British Columbia to ensure the future of this innovative research for women.

The Society for Canadian Women in Science and Technology

The Society for Canadian Women in Science and Technology ( promotes, encourages, and empowers women working in science and technology. SCWIST coordinates and develops events for girls, young female undergraduates, graduates, and post-docs, women who are established in their careers, and scientific women who have immigrated to Canada. SCWIST offers student and professional membership, and welcomes donations from people who want to make a difference for women in science.

OBOS Executive Director Judy Norsigian is available for interviews.

Event Details

Date: April 24, 2008

Time: 6:30pm-10:00pm

Place: Paetzold Auditorium, Vancouver General Hospital

Cost: Free, but space is limited (live webcast also available)

RSVP: / 604 707 6378

Those who cannot attend in person can watch and ask questions via live webcast.

For registration and details, visit

Speakers include:

- Judy Norsigian, Executive Director and co-founder of Our Bodies Ourselves

- Dr. Joy Johnson, Director of the Institute for Gender and Health, Canadian Institutes of Health Research

- Dr. Lorraine Greaves, Director of the BC Center of Excellence in Women's Health

- Dr. Jerilynn Prior, Founder and Scientific Director of the Centre for Menstrual Cycle and Ovulation Research

To view the Backgrounder accompanying this release please click on the following link:

Distribution courtesy of Marketwire.

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