Togo, Peru, Cameroon
1988-1990 - 1991-1992, 1996-1998, 2013
Huberte Gautreau loves adventure. In her 20s, she travelled to South America to learn Spanish, but ended up staying to work in Peru following an earthquake. That first trip sparked a love of international work.
“Working abroad is priceless. Experiencing other cultures allows us to examine our own values,” she says. “We go there to help, but they’re the ones who end up helping us.”
Her first Cuso International assignment was in Togo where she helped build water pumps. She travelled to Peru in the mid-90s to work with a local agency on a uterine cancer prevention project.
“If you want to work in the field, you need to work with organizations like Cuso International,” says Mme Gautreau.
Her international work ignited a passion for understanding the root causes of issues. It’s what ultimately led her to take up the fight for pay equity in her home province of New Brunswick to address women’s poverty issues in that province.
The former president of the New Brunswick Coalition for Pay Equity, Gautreau has received the New Brunswick Human Rights Award as well as the Governor General’s Award in commemoration of the Persons Case. She received the YMCA Peace Medallion in 1995. In 2015, Mme Gautreau’s work in women’s rights was part of an exhibit at the Canadian Human Rights Museum.