2005-2008 Cuso Board Member
Without originally knowing the Gandhi saying, when Marian White was younger, she deliberately chose to approach her life this way: “Live simply so that others may simply live.”
Living simply, without many possessions, has enabled this Prince Edward Islander to travel and experience life in many communities and on many continents. Her first placement with CUSO was in Nigeria from 1977 to 79. Prior to this, Marian hadn’t been involved in human rights or advocacy work. “When I returned from Nigeria, I became politicized,” reflects Marian. “I realized that so many issues of the Global South originated in the decisions the Global North made. There was an imbalance and an injustice.”
On returning to Canada, Marian was part of a national network of activists that brought South African theatre and music groups as well as South African exiles to communities across the country and was involved in Central and South American solidarity movements.
Marian has worked as an ESL instructor for refugees, particularly during the Vietnamese refugee crisis and held positions with Oxfam in Halifax and with Cuso International in PEI. She has been involved in campaigns to increase the representation of marginalized groups in positions of power and increasing the number of young women in politics. She is also active with the Island Peace Committee and the Council of Canadians. Marian was awarded a Development Education Award from CIDA in 1993 to undertake research in El Salvador and Guatemala and received the Atlantic Council for International Cooperation’s Global Citizenship Award in 2011. Marian recently returned from another Cuso International placement in Guyana.