Sexual Health Educator
Young enough to relate to children and teens, but experienced enough to understand the issues faced by parents, educators, health care professionals, Saleema Noon earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Family Sciences at UBC. She then researched the quality of sexual health education in B.C. high schools, earning her a Master of Arts degree in sexual health education in 1997, also from UBC. Shortly after graduating, legendary sexual health educator Meg Hickling asked Saleema to train with her as she looked toward retirement. Since then, Saleema has been teaching not only in the field of sexual health, but also in the areas of empowerment, assertiveness training, internet safety, healthy relationships, body image and consent. With a growing team of qualified and skilled educators, Saleema has loved providing comprehensive sexual health education to parents, children and teens across BC for over 20 years.
Respected by the media as a sexual health expert, Saleema has appeared as a regular guest on CTV News, Global News, CBC News, CBC Radio, CKNW Radio, Shaw TV, CityTV Breakfast Television, CTV Morning Live, and also appeared in CBC’s Passionate Eye documentary Secrets and CBC Doc Zone documentary Sext Up Kids. Saleema has been featured in Canadian Living, Chatelaine and Today’s Parent magazines along with several other national publications, and is the recipient of the Options for Sexual Health’s Educator of the Year Award. In 2011, Saleema also received the YWCA Vancouver’s Women of Distinction Connecting the Community Award and in 2016 was appointed to the Order of British Columbia. Her book for parents, Talk Sex Today, was released in September 2016.
Our senior educator, Brandy, has been a member of the Saleema Noon Sexual Health Educators team for more than fifteen years and involved in the field of sexual health education for over twenty five. While completing her BA in sociology and women’s studies at the University of Alberta, Brandy volunteered at the University of Alberta’s, and then the University of British Columbia’s, Sexual Assault Support Centres in peer counselling, public awareness and education. While completing her PhD at UBC, Brandy became an OPT Certified Sexual Health Educator (2006). Receiving her Ph.D. in sociology (specializing in sexuality) in 2009, Brandy has extensive experience teaching sexuality at the university level. She now shares her expertise in the elementary setting and loves teaching “Body Science” to children and parents in a way that is fun, comfortable and meaningful. When not in the classroom, Brandy is a yoga and paddle-holic. All this, AND she throws a mean fastball!
Cath earned her nursing degree in 1997, and went on to gain extensive community-based experience as a midwife and nurse in rural & remote western Australia. Her passion for family health then led her to community-based early parenting education. Today, Cath is not only an integral part of the Saleema Noon team, but she is also pursuing a Masters in psychology and counselling (MACP). She sees the intersection of sexual health and mental health as incredibly important work for the wellbeing of our kids today. That is, if we have honest conversations with our kids
about sexual health, their mental health will be better. This is very fulfilling work that Cath enjoys so much; sexual health education, psychoeducation and counselling. Whether it’s in the classroom with students or in her office with counselling clients, Cath brings her lived experience as a parent to three now-young-adult girls and is gifted at creating safe and inclusive spaces. Staying true to her “stay fit for mental health” philosophy, she’s a regular on the North Shore trails and mountains.
Julie received her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology in Alberta where she specialized in studying Toxic Masculinity. After travelling the world surfing and snowboarding, she found herself in Mexico teaching at an alternative school while also supporting and encouraging disenfranchised youth to try surfing and stand up paddle boarding. Her work with youth in Mexico inspired her to return to her studies at UBC and to pursue a Master’s degree in Gender and Education as well as her teaching degree. Passionate about empowering folks from diverse communities, Julie finds dividing her time between public school classrooms and facilitating sexual health workshops throughout the Lower Mainland to be the perfect balance.
When she is not teaching or studying she can be found on a mountain bike, on her snowboard, or sleeping in a tent… anything to get into nature in and around the Pacific Northwest.
Sarah completed a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology at UBC and spent several years volunteering with survivors of physical and sexual violence. This led her to pursue work supporting sexual health, well-being, and empowerment. In 2017 she completed the Sexual Health Educator Certification through Options for Sexual Health, where she also spent several years as a volunteer.
More recently, Sarah completed a Master of Public Health at SFU focusing on population health and health equity. As an educator on the team, Sarah’s warm and lighthearted approach helps to cultivate comfort and curiosity in students. In addition to her work as an educator, Sarah works in health research.
For the past thirteen years, Sarah Maitland has worked to empower kids and youth. In 2011, she co-created a literary centre for under-resourced kids called the Writers’ Exchange, running fun writing programs in schools across East Vancouver. It was through these programs that she first connected with kids and parents who were seeking help with sexual health. Inspired to support these families, Sarah completed Options for Sexual Health’s SHEC program and is now a Certified Sexual Health Educator. She has been on Saleema’s team since 2019. Sarah facilitates workshops on sexual health, assertiveness, and violence-prevention for kids, teens, and the adults who support them.
Operations Manager & Marketing Specialist
Although not a sexual educator, Steph is an integral part of the team. Steph completed her undergraduate from Simon Fraser University, majoring in Criminology and minoring in Gender Studies. After a long stint in hospitality and luxury travel, Steph brings in her organizational skills, big picture ideas and all around well roundedness to the team. She is the first person you will hear from if you need any support on our learning platform, have questions, or are inquiring on school bookings. She is a Jill of all trades and enjoys playing co-captain as she leads everything from operations to downloadable resources to video editing and to our website – she does it all!
When she has a spare minute, Steph enjoys slurpin’ down a good bowl of noodles for her YouTube channel and destigmatizing the sex industry on her podcast, Stripped by SIA.
Sexual Health Educator, Social Content Manager
After completing her Bachelor of Kinesiology in Leadership at the University of Calgary in 2014, Carlie began a health promotion career in central Alberta. She worked with multiple school districts to support their comprehensive school health initiatives and to secure large scale grant funding. Carlie later moved into Reproductive Health with Alberta Health Services where she trained as a content expert in sexual health. She contributed to national scale sexual health information resources, supported research and facilitated sexual health education in classrooms, corrections facilities, rehabilitation centres and more. After achieving her Graduate Certificate in Sexual Health from the University of Alberta in 2020, Carlie relocated to Vancouver to develop sexual health resources, mentor students and support sexual health research at UBC. She joined our team to curate social media content but it didn’t take long for Saleema to convince her to get back in the classroom to teach both our workshops in elementary schools and her own curriculum in middle and high schools under The Whole SHEbang: Sexual Health Education. When Carlie isn’t teaching you can find her reading a weird book with her cats close by, skiing on the north shore, or playing outside somewhere with her pals.
Nicky earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the Faculty of Land and Food Systems at UBC with a special interest in bees and education. Following several years of working with youth in outdoor and community settings, her passion for cultivating relationships with young people led her to pursue a teaching degree followed by a Master’s degree in Counselling. She now enjoys being an elementary school counsellor in North Vancouver.
In her role supporting youth and their mental health in the school setting, Nicky identified the need for crucial topics like learning about bodies, navigating social relationships, understanding the online world and exploring identities to be addressed more meaningfully. So, she pursued a Sexual Health Educator Certification with Options for Sexual Health. Nicky is excited at the opportunity to tackle all of these social emotional issues and more in her Body Science workshops with the Saleema Noon team. Outside of the classroom Nicky enjoys sharing meals with friends and family, riding her bicycle around town and disappearing in a good book.
After completing her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at UBC in 2014, Dee worked as a Youth Care Counsellor at an alternate high school in Vancouver for 6 years. While working with youth, Dee was inspired to become a Certified Sexual Health Educator through Options for Sexual Health in 2017 and, soon after, started her consulting business “Sexual Health with Dee”. Since then, she has both created curriculum for school districts and delivered comprehensive sexual health education to Vancouver-based schools and community groups including Real Talk, a non-profit organization that helps folks with cognitive disabilities start conversations around dating, sex, relationships and love. Dee is excited to bring her experience and skill to the Saleema Noon team. When the school day is finished you’ll find her teaching Jazzercise and hanging with her happy little toddler.
Language: English or Mandarin
Tara Moon completed her degree in Human Relations with a minor in Chinese Language. Through her studies, she gained a passion for empowering others through knowledge and confidence. In 2018 she graduated from the Sexual Health Educator Certification Program with Options for Sexual Health, and since then has been facilitating sexual health workshops for various community groups.
Tara has worked with kids in a variety of contexts, beginning in Quebec, where she worked as a language assistant with elementary and high school students. In Vancouver she has also worked with grades K-7 at Science World, facilitating science workshops in the inner-city schools, leading summer camps, and performing science shows around BC. She is excited to bring her natural connection with kids to the Body Science classroom.
In her spare time, Tara can be found experimenting with cooking techniques or on the hunt for the hottest new board game.