A Markham paralegal and a community leader have each received a 2022-23 Attorney General’s Victim Services Award of Distinction in recognition of their work supporting people who’ve been victimized due to crime.
Bonny Kaman Li, executive director of the East Asian and Pacific Legal Clinic in Markham, “is fiercely dedicated to supporting and empowering members of the community in need,” the Attorney General reports.
The Award of Distinction also recognizes the dedication and achievements of individuals and organizations working to raise awareness of victims’ issues in Ontario. In 2015, Li launched a public legal education, support and advice program to offer workshops for members of marginalized communities. She also supports victims of crime one on one to help them find resources, fill out paperwork and understand the options available to them when making a legal decision.
Five years later, Li created Skills2Success to provide victims of crime, women with low income and those who’ve experienced violence with career planning and job training assistance. In less than three years, she has helped almost 200 individuals. Since 2021, she has been advocating for immigrants and refugees before the Immigration and Refugee Board while helping families cope with the impact of violence and settle more easily into Canadian communities.
Fellow award recipient Carol Wildgoose is a director of the Human Anti-Trafficking Response Team (HART). The York Region organization funds research conducted by Women’s College Hospital on behalf of survivors of sex trafficking.
Wildgoose established a regional committee that includes leaders from York Regional Police, Victim Services York Region, 360ºkids and the Women’s Support Network to spearhead the construction of a safe house and service hub for survivors in the region. She has also helped fundraise for local hospice services as well as Markham Stouffville Hospital Foundation. She’s a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.