Christine Helferty has been a strong leader on her campus at Queen’s University, and we are so thrilled to welcome her to the team this as our 2015 Summer Intern in Toronto! Christine will be helping us this summer with pro-life activism, planning campus campaigns for the fall, and much more. We find her so inspiring – we know you will too!
1) How did you get involved in pro-life campus activism?
Pro-life campus activism found me before I stepped foot in a university classroom! During my first year at Queen’s my older sister was the president of the pro-life club on campus, which meant that I was helping her recruit new students for the club before my classes even started. My parents and siblings fostered in me an appreciation for the beauty and sanctity of human life from a young age. I have known since elementary school that I want to dedicate my life to ending the injustice of abortion. University life has given me a million opportunities to embrace this mission.
2) How did you get to know NCLN?
My first encounter with NCLN was during my first year of university when two of the staff members came to Queen’s University to assist our club with a pro-life event. Following this I attended NCLN’s annual symposium in my second year of university. From this time I have been in contact with various NCLN staff members and have been impressed and grateful for their encouraging words, sincere care, and motivational challenges to succeed on campus as a pro-life student.
3) Why did you apply for the NCLN internship this summer?
I applied for NCLN’s internship because I believe in the extraordinary value of this organization, and I want to contribute to the mission of spreading the pro-life truth one student at a time, one seed at a time.
4) How do you spend your weekends and free time?
In my spare time I love to sing, play the piano, walk through beautiful trails, read, play volleyball, and spend time in the company of friends and family. My latest discovery has been swing dancing, which I have sincerely enjoyed and hope to continue to improve at!
5) Who inspires you?
So many people inspire me, and the list only gets longer each day! I certainly am inspired by my parents who have laid down their lives for their children every day, the great martyrs throughout history who sacrificed their very lives for a greater good, and the people I encounter in my every day life who fearlessly give all they are for the good of others.
This post was written for University of Toronto Students for Life by
Blaise Alleyne. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.
In August, I helped the National Campus Life Network launch the campus blogs section of their new website. I’ve been meaning to write about this for a while, and many pro-life students already know about it. These past couple weeks, with the arrests at Carleton, it’s been great to see it serve as a way for pro-life students to band together across campuses.
A feed aggregator is a software application that pulls in syndicated content from a variety of sources and displays it in a single convenient location. You can install a feed reader on your own computer to read content from all sorts of different blogs and websites in one place (an “inbox for the web”), but in this case, we used a web-based feed aggregator to display content from all of the Canadian campus blogs on the NCLN website.
We started off with six blogs—Brock, Alberta, Queen’s, Ottawa, Victoria and Toronto (that’s us!)—but we’ve already see two more campus pro-life blogs appear in the last few weeks—Calgary and Carlton.
The campus blogs aggregator has been a great hub of information with recent events at Carleton, with a preview of GAP from Calgary Pro-Life, our posts appearing alongside uOttawa Students for Life’s show of support, more support from Queen’s Alive, Brock University’s perspective on freedom of expression, and of course posts from Carleton Lifeline itself. I decided to caption some of the photos (which I believe were taken by Ania Biernacka of the University of Alberta on behalf of the CCBR), and Brock Students for Life showed that the students were in good company, by comparing photos of those arrests to the arrests of civil rights activists for “protesting without a permit” in 1963.
And beyond Carleton, there are just some great posts coming from campus blogs, whether it’s UVic’s recap of clubs day conversations, uOttawa spreading the word about 40 Days for Life or finding encouragement from a fortune cookie, Calgary Pro-Life sharing news of their ongoing battles with the university administration, or our own Danny Ricci spreading news from a UTSFL club member about an information series for expectant mothers provided by the U of T Family Care office, or our own Gianna Marks highlighting a remarkable article from the NY Times who refused prenatal testing to screen for Down Syndrome.
I am so impressed by pro-life students from campuses across the country, and we’re only getting started. I’m working with NCLN a bit to help get other clubs online and blogging (more on that later), and I hope that the campus blogs aggregator helps to strengthen the community ties between groups across the country, and challenge us all to keep sharing information, supporting each other and ultimately working to build a culture of life together in our own communities.
Together, in our own communities—that’s what’s so cool about this project to me.
Read the comments at the University of Toronto Students for Life website.