Transformations 2019: Stories of Partnership, Resilience and Positive Change

About Transformations

Since 2015, OCIC’s Transformations photojournalism initiative has profiled remarkable stories of individuals and organizations working in Peru, Nepal, Tanzania, Eel Ground First Nation, Chippewas of Nawash First Nation (Neyaashiinigmiing), and Garden Hill First Nation, in partnership and solidarity with members of our Council in Ontario, Canada. Transformations is presented on a virtual platform and as exhibits in community spaces as opportunities to make visible and to learn from the hundreds of thousands of meaningful efforts underway for people and the planet, globally.

Seen together, Transformations stories speak to the power of authentic partnerships — partnerships that work across geographies, cultures and diverse identities and realities to provide comprehensive cleft and palate care for children, to empower working children and youth to understand their rights, and to accompany women’s rights organizations in their work to transform their communities through long-term socio-economic development programs. Transformations stories also shine light on human capacity for resilience and positive change, sharing approaches and innovations in conservation agriculture, climate change mitigation and gender equality, and Indigenous communities efforts to advance community health, and to support increased food security and food sovereignty.

Transformations 2019 features people in Ontario that make transformative change possible and inspire Canadians to join the movement for the people, planet and prosperity.

OCIC’s Transformations 2019 exhibit comes closer to home, profiling over 60 individuals that work intentionally to build bridges between communities like Sarnia and Hawkesbury, Ontario, with those in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and Dakar, Senegal. These everyday actors of social, economic and environmental change are connected to diverse civil society organizations and institutions across our province that are contributing to universal sustainable development. Their lived experiences and reflections on feminist and transformative change, community-led action, decolonization and the importance of localizing global issues are a part of collective efforts to “leave no one behind,” articulated since 2015 through the UN Sustainable Development Goals and Agenda 2030.

View the Online Exhibit

2019 Exhibition Schedule

Follow the footsteps of our award-winning photojournalism project to explore the immense strength and possibilities in global partnership and community-led actions towards a feminist, decolonized, and more inclusive future. The Transformations 2019 exhibits will launch in Sarnia, Ontario on February 1, 2019, followed by a series of exhibits in Ottawa, Greater Toronto Area, and Peterborough throughout February.

Upcoming Exhibits

  • April 1-30 – Centre for Social Innovation Spadina 4th Floor, Toronto
  • April 12-14 – Buy Good Feel Good Expo at Enercare Centre, Toronto

Past Exhibits

2019 Partners


Partnership Approach

This narrative is rooted in the Istanbul Principles for CSO Development Effectiveness, a set of mutually shared values guiding the development work of civil society organizations (CSOs) worldwide. These include to:

  • respect and promote human rights and social justice;
  • embody gender equality and equity while promoting women and girls’ rights;
  • on people’s empowerment, democratic ownership and participation;
  • promote environmental sustainability;
  • practice transparency and accountability;
  • pursue equitable partnerships and solidarity;
  • create and share knowledge and commit to mutual learning; and
  • commit to realizing positive sustainable change.

OCIC seeks to practice the Istanbul Principles in our approach to partnerships, and to use these Principles as the overarching framework for the stories that we share. In creating this collaborative program, we work closely with members and their international partners in planning and undertaking the visit and the resulting exhibit. As a way to implement principles into practice, OCIC and our partners jointly develop a Partnership Agreement so that our mutual efforts are of significant value for all.

Collaboration with Praxis Pictures

These stories were documented by OCIC and photojournalist Allan Lissner, Praxis Pictures.

Allan Lissner is an award-winning Danish-Filipino-Canadian photographer and filmmaker who was raised in in Ethiopia, Liberia, USA, Nepal, Lithuania, Denmark, Jordan, Bangladesh and Canada. For the past ten years Allan has been working on collaborative multimedia projects with indigenous communities, documenting their efforts to protect their territories and preserve their ways of life. This ongoing work includes projects with over a dozen communities in the Philippines, Guatemala, Tanzania, Papua New Guinea, Australia, Chile and Canada.

Learn more about Praxis Pictures, here.


Get in touch with Eugenia Ochoa, OCIC Public Engagement Coordinator at

View Previous Transformations Exhibits

These stories were documented by OCIC and Allan Lissner, Praxis Pictures, with the financial support from the Government of Canada through Global Affairs Canada. We extend our deepest gratitude to our organizational partners and to the many individuals and communities that shared their experiences, and their lives.