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Virtual speaker series to start soon for Surrey residents to learn about various topics

Each event will feature a qualified speaker
Surrey’s Speaker Series will feature virtual talks on a variety of topics. (City of Surrey photo)

A series of events in Surrey will showcase speakers leading discussions on a wide-range of topics including diversity, accessibility and anti-racism.

Learn Over Lunch is a virtual speaker series accessed via Microsoft Teams throughout the months of September and October. Each session will feature a different speaker who will engage with the audience during the one-hour session, each one from noon to 1 p.m.

The first one is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 14, led by Alex DeForge, who will be speaking on how “gender identity and sexuality orientation appear in public settings and some of the ways individuals can help accept and celebrate 2SLGBTQIA+ people,” reads the City of Surrey website.

The goal of this talk is to celebrate marginalized identities.

Vision loss is the topic for the second in the speaker-series on Wednesday, Sept. 28, with an orientation and mobility specialist with Vision Loss Rehabilitation Canada leading the afternoon session.

Samantha Brown, the specialist, “will be speaking on how public spaces can be more inclusive to people with vision loss.”

“This will include discussing proper etiquette when assisting people with vision loss; environmental safety concerns; and how to make the overall experience of your environment more enjoyable and inclusive for everyone.”

An experienced speaker, with 25 years under her belt, will be speaking for the Wednesday, Oct. 5 event.

Called ‘Resiliency on the Roller Coaster,’ Tracy Schmitt will discuss barriers for people with disabilities and how to work with them to make a more accessible future.

“As a four-way amputee, Tracy has climbed mountains in Nepal without her prosthetic legs, captained 110-foot tall ships in the Eastern Atlantic and won a bronze medal as a Parasport athlete in downhill skiing,” states the City of Surrey website.

“She recently campaigned for a spot in the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics as an aspiring Paralympian in sailing.”

All of the events are free, but registration is required. To do so, call 604-592-6956 or email