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The Voice

IABC Ottawa’s Premier Programming for Marketers, Communicators, and Creative Advertisers Everywhere

IABC Ottawa’s premier podcast for marketers, communicators, and creative advertisers. Join host Sherry Aske once a month for expert insights and practical tips from some of North America’s leading marketing professionals.

Sherry Aske is a digital storyteller, podcast host, and former CBC Ottawa producer and journalist. She's now working as a communications and social media advisor for the public service.

Apr 6, 2016

When the body of three-year-old Alan Kurdi washed up on a beach in September 2015, it sent the world into uproar about the tragic plight of Syrian refugees. Shortly afterwards, Canadians – and their newly elected government – responded by opening up their communities to accept 25,000 Syrian refugees. This presented both an opportunity for Canadians to lend support and a challenge for authorities in settling thousands of large and vulnerable families, many of whom didn’t speak English or French.


In Ottawa, Louisa Taylor recognized both need and opportunity. Within three weeks she went from conception to launch with a new organization, Refugee 613. But not without many growing pains.

In this episode, Louisa Taylor, Director of Refugee 613, discusses with host Tina Barton:

  • How to build a team or organization in real time to respond to a critical need
  • Essential communications infrastructure to put in place
  • How to recruit and manage volunteers successfully
  • Strategies for maximizing public awareness and engagement 
  • The question of an exit strategy

Connect with {Rufugee613} at and on Twitter.

This episode was produced by Tina Barton, and Ashlea McGrath of Thornley Fallis CommunicationsRate the show on iTunes!