Board Of Directors
We started off as a group of young volunteers who wanted to provide better health care services to seniors in the Punjabi/Sikh community. Over time, we identified a significant gap in services for our infirm and elderly. We then were able to connect with like-minded individuals who shared a common vision and conducted extensive community and stakeholder consultations. This led to the creation of our organization.
Our organization’s Board consists of four professional, dedicated and hardworking individuals of Punjabi/Sikh background who work in the medical, nursing and management fields.
Dr. Harbir Singh Gill, President and Chair of the Board
Harbir Singh Gill practices family and addiction medicine in Calgary. He works in both hospital and community settings, serving in clinical and leadership roles.
Harbir was born and raised in Calgary and attended the University of Calgary attaining his Bachelor of Science (Honors) in biochemistry. He went on to complete medical school at the University of Alberta. He returned to Calgary to complete his residency in family medicine, where he received the Outstanding Family Medicine Resident Award. His inpatient and outpatient practice focus is in treating marginalized populations with a particular emphasis on the elderly, mentally ill and addicted. Dr. Gill is a passionate advocate for the marginalized at both an individual and system level. He is a leader in the community: he served as Site Chief of the Peter Lougheed Centre Hospitalist Program which is this Hospital’s largest inpatient service; he also serves on the board of Mosaic PCN. This combination of work and volunteer experience has allowed him to clearly see the gaps in services provided to Punjabi-speaking seniors, in particular those that speak no English at all. His experiences position him well to help bring about the changes needed to improve the situation and close these gaps.
Dr. Gill believes passionately in the concept of Seva (selfless service and attention to the welfare of others). He feels it is the sacred duty of the younger members of the community to care for and tend to the needs of the old and infirm and to minister to them with love, respect and dignity. The example of Guru Amar Das Ji serves as his guide. By becoming a Guru at 73 and serving until 95, he showed that elders are capable of tremendous achievements in their later years, often times more than earlier in their life. The infirm can be mentors; the old can teach the new and the wisdom gained over a lifetime can be passed on. Dr. Gill feels the beautiful gifts our elderly and frail have to offer can be revealed if we nurture them with love. This nursing home, with Guru Amar Das Ji at its centre, will serve as the conduit to make this a reality.
On a personal level, Harbir enjoys writing, reading, Aikido training and Kundalini Yoga, which he both teaches and practices. He also volunteers with a variety of community organizations.
Dr. Harjot Kaur Singh, Treasurer
Dr. Harjot Kaur Singh is a family physician who actively practices a combination of allopathic and complementary medicine in Calgary, AB, Canada. She completed her education at the University of Calgary, completing a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology and a medical degree. She views the practice of medicine with a holistic approach involving not only mind and body but also addressing the spirit.
Harjot Kaur volunteers her free time to share her knowledge on Sikhism. She has been a guest lecturer on Sikhism at various public and private schools, on CBC radio, and to the Girl Guides of Canada. She was a keynote speaker for the Calgary Public Board of Education’s symposium for The Elimination of Racial Discrimination in 1991, and also a speaker at their committee hearings for Religious symbols in Schools for the Kirpan.
She has lectured on the Status of Women in the Sikh Religion at the University of Calgary and also at the World Sikh conference in Amritsar, India. Her interfaith participation includes the Peace Address at the Pan-Canadian Petroleum Ltd.’s Prayer for Peace and numerous presentations of Sikhism with the Calgary Interfaith Society and Calgary Women in Spirituality. She was on the organizing committee of all the Spirituality in Medicine conferences at the University of Calgary. Currently, Dr. Harjot Kaur serves as the Chairman of the Calgary Regional Health Authority Spiritual Care Advisory Committee which advises the Health Region on issues pertaining to patient’s faith and religion and promotes spiritual care in the wellbeing and healing of patients.
Harjot Kaur has served as convenor of the Sikh Youth Federation of Canada, Alberta Branch during which time she was the Chief organizer for the opening ceremonies for Gurdwara Dashmesh Culture Centre. Since 1989, she has been an active member of the Khalsa Council, which is the leadership body of the International Sikh Dharma and is a member of their ministerial board.
Within the Sikh community, Harjot Kaur was the Chief organizer for the first two Sikh Youth Conferences in Calgary commemorating the Tercentenary of the Khalsa. She has devoted her energy to spreading the Guru’s teaching via Gurbani Kirtan with English transliteration so that the heart of Sikh youth can be touched and transformed by the Guru’s word.
Sandeep Kaur Heer, Secretary
Sandeep Kaur Heer is a highly respected leader with a career of impressive successes in clinical and management roles. She is recognized for her collaborative approach, level of content expertise and the professional rapport she has developed with various groups throughout her career. She is thoughtful and utilizes an inquisitive approach to change management while maintaining careful attention to patient- and family-centered care.
Sandeep migrated to Canada in 1999 after obtaining a Bachelor of Nursing degree from PGI Chandigarh in India. She has worked as a Registered Nurse, Nursing Preceptor, Flow- Coordinator, Site Manager, Project Manager and now as a Unit Manager with Alberta Health Services. Sandeep has also worked as sessional instructor with the University of Calgary and Mount Royal University. She is currently enrolled and working toward completion of the Master of Health Studies program at Athabasca University.
She has established and maintained solid and valuable working relationships with internal teams at AHS and external stakeholders, which will help us to navigate our project for the community forward. Sandeep has superb analytical and decision-making skills; she is proactive and futuristic in nature. She is a skilful coach and teacher with the ability to inspire and build confidence in others. The proficiency of several languages (English, Punjabi and Hindi) makes Sandeep as an effective communicator.
Sandeep has served as a volunteer in the community, namely in fund-raising efforts and volunteer work at the Gurdwara and schools. Sandeep has two children (boy and girl) and is involved in their in the school, basketball and gymnastics. When her busy schedule allows, she enjoys reading and helping others to excel in their potential by being a coach and mentor in the community.
Sandeep is committed to serving the Punjabi community. She believes advocating for a place for seniors to call home that provides culturally appropriate service is one means of fulfilling that commitment. Sandeep also believes in staying connected to our roots and following that path to serve our elderly with compassionate care, love, and respect.
Ramneet Singh Kainth, Board Member
Ramneet is currently working as a Registered Nurse within Alberta Health Services at the South Health Campus Hospital. His current role involves completing assessments and referrals for Home Care Services as well as the placement of patients in the various streams of Assisted Living and Long Term Care under Transition Services. Throughout his career, he has worked in various settings including Acute Inpatient Psychiatry, Psychiatric Emergency Services, the Psychiatric Outreach Response Team, the South Mobile Response Team and Medical Psychiatry.
Ramneet was born and raised in Montreal and moved to Calgary in his late teenage years. He now calls Calgary home and is a proud Calgarian. He completed his Bachelor of Nursing at Mount Royal University and is actively exploring post graduate studies.
His passion to serve the elderly was fostered at a young age in the company of his ill grandparents. Since that time, he has remained actively involved through various volunteer organizations in varying capacities including Sikh Youth Calgary, the Dilwalk Foundation and Punjabi Community Health Services. Ramneet is also actively involved at his local Gurudwara (Sikh Temple), the Dasmesh Culture Center and continues to explore new avenues for service to the community.
Jaswinder Singh Mangat, Volunteer Program Coordinator
Jaswinder (Jas) Mangat has lived in Calgary for 22 years after emigrating from India. After obtaining a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Mount Royal University, Jas specialized in the securities industry and obtained financial investment certifications. Currently, Jas is a banking advisor and assists clients in setting and achieving their financial goals. Within this role, Jas regularly interacts with clients on both sides of the financial spectrum from those who are simply living at or below poverty line and those who are at a comfortable state of living. Jas also shares his time with local schools and teaching youth about the importance of financial management. He has been a passionate volunteer with the Junior Achievement program for 5 years.
With this same passion of providing guidance and service to others, Jas has volunteered in a wide range of events with the Sikh youth community in Calgary. He has volunteered regularly during the Annual Vaisakhi and Nagar Kirtan, served as Team Lead on the SYC Mentorship Program, and led many community fundraisers. Jas led a successful campaign during the Light the Night Walk for Leukemia where the Sikh Youth Calgary team was awarded as the Top Youth Team in Canada.
During Jas’ extensive volunteering experiences, his drive to serve others was never quite satisfied and Jas now aims to serve our elders in their aging. He has been volunteering actively at the Clifton Manor facility in Calgary and meeting weekly with the Punjabi residents. By this first hand experience, he shares how critical a culturally sensitive nursing home can be for a patient to ensure their aging years are as most precious as can be. Jas hopes to carry forward this experience and aid in constructing Calgary’s first Punjabi nursing home.