About us

Our team

Meet the hardworking people behind React and Reverse. 

Shawn McLaren

he/himChief Learning Officer

As the Chief Learning Officer, Shawn oversees the development and standards of training nationally for St. John Ambulance. He has spent the last 15 years in adult education and over the last 5 years has expanded his efforts on integrating opioid poisoning response training into all SJA curriculum as well as supporting special projects focused specifically on this public health crisis.


Opioid Poisoning Response Training (OPRT) Team

Lorlyn Chan

she/herProgram Manager

As the Program Manager of the Underserved project, Lorlyn is an advocate for harm -reduction focused practice and trauma informed care. Lorlyn is a firm supporter of community-lead knowledge and comes from a background in drug monitoring services, bringing with her a wealth of community awareness.


Maria Mirzoyan

she/herProgram Evaluation Manager

Maria is our Program Evaluation Specialist, leading performance measurement and evaluations for all 3 programs. She brings 6 years of evaluation experience in the non-profit and healthcare sector, and holds a Master of Health Evaluation Degree from University of Waterloo. Maria is also Vice-President of the Canadian Evaluation Society – Ontario Chapter, Board of Directors. She has a passion for evaluation, in telling the story, and ensuring all voices are heard.


Atyia Police

she/herInstructional Designer, SUAP

With years of experience as a Digital Content Developer and Instructional Designer, Atyia brings a wealth of creative and design skills to SJA’s Substance Use and Addictions program. Here, she collaborates with various team members, creating learning materials and courses in line with the Harm Reduction and Mental Health Curriculum.


Alanna Balint

she/herProgram Manager

As Program Manager for SJA’s Reaching Home stream, Alanna’s efforts are focused on supporting homeless shelter and support organizations with access to relevant training and life-saving naloxone kits, and fostering conversations around supportive site policies for people who use drugs. With more than a decade of frontline experience in restorative justice and peer-led supervised consumption, Alanna is an advocate for decriminalization, safer supply, and inclusive policy development, and is a firm believer in community-led interventions.


Deanna Reilly

she/herProject Manager, Underserved

Bringing over 5 years of Human Resource Management and Administration skills to the team, Deanna project manages the team’s priorities and oversees the Facilitator Support Team. Deanna also manages the certification process of new facilitators within SJA’s National Office, SJA’s Provincial Branches, and with many Partnered Organizations nation-wide for the OPRT Curriculum.  


Killian Cuppage

he/himProject Administrator

As the Project Administrator, Killian is responsible for guiding and scheduling the incoming OPRT facilitators throughout the various stages of the Train-the-Trainer process. Killian also assists with communication between partner organizations, and councils within SJA. Killian comes from an extensive background in social services, having worked in community planning, education, and various non-profit organizations.


Claire Kingston

she/herManager, Community Engagement

Claire oversees the community engagement team, which supports communities and individuals across the country enrolled in the OPRT program. In line with the principles of community-led approaches, this includes outreach and relationship-building with underserved communities to develop customized approaches to training.


Camille Balda

she/herNational Facilitation Lead

Incredibly passionate about Harm Reduction and Poisoning Awareness, Camille brings a unique mix of lived, and professional experience to the team. In her role, you can find her teaching the OPRT course to marginalized communities, training new facilitators to use the OPRT curriculum, and advocating for a safe supply.


Shamima Begum

she/herCommunity Engagement Coordinator

Shamima is committed to providing support to meet the unique needs of the underserved community through outreach and education for nasal naloxone. She has worked with the marginalized population in various settings, bringing experience and knowledge of factors that may impact the underserved community’s well-being.


Julie Fagan

she/herProgram Facilitator and Registrar, Reaching Home

Julie is a Program Facilitator/Registrar who is extremely passionate about harm reduction, decriminalization, and the dignity of people who use drugs. She is a registered social worker with a degree in criminology and brings a wealth of experience working frontline in many different roles, always with a passion for informed care and stigma reduction. Julie has conducted research in her own community investigating substance use patterns and behaviours of queer folx, and hopes that one day poisoning response and substance use will be viewed through an anti-oppressive lens. Julie prides herself on being a fierce advocate and ally and is thrilled to be working in the Reaching Home program supporting the precariously housed population.


Michaela DeSousa

she/herRecruitment & Communications Coordinator

Michaela supports recruitment for the OPRT Train-the-Trainer and Partner Programs by assessing and appointing potential candidates to deliver our course successfully. As a member of the Facilitator Support Team, Michaela utilizes her frontline experience facilitating workshops to underserved communities, as well as her anti-oppressive lens, to ensure that the program maintains it’s high standard for combatting stigma and improving access to care.


Karley Babb

they/themPartner Program National Facilitation Lead

As the Partner Program National Facilitation Lead, Karley can be found training community partners to be new facilitators to teach the OPRT curriculum. Karley brings a mixed of lived and professional experience with them – they are a member of their local harm reduction community, and an advocate for regulated supply.


Shalini Tomar

she/herProgram Facilitator and Registrar, Reaching Home

Deeply rooted in her experiences as a frontline worker, Shalini continues to work with folks through life-affirming harm reduction practices. Shalini offers a foundational educational approach to our communities by providing opioid poisoning response training and naloxone kits to frontline workers and volunteers. In her teachings, Shalini aims to offer workers effective tools by building awareness of the scope of this crisis and dismantling the myths attached to it.


Nick Locke

he/himProgram Facilitator and Registrar, Reaching Home

Nick is a Program Facilitator and Registrar with a background in Supervised Consumption Sites and shelter case management.  A Human Services Counsellor and Medical First Responder, Nick brings a valuable mix of lived and professional experience to the role.  Thrilled to be part of SJA’s Reaching Home program, Nick is excited to be helping facilitate low barrier education/skills and naloxone distribution to those who need it!


Accidental Drug Poisoning Crisis – Community of Practice

Megan Bertrim

she/herSocial Media Specialist and Content Creator

Bringing a rich background of education and experience in communications, Megan Bertrim is the Social Media Specialist and Content Creator for the Accidental Drug Poisoning Crisis – Community of Practice program. Through the use of social media channels, she strives to build an inclusive and informative online community.


Efe Aigbede

she/herKnowledge and Data Analyst

Efe Aigbede is the Knowledge and Data Analyst for the Accidental Drug Poisoning Crisis – Community of Practice program. With a background in research and healthcare data analytics, she is building a National Drug Alert System of drug supply trends in collaboration with community partners and drug checking organisations.


Lisa Marie Yang

she/herProgram Manager

Lisa oversees SJA’s Accidental Drug Poisoning Crisis – Community of Practice (ADPC-CoP) program and team. Lisa has extensive experience in the non-profit sector and is extremely passionate about making services accessible to communities in need. You can catch Lisa at our monthly virtual events via Zoom that brings together frontline workers, people who use drugs, and those who love those who use drugs to share knowledge and resources about the toxic and unregulated drug supply.


About St. John Ambulance

St. John Ambulance is at the forefront, providing first aid training and medical assistance to people in need. In any disaster, human or natural, St. John Ambulance Canada volunteers are there to offer assistance, expertise, caring, and compassion.