Education & Events

Mobilizing Knowledge for Child Health Researchers, Clinicians, Students, Policy Makers & Communities

Through strategic partnerships and investments in multidisciplinary research, the Leong Centre will develop effective evidence-based health knowledge,  interventions and policies for use in hospitals, schools and at home to prevent adverse outcomes and help all children thrive—especially underprivileged and at-risk families.

The Leong Centre Rounds lecture series provides a venue to host researchers, community members and policy users to showcase how they are making an impact on child health equity. Through these monthly virtual 1-hour sessions, we bring attention to pressing issues in child health equity research and foster opportunities for questions and discussion. These accredited rounds are held on the last Monday of the month, in partnership with Child Health Evaluative Sciences (CHES) at the SickKids Research Institute. These lectures are being held virtually on Zoom at this meeting link until further notice. 

Hosted by: Dr. Eyal Cohen MD, MSc, FRCPC

Program Head, Child Health Evaluative Sciences, The Hospital for Sick Children

Co-Director, The Edwin S.H. Leong Centre for Healthy Children, University of Toronto


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Past Events


Thursday September 30, 2021 | Health Equity Rounds for Orange Shirt Day: "Complex Care in a Colonial World: Health Equity Through Trauma-Informed, Culturally Safe Practice"

Indigenous children frequently present as complex cases for one major reason: because colonialism is not good for Indigenous people. Providing specialized care to people who have experienced colonization means using trauma-informed care and culturally safe care to prevent further harm. On these rounds, we will examine the various forms of trauma that have been researched and defined over the past four decades, the effects of trauma on Indigenous people and what this means for their engagement strategies and coping methods, the effects of trauma on Indigenous family structure and function, how trauma changes a survivor’s relationship with their physical body, and the effects of colonization on personal and collective agency. This session will also provide clinicians and other staff with concrete actions you can take to provide trauma-informed care and support Indigenous approaches to healing and wellness.

Suzanne Methot is the author of the non-fiction book Legacy: Trauma, Story, and Indigenous Healing and co-author of the secondary textbook Aboriginal Beliefs, Values, and Aspirations. She has worked in advocacy and direct–service positions at Indigenous agencies since 1992, using Indigenous culture-based approaches to serve community members who are marginalized by racism, poverty, homelessness, health status, addictions, mental-health challenges, crime, and victimization, and is also a former board member at the Queen West Community Health Centre in Toronto. Suzanne currently works as a consultant to the education and health care sectors, working with school boards and organizations including the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. Born in Vancouver and raised in Peace River, Alberta, Suzanne is Asiniwachi Nehiyaw (Rocky Mountain Cree) of mixed Indigenous and European heritage. She currently lives on the unceded territory of the Snuneymuxw Nation, near Nanaimo, BC.

May 31, 2021 | Leong Centre Rounds with CHES: "School-Based Health Care: The Model Schools Pediatric Health" 

Dr. Sloane Freeman is a pediatrician in St. Michael's Hospital’s Inner City Health Program, who has dedicated her career to groundbreaking work and research bringing school-based health care to under-served communities. Dr. Freeman is the founder and lead for the Model Schools Pediatric Initiative, an innovative program to bring developmental and mental-health care to over 50 inner-city schools. Developed in partnership with the Toronto District School Board, the initiative is the first program of its kind in Canada. Dr. Freeman is a scientist with MAP Centre for Urban Health Solutions in the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael’s Hospital, and an assistant professor in the University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine’s Department of Pediatrics.

May 6, 2021 | Psychiatry Grand Rounds with the Leong Centre: "What have we learned about child mental health during the pandemic?"

Jala Rizeq joined SickKids in September 2020 as a Clinical Research Fellow. She is funded through the Research Training Centre Clinician Scientist Training Program (CSTP) Fellowship and the Centre for Brain and Mental Health as a Kimel Family Fellow.

Katherine Tombeau Cost is a Research Associate in the Department of Psychiatry at SickKids. Prior to joining SickKids in 2016, she completed a Ph.D. in Neuroscience at Tulane University in New Orleans, and a postdoctoral fellowship at University of Toronto and CAMH.

Natasha Saunders is a pediatrician and clinician-investigator in the Division of Pediatric Medicine at SickKids and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics and IHPME at the University of Toronto. She is also an Adjunct Scientist in the Mental Health and Addictions and Life Stage programs ICES.

Alene Toulany is a Pediatrician and Adolescent Medicine Specialist at SickKids and Assistant Professor in the Department of Paediatrics and IHPME at the University of Toronto. She is also an Associate Scientist-Track Investigator at the SickKids Research Institute, an ICES Fellow and co-leads the Adolescent Medicine Consultation Service and Clinics at SickKids.

Tricia Williams is a Clinical Neuropsychologist at SickKids and leads the Neonatal Neuropsychological services for assessment and consultation for children & families.

May 5, 2021 | Paediatric Grand Rounds - Meredith & Friends with the Leong Centre: "Reimagining our Communities: Co-Creating Healthier Futures in Partnership"

Dr. Ripudaman Singh Minhas, MD MPH FRCPC
Developmental Pediatrician, Women’s and Children’s Health Program
Director of Research, Department of Pediatrics, St. Michael’s Hospital,
Unity Health Toronto
Assistant Professor, Temerty Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto
Associate Scientist, Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute,
St. Michael’s Hospital

Dr. Shazeen Suleman, MD MPH (FRCPC)
Physician Lead, Newcomer to Canada Clinic
Undergraduate Medical Education Lead
Women and Children's Health, St. Michael's Hospital, Unity Health Toronto
Investigator, Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute
Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Temerty Faculty of Medicine,
University of Toronto

Dr. Ashley Vandermorris, MD, MSc, FRCPC
Staff Physician, Division of Adolescent Medicine
Assistant Professor, University of Toronto

April 19, 2021 | Leong Centre Rounds with CHES: "Buffering Poverty-Related Risks for Children with Chronic Health Conditions: Is it all on the parents?"

Dr. Anne Fuller, MD, MSc, FRCPC is a paediatrician and early career clinical researcher at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), and a PhD student at McMaster University. Dr. Fuller’s research is focused on understanding the effects of poverty-related risks (material hardship, early adversity) on child health and development over the life course, with a particular interest the cumulative vulnerabilities experienced by children with chronic health conditions and their families. Her research also aims to understand buffers at the family and community level that may offer protection in the setting of these risks, with the goal of informing meaningful, scalable interventions.

March 8, 2021 | Leong Centre Rounds with CHES: "Doing Research in Schools During the COVID-19 Pandemic"

Katarina Maximova's research focuses on solutions to improve the early life experiences, development, and well-being of children and youth experiencing poverty. Dr. Maximova played a major role in evaluating the impact of the APPLE Schools (A Project Promoting Healthy Living for Everyone in Schools) intervention program targeting physical activity, healthy eating, and mental health among more than 21,000 children and youth experiencing marginalization in Canada. She also spent several years with the Government of Canada working on policy issues focused on poverty in early life, ‘working poor’ families, income support for low-income families, family-friendly policies, affordable housing, and homelessness.

Monday February 1, 2021 | Leong Centre Rounds with CHES: "Understanding Son Preference, A Community-Based Participatory Action Research Project"

Susitha Wanigaratne, PhD, MHSc, BSc is a RESTRACOMP Research Fellow in CHES and at ICES. She is a social epidemiologist whose work examines immigration as a social determinant of maternal, infant and child health and is a co-author on the recent ICES report examining COVID-19 disparities among immigrants, refugees and other newcomers in Ontario.

Manvir Bhangu, MA, BA is a gender equity advocate, researcher and a community mobilizer. She has a BA in Human Rights & Human Diversity and Criminology from Wilfrid Laurier University and a Masters from McMaster University in Globalization and the Human Condition. Manvir is the Founder and Executive Director of Laadliyan, Celebrating & Empowering Daughters, a nonprofit organization that inspires South Asian daughters of all ages to become empowered individuals through education, engagement and awareness.

Pamela Uppal, MA, BA cares deeply about how women experience the world and so over the past 10 years she has focused on building gender equitable systems by bridging frontline work, research initiatives, and public policy advocacy activities. Pamela graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in women and gender studies and philosophy from the University of Toronto.


Wednesday December 2, 2020 | Paediatric Grand Rounds with the Leong Centre: "Evaluation the Canadian Child Benefit and Universal Child Care Benefit"

Mark Stabile is the Stone Chaired Professor of Wealth Inequality and Professor ofEconomics at INSEAD and Professor at the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto.At INSEAD he directs the James M. and Cathleen D. Stone Centre for the Study of Wealth Inequality at INSEAD and is the Deputy Academic Director of the Hoffmann Institute for Business and Society. From 2007 to2015 he was the founding Director of the School of Public Policy and Governance at theUniversity of Toronto and Professor of Economics and Public Policy at the RotmanSchool of Management, University of Toronto. From 2003-2005 he was the Senior Policy Advisor to the Ontario Minister of Finance, where he worked on tax, health, andeducation policy. Dr. Stabile is the recipient of the Carolyn Tuohy award in Public Policy, the John Polanyi Prize in Economics, the Harry Johnson Prize from the Canadian Economics Association (twice) and Excellence in Teaching Awards from the Rotman School and INSEAD.Hisrecent work focuses on inequality, poverty, child health, health care financing, and taxpolicy. He has advised the Governments of the United States, Canada, and Ontario,among others, on health care reform and programs to reduce child poverty. He isassociate editor of the Journal of Health Economics. Professor Stabile received his Ph.D.from Columbia University and his BA from the University of Toronto.

Monday October 19, 2020 | Leong Centre Rounds with CHES: "Leveraging an Equity-Lens to Characterize the Risks for COVID-19 Acquisition and Transmission and Optimal Intervention Strategies"

Dr. Stefan Baral, MD, MPH, MBA, MSc, FRCPC, CCFP is a physician epidemiologist and an Associate Professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. Stefan completed his certification in Community Medicine as a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and Family medicine with the Canadian Council of Family Physicians. Stefan provides clinical care in homeless shelters in Toronto through the Inner City Health Associates. Through his role as the Director of the Key Populations Program, Stefan has led HIV epidemiology and implementation research focused on characterizing the epidemiology of HIV and effective HIV prevention, treatment, and care approaches for gay men and other men who have sex with men, transgender women, and female sex workers across Western and Central, and Southern Africa. With the arrival of COVID-19 in Toronto, Stefan co-led the establishment of the first recovery and isolation site for homeless people in Toronto and has been providing in person care throughout in shelters. Stefan has published more than ten COVID-19 related papers as a member of research teams focused on characterizing heterogeneity in individual, network, and structural risks and developing strategies to address these risks.