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Ariella Orbach

Ariella Orbach

Ariella is an experienced project planner and manager, capacity builder, facilitator and trainer. She studied anthropology at McGill University and earned a Master of Science degree in rural planning and development at the University of Guelph.

She has worked with both youth and adults, and spent seven years managing research, development and capacity-building projects with rural Indigenous communities in Canada, Panama and Chile. Her objective is to promote partnerships with communities that build local capacity, solve development challenges and achieve locally-defined objectives.

Ariella has a special interest in the ways Indigenous communities can use video and film-making to share knowledge and ideas about local development needs and solutions—and to recover ancestral knowledge. She is co-founder of the Canada-Chile Strategic Video Initiative. She coordinated capacity-building video-production projects and played a leadership role at a film-making school operated by Indigenous community organizations in Chile.

Her master’s program took her to Panama, where she worked with Indigenous community members and leaders on community assessment, analysis, and planning for the redevelopment of a major conservation and eco-tourism project.

Ariella has been working on a participatory video project with Cree youth from a community in northern Quebec. The project developed technical and creative skills among community youth and empowered them to document a two-week canoe brigade exploring ancestral territory.

Ariella loves embedding herself in communities, getting to know the people through engagement and discussions that transcend cultural differences. She takes particular joy in seeing the pride that young people take in their video creations.