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The Vancouver Friends For Life Society is a registered not-for-profit society

(BIN registration number: 138277728RR0001)

which enhances the wellness of individuals living with very serious illnesses, by providing complementary health and support services. 

For a copy of our constitution and bylaws, please click here.

Meeting Minutes

Board Meetings are held every month. Meeting minutes will be available to the public below.

Board of Directors.

Sameer Ismail


Sameer is a Financial Consultant with IG Wealth Management. He has prior background advising on issues related to governance of non-profit societies. He has volunteered extensively in Canada and the United Kingdom with charities providing services to marginalized communities and people living with HIV/AIDS. Sameer strongly believes in the value of a holistic approach to care and well-being, an area where Friends for Life excels.

Sameer holds degrees in Political Science and Law.

Sheila Giffen

Board Director

Sheila Giffen is a PhD Candidate in the Department of English Language and Literatures and a Sessional Lecturer in the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice at UBC. Drawing on a transnational archive of literature from the U.S. and South Africa, her research analyses literary responses to the HIV/AIDS crisis. Formerly the Museum Manager at Roedde House Museum, and the Executive Director of Canadian Women in the Literary Arts, Sheila has several years of experience in non-profit leadership, grant-writing, fundraising and volunteer coordination. She started volunteering as a host at Friends for Life in December 2018 and is honoured to be joining the board. 

Drew Morris


Drew grew up in a small town in southern Ontario, with dreams of finding a career where he could work with numbers every day. To make this happen, he graduated from the University of Waterloo with a Bachelor of Mathematics with a focus in Accounting and then received his CA designation in 2012.

He articled with a firm in a small town in Alberta, since then he has held a Controller position at a mid-sized company and he currently holds the position of Senior Manager at KBH Chartered Professional Accountants. His work is split between providing services to owner managed companies in a variety of industries and auditing both profit, and non-profit entities. He’s not all business…he ran the Olympic Torch for the Vancouver Olympic Games in 2010 and he also enjoys spending lots of time with his two huskies and enjoys playing all types of sports and is passionate about music and watching Netflix. 

Drew joined the board of Vancouver Friends for Life in September 2021 and is very excited to assist with everything related to the finances of the organization.

Chris Girodat


Chris Girodat (he/him) is the executive director of the Capilano Students’ Union on the beautiful North Shore, a board governance consultant and meeting facilitator with over a decade of experience in board governance and operations management in the non-profit and retail sectors, and is a member of the leadership team of 100 Gay Men for a Cause Vancouver. As a queer activist, Chris is passionate about supporting the 2SLGBTQQIA+ community in overcoming barriers and systems of oppression, including the disproportionate impact of life-interrupting illness on our community.

John Emmerton

Board Director

John is a Certified Financial Planner with IG Wealth Management. He
has over a decade of experience helping individuals and corporations
achieve their financial goals. John is passionate about the vision and
mission of the Vancouver Friends For Life Society and a vocal
proponent of expanding the benefits that VFFLS provides to our

Find out more...

Got a question for the Board of Directors? Feel free to email us at

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