Canadian Youth Delegate to the WHA and PAHO DC


Interested in being the Canadian Youth Delegate for 2022? Apply now! (Deadline Extended to October 8th)


Meet the 2021 Canadian Youth Delegate

Hello and Bonjour!

My name is Surabhi Sivaratnam (SUE-ra-bee SEE-vuh-rat-numb, she/her), and as the 2021 Canadian youth delegate to the 74th WHA and the 59th PAHO DC, I will be joining the rest of the Canadian delegation in representing Canada at these international meetings. This delegation consists of a civil society representative, and leaders and staff members from the Office of International Affairs for the Health Portfolio (Public Health Agency of Canada), Global Affairs Canada, and Health Canada. 

As the Canadian youth delegate, it is my vision to inspire and evoke interest in global and international public health diplomacy, policy, and programming. I also hope to effectively and compassionately represent Canadian youth and the issues in global health that matter most to them. Thus, it is with this vision, that I ask you to please engage in the various opportunities listed here –– it is through these avenues that I hope to gain your guidance and assistance in establishing the priorities and recommendations for me to share with the Office of International Affairs for the Health Portfolio in advance of the WHA and the PAHO DC. 

Thank you sincerely for taking the time and energy to be a part of this movement –– I look forward to learning more about you and your ideas, and being in touch! 

Kind regards,

- Surabhi Sivaratnam

IMG_5886 - Surabhi Siva.jpg

About the Canadian Youth Delegate Program

Each year the World Health Organization (WHO) holds the World Health Assembly (WHA) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) holds the Pan American Health Organization Directing Council (PAHO DC). The 74th World Health Assembly will take place in Spring 2021 and the 59th Pan American Health Organization Directing Council will take place in Autumn 2021. These meetings are some of the largest health policy setting events, as it brings together health ministers and health representatives from the 194 World Health Organization (WHO) member states for WHA, and the 35 Member States in the Americas region for the PAHO DC. 


Each member country brings a delegation to the assembly to vote on key global health issues. The Government of Canada has had a youth delegate attend the WHA and PAHO DC, as a part of the Canadian delegation for the past 5 years. The Canadian Youth Delegate (CYD) offers a unique youth perspective on key health issues on the WHA and PAHO DC agendas, which informs the development of Canada’s positions and engagement during these meetings. The CYD engages with youth advocates from across the country, as well as around the world, to gather their views and to keep them updated on the outcomes of these meetings. 


Are you interested in getting involved? Find out more here


Get Involved

Discussion Forums

A space for youth to have discussions with one another on topics relevant to the 74th WHA and the 59th PAHO DC. 

Roundtable Discussions

An opportunity for Canadian youth to participate in virtual roundtables with youth from across Canada. (Limited spots)

Consultation Form

A form through which youth can share their insight on topics that will be discussed at the 74th WHA and the 59th PAHO DC.

The discussion forum and consultation form close on May 5th, 2021. Roundtable discussions are available on an ongoing basis until May 3rd, 2021.