Storyteller, Canada Celebrates Folklore, Slovakia
Maria Habanikova is a Slovak-Canadian professional, public servant, and community organizer residing in Ottawa. She is an active member of the Ottawa Slovak Community and a volunteer with the Slovak Spectrum program on Rogers TV. She has been a member of the Ottawa Storytellers Board since 2020 and a Fora's Girls on Boards program's coach for young directors and future board members since 2019.
She is an avid reader and creative writer (creative nonfiction and short stories) who has written for the Canadian Slovak newspaper and had a piece published in the 2021 Big Art Book 8: New Depths by the Scarborough Arts Centre. Maria has been writing with the Writers Collective of Canada (WCC) since November 2020 and facilitating exploratory writing workshops since May 2021. In the summer 2021, she had been selected to participate in WCC's Write On program and in June 2022 published two pieces in the Collective's 2022 anthologies, Front Lines. Maria is also a dancer and Zumba Fitness instructor who has been raising funds for local and Canadian charities through her annual outdoor Zumba classes and donating her skills and energy to existing fundraising efforts, awareness events, and community initiatives. Maria believes in the power of stories to create human connections vital for making the world a better, more empathetic place.