top of page
  • ONWA

Remembering Mona Hardy: A Legacy of Activism and Advocacy

It is with a heavy heart that the Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA) shares the passing of our dear friend Mona Hardy. Mona’s life was driven by sharp humour, activism, and advocacy. She was a woman who dedicated her life to giving and fighting for marginalized and forgotten people. As a proud trans-woman, she was always ahead of her time in addressing the rights of the Trans-community and Two-Spirit peoples.

In Mona’s recently released memoire Lost Between the Cracks she openly shares her heart, love of community, and life path. 

“…here I am. Some say victim, some say survivor, I say I’m Mona.”

Mona’s life was a tapestry of courage, resilience, and unwavering determination, inspiring countless others to find their voice and take up their leadership. Mona’s journey was one of challenges, heartbreaks, and triumphs. She overcame adversity and discrimination, refusing to be defined by limitations others tried to impose on her. 

Mona’s life shaped her into a warrior, a fearless leader who fought tirelessly for Indigenous women and Two-Spirit people’s rights. Her unwavering commitment to social justice and her infectious spirit ignited a fire in the hearts of those who were lucky enough to spend time with her. Her ability to empower others to challenge oppression and demand change will live on in those folks who received her gift, and they too will pass that to the next generation.

Mona led a support group for Trans and Two-Spirit people through the Northwest Community Health Centre. She volunteered for many agencies and institutions; she was also a member of ONWA’s provincial advisory committee for the Anti-Human Trafficking programs and a strong advocate for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Two-Spirit people. 

Mona’s guidance was fundamental in the development of ONWA’s Journey to Safe SPACES Report. The report was based on extensive engagement with over 3,360 community members and the ongoing relationship with 250 self-identified human trafficking Survivors who have shared their stories. 

The report resulted in 14 recommendations to address Human Trafficking. The Province of Ontario used this report to guide the development of the second Provincial Anti-Human Trafficking Strategy, which is now the largest in Canada. Mona was also incredibly supportive as ONWA created several of our other programs that collaborate with trafficked Survivors. 

Mona’s values were grounded in giving and helping others, “Before people managed without money. They managed with community. They helped each other; they built together as a community.” Mona’s experience and love was open to the wider world she travelled and lived in. 

“That little girl I used to be would be proud of me, too, and perhaps that is most important.”

Mona, you will be extremely missed, and your legacy will carry on for generations to come. Your selfless life’s work embodies Creator’s way, may he hold you close on your journey to the stars. 

Mona leaves behind a legacy of transformative impact and a world that is more compassionate because of her efforts.

Sending condolences to her family, friends, and community.


The Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA)

721 views0 comments


bottom of page