May 2014

#YesAllWomen – A modern day feminist response to tragedy

By now, you’ve probably heard about the horrific act of violence carried out by Elliot Rodger this past weekend in Santa Barbara. Before he committed his awful crimes, Rodger took to the internet to leave behind a video and manifesto, which detail his deep-rooted anti-woman views.

Technology – An ally in the shelter movement

Did you know that nearly 8 out of 10 Canadians are now online? You may not be too surprised. We live in an era where we’re surrounded by technology on a daily basis. Social media, email, and smartphones have all become the norm in how we communicate with one another.

In our last post, The Risks of Technology in Shelters, we talked about how technology, when used improperly, can put women living in shelters at risk.

Survey paints disturbing picture of need

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Like all 13 of the women’s shelters in Toronto, the physical address of Interval House is, out of necessity, a carefully guarded secret.

But because of that need for secrecy, few outsiders understand the urgent need for financial support.

This month, the Canadian Network of Women's Shelters and Transition Houses lifted the veil slightly on that need, with the results of its first-ever national survey painting a very disturbing picture.

"I was more happy in the shelter than my own house"

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In the end, it was a fight about food that finally drove Maria* from her violent, hard-drinking husband.

She’d endured five years of physical and mental abuse, but on that final day in her home she couldn’t bear that her husband was refusing to feed his own children.

He constantly complained about having to provide, yet wouldn’t help Maria with the tools she needed to learn English (Spanish is her native tongue), get a job, or go to school.

"School's out" takes on new meaning for children of abused women

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It’s a shocking reality that as kids across Canada prepare to toss the books aside and celebrate the start of a long hot summer, thousands will be fleeing their homes with mothers who are escaping abusive relationships.

Christmas isn’t the only time of year that sees a spike in the numbers of women seeking shelter. In fact all across Canada, late spring is one of the busiest times, and Interval House is no exception.

The reason? These women — battered and abused but not broken —are putting their kids first.

The Risks of Technology in Shelters

Technology has had some very positive effects on our society. In fact, smartphones, tablets, apps, and other technologies can actually support empowering and advocating for women who are experiencing violence.

Cyber Stalking

The internet has become an essential part of our daily lives. And although it has many advantages and positive uses, there is, unfortunately, a dark side to the cyber world: cyber stalking and harassment.

Cyber stalking is using the Internet or other electronic means to stalk or harass a person, a group of people, or an organization. It can include a variety of activities such as false accusations or statements, making threats, identity theft, etc.

I Am Rising Because…

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“I am rising because I refuse to accept violence against women.” – Former resident of Interval House.

On Monday, April 28th, Interval House took part in the One Billion Rising rally at Yonge-Dundas Square. And as soon as we arrived, we could tell something big was about to happen.

Just after 5:30, the song Respect began blaring through the speakers. And suddenly, the crowd of people gathered in the square all stood together with their right index finger raised high in the air. It began. We were rising.

Nobody’s Perfect is Back!

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Spring is a time of renewal. A time of personal growth and self-reflection. Which is why we couldn’t think of a better time to bring back the Nobody’s Perfect workshop series!

When new mothers first come to us, they often feel scared and alone. And a lot of that fear comes from the thought of raising their children on their own. In our experience, abusers will often control all aspects of their partners lives – including how children are raised.

Electronic Violence Against Women: Part 1 - Introduction

In the last few years, Interval House has noticed a disturbing and increasingly common trend – electronics as a means to abuse women. Electronic violence against women (E-VAW) is a terrifying way for abusers to victimize women. Of course, that’s not to say that technology is only used for abusive purposes. Technological advancements have allowed our sector to reach out to more women than ever before, and create awareness about the issue of abuse on a global scale.