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October has been an exciting month, with many reasons to celebrate including the launch of our new PSA. But did you know it was also Women’s History Month in Canada? It’s time for Canadians to celebrate the achievements of women and girls throughout our history. And it gives us an opportunity to learn about the valuable contributions that women and girls have made.
As anyone who runs a household knows, no sooner do we get home from the supermarket than it feels like it’s almost time to restock the dwindling supplies in the fridge and pantry. It never ends! Interval House maintains the same level of activity of the average bustling household. But instead of feeding just one family, we have many more mouths to feed, diverse diets to consider as well as diapers to change on a daily basis. Our grocery carts are something to behold!
The rain, the bugs, the sleeping bag, the BEARS—that’s what it’s all about. Spending time in the wilderness—canoeing, hiking and camping—is the ultimate exercise in character building! It is one of those life experiences that we carry with us forever. The chance to face our fears and overcome obstacles, the feeling of resilience and the fun of staying positive in spite of life’s challenges—these skills cannot be taught in a classroom.
They say you never get a second chance to make a first impression. So when Brianne showed up for her job interview with a beautiful new briefcase, she could see the employer was impressed. She says the briefcase may have clinched the job. It was just a symbol of the professionalism, poise and confidence Brianne herself was projecting. Those are the real reasons she made such a great impression.
The changing of the seasons brings an eerie echo to Interval House. It’s hard to comprehend the cyclical nature of abuse. We hope we’ll be wrong about it. We hope the next wave of women and children seeking shelter and safety won’t arrive when the school year ends, and again when the winter holidays arrive. But that’s what happens. So we must be prepared.
Today Interval House and KBS’s new Cause Company launched a PSA campaign in response to the recent swell in news coverage of high profile domestic violence incidents.
Kate and Will are having another baby, the fabulous Neil Patrick Harris wed and the NFL finally suspended Ray Rice for being an abuser. These were the headlines that dominated September 8th. An interesting commentary -- both good and bad -- about the world we live in.
My Twitter feed was full to the brim with people sharing and re-sharing the horrific Ray Rice video of his brutal attack on his then-fiancée, Janay Palmer.
When the school year ends, we always hear the kids at Interval House celebrating and singing “No more homework allllll summer!”
Late spring and early summer are one of the busiest times of the year for Interval house and many other shelters across Canada, with women and children fleeing their homes at the end of the school year. We’ve seen many women wait until the end of the year to leave, to ease their children into the transition and provide as little interruption to their children’s schooling and routines as possible.
“The seed you plant may look small but it has deep roots and will grow into a mighty tree.” – BESS graduate.
Our Building Economic Self-Sufficiency (BESS) program began nearly 20 years ago, when we asked ourselves, “What’s missing? What’s stopping women from leaving their abusers?” We asked this question to our past residents and other shelter workers. And we heard the answer loud and clear: poverty.
“BESS helped me to envision a bright future.” – BESS Valedictorian.
On June 17th, 2014, Interval House hosted its 4th Annual BESS Graduation Ceremony. The ceremony was a wonderful opportunity to honour all of the women who graduated from our Building Economic Self Sufficiency (BESS) program in the last year.