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Are You Man Enough?

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Announcing Women’s House Serving Bruce & Grey’s Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® 2020 Virtual Walk

Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® event is usually held on a Sunday in May, to bring awareness to May’s Sexual Assault Awareness Month, and to start the hard conversations.  This year we’re going to make it a virtual walk!

Want to join in?  This year we’re doing a VIRTUAL WALK anytime from May 20 –September 30, 2020, and we’re asking you to do your walk in FUNKY SOCKS since we can’t get the shoes to you!  But that’s totally optional, we just want you to join in and get out there for that walk in any way that you want!   You could win an Amazon Alexa Echo, donated by Bruce Power!

To support any of our walkers with online pledges, please visit our Canada Helps donation site! 

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Here’s how you can easily join in, and help Women’s House:

Follow these simple steps:

  1. Anytime May 20 through September 30 (completed Pledge Sheets and donations must be received/postmarked before midnight September 30th to be eligible for the prize): Go to our website at www.whsbg.on.ca/are-you-man-enough
    1. Find the Registration Sheet at the bottom of this page (note these are generic forms, so some information, like shoe size, is not necessary for the virtual walk this year):
  1. Print it off, complete the information and scan/send it back to mlamont@whsbg.on.ca to get registered.
  2. Save it, then type your information right into the Word document. Save/send to mlamont@whsbg.on.ca to get registered.
  • Please let us know, in the email, when you plan to do your walk.
  1. You will receive a confirmation email within 72 hours, to confirm receipt of your form
    1. Find the Pledge Sheet at the bottom of this page and print off as many as you think you’ll need.  Collect/hand-write names and pledges from family and friends who want to support you in your walk and, in turn, support Women’s House Serving Bruce & Grey in the work we do.  (Note: completed Pledge Sheets and donations must be received/postmarked before midnight September 30th to be eligible for the prize):
  1. Completed Pledge Sheets: When you’re finished collecting Pledges (Pledge Sheets and donations must be received/postmarked by midnight September 30th to be eligible for the prize), you can scan and email your completed Pledge Sheets (to mlamont@whsbg.on.ca), or you mail the hard copies of the Pledge Sheets (along with cheques) to Women’s House Serving Bruce & Grey, P.O. Box 760, Kincardine, ON, N2Z 2Y2 (Note: make sure all names/mailing information is legible, so we can send them a tax receipt. Also, make a note if they have donated electronically through our CanadaHelps link, so we can match up the donation)
  2. Donations: You can add up all your donations and send in one cheque from you, or you can send the individual cheques from your pledges (cheques can be made out to Women’s House Serving Bruce & Grey). Just make a note beside all electronic donations, so we know that they were made through our CanadaHelps link on our website, so we can match them with your Pledge Sheet.  Make sure you get legible contact information for all your pledges on the Pledge Sheet so we can send them a tax receipt.
  • Electronic Donations: Alternatively, anyone can make a donation electronically, using the CanadaHelps (Donate) link on our website…. Just ask them to make sure they choose our Walk a Mile Fund from the drop-down options, and mention your name in the donation message so we know they are supporting you! You should also be sure you list them on your Pledge Sheet and make a note that they donated electronically on the CanadaHelps link, so we can match them to you.
  1. Find a FUNKY pair of socks that will stand out from a crowd (but don’t walk in a crowd, because we want you to respect physical distance), and set them aside for your walk day
  2. We usually have placards to share messages for the walk, but you could enlist your kids (make it a teachable moment and art class in one!), or make your own if you want… everything is totally optional!
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  4. When your walk day comes, put on those FUNKY socks, grab that placard and strut your way through that mile-long walk!  Make sure to take a photo/selfie and post it to your Facebook page, and tag @Women’s House Serving Bruce & Grey… or send it to us at mlamont@whsbg.on.ca
  5. The walk is usually meant for men only, but if, during this special virtual walk, you choose to make it a family affair, or have friends join you, please respect physical distancing guidelines, and get a photo of everyone and tag us!  Have fun!
  6. Be sure to start those difficult conversations, and keep them going!  You can make a difference!!

On October 6th we’ll announce the winner …. That’s the walker with the highest Pledges, and if that’s you, you could win an Amazon Alexa Echo (value $100) donated by Bruce Power

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One in every four women is abused. That means someone you know, someone you care about, has been or may become a victim of abuse. It may be your mother, your sister, your friend, one of your employees/co-workers or your daughter. Seventy-five percent of Canadian men feel it is important to speak out against gender based violence. Many are doing so through the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes®, not just talking the talk, but walking the walk donning red high-heeled shoes.

Your local women’s shelter needs your help.  Women’s House Serving Bruce & Grey (WHSBG) is a high-security shelter for abused women and their children. We never close, provide emergency and short term shelter, counseling and support free of charge.

Monies raised from Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® ensure shelter services always remain open 24/7 and free of charge.

If you are wanting to “walk the walk, and talk the talk,” you will find  links to the Walker’s Form and the Pledge Sheet.  Please fill out the Walker’s Form, for yourself as an individual or for your team, and send to mlamont@whsbg.on.ca.  The next step is to start collecting pledges and having great conversations about how you will end violence against women!

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Registration Form – 2020

Pledge Sheet.2020

Walk a Mile 2020 Instructions

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To support any of our walkers with online pledges, please visit our Canada Helps donation site! 

The court of public appeal is now open on sexual assault

(Original article found on ShorelineToday.ca)

The court of public appeal is now open on sexual assault.
That was the title of a letter to the editor from the Women’s House Serving Bruce and Grey that was given to myFM. They say they were compelled to write the letter as more woman come forward with claims of sexual abuse from former CBC radio star Jian Ghomeshi. In the letter, they talk about the fact that abuse doesn’t just exist in the world but in our own backyard here in Grey Bruce. During the first six months of this year the centre has served 441 local women and 57 children along with 3,682 crisis and support related calls. They also wanted to address a question asked by many who wondered why the woman accussing Ghomeshi of abuse didn’t come forward sooner. In the letter they say only 33 cases of abuse out of 1000 are actually reported to police.
The letter:
The court of public opinion is now open on sexual assault
This week you most likely heard and perhaps even struggled to come to terms with the recent Jian Ghomeshi allegations. It’s been difficult to listen to, read about and process. We’d rather believe that abuse simply does not exist in our world, but at the Women’s House Serving Bruce and Grey (WHSBG) we know all too well that it does. In the first six months of this year we have served 441 women and 57 children, with 3,682 crisis and support related calls.
The news of the Ghomeshi scandal spread quickly throughout social media. As the story progressed it gave us all an opportunity to think about how we as a society deal with matters of sexual abuse. People were talking about the unthinkable and the unspeakable, discussing sexual abuse around water coolers and in lunch rooms. The court of public opinion finally opened up to discuss sexual abuse, something that in our opinion was long overdue. The story falls within Woman Abuse Awareness month in Ontario, making it very timely for us to respond.
There are many different aspects of this story that we could address, however we found the question we read on Facebook and Twitter over and over again most troubling, “Why did these women not report the abuse to police right away?”
Let’s first start with the full picture provided to us by YWCA Canada. Out of every 1,000 sexual assaults, 33 are reported to police, 12 have charges laid, 3 lead to a conviction, allowing 997 assailants to walk free.
Why are only 33 cases out of every 1,000 reported to police? Well the short answer is because it is very difficult. Before a trial begins, sometimes years after the abuse took place, a woman lives in fear of her assailant, that he might retaliate. She finds it difficult not to feel ashamed when family, friends and acquaintances react with embarrassment or discomfort. She must deal with judgement, online comments, people questioning why she is doing this from loved ones that simply don’t understand. She is afraid of having her privacy invaded and often times afraid of how this will affect her career. It becomes far more about her than the assailant.
If the case goes to trial, she must withstand gruelling cross-examination with questions probing into the most intimate details of her life, in front of loved ones, if she is lucky enough to have support. It’s humiliating at best and just plain cruel at its worst. She must relive the abuse over and over again to the police, to the Crown Attorney, in pre-trial preparation and in the public eye during cross-examination.
How much simpler would it be to just try and forget it ever happened and walk away? Women do put themselves through this process to make sure their assailant never has an opportunity to abuse another woman. All for that nine percent who are reported and actually get convicted. And yet we still ask why.
At WHSBG we offer a safe shelter for women who have suffered abuse and their children; we counsel by telephone, in groups and in person to help those affected by abuse move on with their lives in a healthy way. We encourage all women to get counselling to help deal with their abuse and will walk with them through their journey whether they choose to remain silent or to press charges. You may call toll free 1-866-578-5566 to access compassionate and caring counselling.
The courage of a woman alone is not enough. During this month of Woman Abuse Awareness, we invite you to wear a purple scarf and show your support for abused women and children across Ontario. Wrapped in Courage purple scarves can be purchased for $15.00 at the following stores: Nine Waves in Lucknow & Kincardine, Curves in Kincardine, I Want That Bag Consignment in Lucknow, Belle of the Boudoir in Port Elgin, TNA Clothing in Paisley (remember they’ve moved next door to former Joannie’s Fashions), MacDonald’s Plus Ladies Wear and Amazing Assets in Walkerton, Suits Us in Hanover, Sisters on Huron and Trends Hair Salon in Southampton. All profits will go towards funding the many programs WHSBG offers to women and children in our community.
We are also participating in the Shine the Light on Women’s Abuse Campaign to raise awareness of woman abuse by shining a purple light in or on your house or business to stand in solidarity with abused women and help them understand that any shame or blame they may feel does not belong to them, but to the perpetrator of their abuse. Let’s turn Bruce and Grey purple this month to show our support to women experiencing abuse.
We at the WHSBG appreciate the support we get from our community. We value your support which enables us to keep doing the good work we do every day to achieve our goal to end abuse.
For more information please visit our website at www.whsbg.on.ca or if in crisis call 519-396-3655 or 911. Services are free for counselling programs, telephone support or to stay in the shelter. On behalf of the Board and Staff of Women’s House Serving Bruce & Grey
Cheryl Cottrill
Chair of the Communications Committee

Teens and Technology

You, as the parent, are sometimes feeling a little lost when it comes to technology and your children.  This PowerPoint presentation was put together by Ottawa Police and will bring you up to speed on how to deal with Sexting, Cyber-Bullying and Online Predators.  The safety of your teen is important!  Get informed and take control.  Click here.