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Family Violence Prevention Month ends, but our support is endless

Family Violence Prevention Months ends, but our support is endless.

As we near the end of November, we are also nearing the end of Family Violence Prevention Month. While the marketing campaigns around domestic violence prevention may slow as our calendars flip to another page, our 24/7 work advocating for the people who are victims of domestic violence and coercive control is endless.

Last year more than 2,100 of the cases we assisted related to domestic violence.

Domestic violence and coercive control have profound and lasting impacts on people who are victims of this type of crime. Coercive control and violent assaults can permanently injure a person’s health, impacting their long-term quality of life, finances, relationships – their everything. This type of criminal activity has the power to impact the very fibres of our being. And the injuries are not contained by a closed door. The trauma is shared by the community, its thickness felt in the air that we breathe.

Domestic violence needs to be prevented. It needs to be stopped. People who are victims need safe assistance and support, and perpetrators need the support of the criminal justice system and appropriate professionals to change their behaviours.

For 28 years, ADVAS has assisted people who are victims of domestic violence and coercive control. Every ADVAS Advocate is trained in the best ways to provide assistance and have passed an enhanced security clearance. Whether calling us for information or help planning a safe exit, or having been referred by the RCMP or another partner – Here’s how ADVAS helps people who are the victims of domestic violence:

  • Someone once called us “benevolent ninjas”, and they might be right. While you might be fortunate enough to see us in our navy-blue jackets with yellow writing, often you won’t. When it comes to matters of safety and security, we are properly trained and take appropriate precautions. Whether we are meeting at the RCMP detachment or another safe location, there are no photos of our safe spaces. Safety is always top of mind for ADVAS Advocates.
  • We provide assistance, 24/7. We are grateful for the opportunity to answer and respond when a member of the RCMP calls at 2 am for assistance.
  • We provide assistance. And it looks like this:
    • With you, we acknowledge that you are the victim of a crime. We believe you. We understand how today feels, and how every day leading up to today feels.
    • We identify your needs – are you safe? What type of care do you need? Are your finances secure? Do you have counsel? Is there likely a court action to follow?
    • We provide information about the programs, services and organizations that can help you today and throughout your recovery from these injuries.
    • We provide referrals that will keep you safe and that will help your injuries heal.
    • We keep in contact with you for as long as you need us. Often this means coordinating information with the courts and assisting you to navigate the criminal justice system and prepare a victim impact statement.

The assistance that ADVAS Advocates provides has an immediate effect. Academic studies have proven that this type of assistance can lead to better overall outcomes in your health, finances, and successful prosecutions.

If you or someone you know is at risk of imminent harm, please call 911 immediately.

If you have questions, please call us during daytime hours from a safe location.

If you are supporting someone who has been the victim of domestic violence or coercive control, thank you. If you need help understanding how you can be the best support – reach out to us.

If you want to ensure that ADVAS Advocates can continue to meet the growing needs in our community, please make a donation today.