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Take one of these ideas or make up your own but do something to help end violence against women and children*

Speak Up! 1     Create an Opportunity!     Lobby for Change!

  • If you know a man who abuses his wife—through cruel words, name calling, controlling her actions—advise him that his behaviour is abusive and that he can learn other ways to communicate with his partner (but only do this if it is safe for you and his wife).

  • If you know a man who hits or beats a woman, tell him his behaviour is against the law (but only do this if it is safe for you and the woman).

  • If you see a woman who is being abused, talk to her about it. Listen to her and show her that you believe her. Find out about the resources in your community for women and children who are being abused, and tell her about them. Let her know she is not alone.

  • If you are a man, volunteer to work in a men's support group. Offer yourself as a friend or volunteer at a shelter and spend time with children who can use a positive role model. Offer to spend an evening demonstrating, sharing or teaching a skill you have with residents at the transition house. Skills such as story-telling, meditation, crafts, art, painting, cooking, dancing, sewing, reflexology, skin care, hair dressing, make-up, bead work, knitting, crocheting, budgeting, aromatherapy, massage, mime, clowning, yoga, Tai Chi, and spirituality (elder or clergy) are usually welcome.

  • Write a letter to the editor of your newspaper expressing your views about ending violence.


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Create an opportunity … 1

in your church, at your service club, in your book club, or with your community group.

  • Invite a survivor to tell her story to your group. Learn about what can be done to help other women be safe.

  • obtain a copy of Family Violence in a Patriarchal Culture: A Challenge to our Way of Living, published by the Canadian Council on Social Development and the Church Council on Justice and Corrections. (Cost: $20.00 Cdn.) Organize a series of workshops in your church to use this manual. Develop a resource/display table where members of your group can obtain information about the issue of family violence and sour-ces of help.

  • Suggest that your book club select 2 books on violence against women and children, then discuss them. To find titles, you could search "Violence Against Women" at the Amazon on-line bookstore.

  • Contact your local transition house and ask how your group might "learn and help." Offer to spend an evening demonstrating, sharing or teaching a skill you have with residents at the transition house. Skills such as story-telling, meditation, crafts, art, painting, cooking, dancing, sewing, reflexology, skin care, hair dressing, make-up, bead work, knitting, crocheting, budgeting, aromatherapy, massage, mime, clowning, yoga, Tai Chi, and spirituality (elder or clergy) are usually welcome.

  • December 6 is National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. Conduct your own special project: hold a poster campaign against violence, set up resource tables with information on wife assault in key locations in your community, or invite community speakers to your meeting

  • Organize a discussion on respect, stereotypes, sexism, violence, or teen dating violence. Become a peer leader.

  • Organize a "Brown bag" luncheon at your workplace. Show a video from the National Film Board's Violence Against Women Collection* (English, Français) (see also the National Clearinghouse on Family Violence). Have a discussion about it afterwards. (We recommend a video that is accompanied by a facilitator's guide).
    *Many public libraries have collections of NFB and/or National Clearinghouse videos.
  • Get a local men's group to co-sponsor a community awareness session for men.


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Lobby for change 1

  • Phone your local shelter or sexual assault centre and find out about the issues they are working on. Become informed about these issues, then write a letter in support of the needed changes.

  • Lobby your local government representative (Canadian MP's and Saskatchewan MLA's). Get him or her to support adequate funding to cover basic needs and provide opportunities to survivors of wife assault for personal growth, job training and education, to promote self-sufficiency and integration into the community.

  • Lobby to ensure that your Board of Education provides training for key people in the system, to help them identify and assist kids who witness violence.

  • Obtain a copy of the "Women's Safety Audit Resource Kit", available from METRAC, 158 Spadina Road, Toronto, Ontario M5R 2T8. Lobby your municipality to include safety issues in their official plan and to develop a task force on violence against women.

  • Ask your family doctor to display posters and pamphlets on different kinds of abuse.

  • Tell everyone you know (family, friends, doctors, dentists, vets, lawyers, neighbours, government representatives, etc.) about the Hot Peach Pages (and in Saskatchewan, tell them about the Abuse Help Lines page near the front of every DirectWest telephone book).

*adapted from VIS-À-VIS, the National Newsletter on Family Violence (out-of print)

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