Grant helps Interval House reach out to women in rural areas

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

Interval House has received a two-year, $20,500 grant from the Hamilton Community Foundation to enhance its services to abused women in rural Hamilton.

The money will be used to hire outreach workers and legal counselors, to assist abused rural women.

Interval House, a Hamilton shelter for abused women and children, started a pilot project in Flamborough two years ago, to provide rural services, through Flamborough Information and Community Services. Research had shown that rural women have difficulty accessing services; they may not have transportation into the city core, or they may feel too embarrassed to reach out.

"There's a misconception that when you live in the country, that the families are all good, and these things don't happen. But that isn't the case," said Clare Freeman, Executive Director of Interval House.

The fact is that domestic abuse is hidden behind the doors of all neighbourhoods, from the inner city, to suburbia, to the countryside.

However, those in the suburban and rural regions face added challenges in finding help. Inner city women have healthcare, courts and law enforcement services at their fingertips. But for the rural regions, hospitals and courthouses are a long drive away, and it may take 45 minutes for police to respond to a call.

Poverty, another unspoken truth in rural regions, complicates the picture. A woman living in poverty may not have access to a car, said Freeman.

Interval House helps rural and suburban women from all walks of life by providing counselors and legal counsel, in rural regions. It may be in the form of a support group, which is held in rotating secret locations throughout the region. Or it may be one-on-one help.

Interval House has launched its third support group. The first two were held in Flamborough, but the third is being held in secret locations in Ancaster until December 6.

"The response to that has been overwhelming," said Freeman.

One-on-one help is also available. A phone call can dispatch an outreach worker to a location of the woman's choice, whether it's at home, church, school or a corner donut shop.

"Any location which can be confidential and safe for the woman," said Freeman.

These counselors can let women know their legal rights through the family and criminal court systems, or educate women on the emotional and psychological impacts the abuse can have on them and their children. The priority is always to build a healthy family. "We are a shelter. If there's an emergency need and the woman feels she needs to leave right away, we can accommodate that," said Freeman. "But not all women need to come into the shelter."

Instead, the counseling focuses on choices "What do they need and how can they help their family?"

To access the one-on-one service, or to join the support group, women can call Interval House at 905-387-9959, or they can call Flamborough Information and Community Services for more information or a referral, at 905-689-7880.

Grant helps Interval House reach out to women in rural areas

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

Interval House has received a two-year, $20,500 grant from the Hamilton Community Foundation to enhance its services to abused women in rural Hamilton.

The money will be used to hire outreach workers and legal counselors, to assist abused rural women.

Interval House, a Hamilton shelter for abused women and children, started a pilot project in Flamborough two years ago, to provide rural services, through Flamborough Information and Community Services. Research had shown that rural women have difficulty accessing services; they may not have transportation into the city core, or they may feel too embarrassed to reach out.

"There's a misconception that when you live in the country, that the families are all good, and these things don't happen. But that isn't the case," said Clare Freeman, Executive Director of Interval House.

The fact is that domestic abuse is hidden behind the doors of all neighbourhoods, from the inner city, to suburbia, to the countryside.

However, those in the suburban and rural regions face added challenges in finding help. Inner city women have healthcare, courts and law enforcement services at their fingertips. But for the rural regions, hospitals and courthouses are a long drive away, and it may take 45 minutes for police to respond to a call.

Poverty, another unspoken truth in rural regions, complicates the picture. A woman living in poverty may not have access to a car, said Freeman.

Interval House helps rural and suburban women from all walks of life by providing counselors and legal counsel, in rural regions. It may be in the form of a support group, which is held in rotating secret locations throughout the region. Or it may be one-on-one help.

Interval House has launched its third support group. The first two were held in Flamborough, but the third is being held in secret locations in Ancaster until December 6.

"The response to that has been overwhelming," said Freeman.

One-on-one help is also available. A phone call can dispatch an outreach worker to a location of the woman's choice, whether it's at home, church, school or a corner donut shop.

"Any location which can be confidential and safe for the woman," said Freeman.

These counselors can let women know their legal rights through the family and criminal court systems, or educate women on the emotional and psychological impacts the abuse can have on them and their children. The priority is always to build a healthy family. "We are a shelter. If there's an emergency need and the woman feels she needs to leave right away, we can accommodate that," said Freeman. "But not all women need to come into the shelter."

Instead, the counseling focuses on choices "What do they need and how can they help their family?"

To access the one-on-one service, or to join the support group, women can call Interval House at 905-387-9959, or they can call Flamborough Information and Community Services for more information or a referral, at 905-689-7880.

Grant helps Interval House reach out to women in rural areas

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

Interval House has received a two-year, $20,500 grant from the Hamilton Community Foundation to enhance its services to abused women in rural Hamilton.

The money will be used to hire outreach workers and legal counselors, to assist abused rural women.

Interval House, a Hamilton shelter for abused women and children, started a pilot project in Flamborough two years ago, to provide rural services, through Flamborough Information and Community Services. Research had shown that rural women have difficulty accessing services; they may not have transportation into the city core, or they may feel too embarrassed to reach out.

"There's a misconception that when you live in the country, that the families are all good, and these things don't happen. But that isn't the case," said Clare Freeman, Executive Director of Interval House.

The fact is that domestic abuse is hidden behind the doors of all neighbourhoods, from the inner city, to suburbia, to the countryside.

However, those in the suburban and rural regions face added challenges in finding help. Inner city women have healthcare, courts and law enforcement services at their fingertips. But for the rural regions, hospitals and courthouses are a long drive away, and it may take 45 minutes for police to respond to a call.

Poverty, another unspoken truth in rural regions, complicates the picture. A woman living in poverty may not have access to a car, said Freeman.

Interval House helps rural and suburban women from all walks of life by providing counselors and legal counsel, in rural regions. It may be in the form of a support group, which is held in rotating secret locations throughout the region. Or it may be one-on-one help.

Interval House has launched its third support group. The first two were held in Flamborough, but the third is being held in secret locations in Ancaster until December 6.

"The response to that has been overwhelming," said Freeman.

One-on-one help is also available. A phone call can dispatch an outreach worker to a location of the woman's choice, whether it's at home, church, school or a corner donut shop.

"Any location which can be confidential and safe for the woman," said Freeman.

These counselors can let women know their legal rights through the family and criminal court systems, or educate women on the emotional and psychological impacts the abuse can have on them and their children. The priority is always to build a healthy family. "We are a shelter. If there's an emergency need and the woman feels she needs to leave right away, we can accommodate that," said Freeman. "But not all women need to come into the shelter."

Instead, the counseling focuses on choices "What do they need and how can they help their family?"

To access the one-on-one service, or to join the support group, women can call Interval House at 905-387-9959, or they can call Flamborough Information and Community Services for more information or a referral, at 905-689-7880.