Education for Judges?


Manitoba’s provincial government recently decided to not make any changes to the training judges are required to attend regarding sexual assault law. This is in spite of other provinces, like Ontario, enforcing training for all new judges (some would like the training to be mandated to all existing judges).

Sexual assault stands out as statistically unique in Canada’s courts, and this is not just a Canadian problem. According to the most recent General Social Survey, only one in twenty victims of sexual assault perpetrated by a stranger are reported to law enforcement, compared to one in three other crimes resulting in victimization as defined by the survey. We know that more than half of all sexual assaults are committed by partners or acquaintances, and these are even less likely to be reported to law enforcement.

All of that is part of sexual assault cases having the very lowest conviction rate of all violent crimes tried in Canada. Only 0.3% of sexual assault incidences result in a conviction. In fact, of the cases that actually end up before a judge, fewer of them result in a conviction than any other violent crime.

Victims of sexual assault also report higher rates of PTSD and disruption in their lives than victims of other crimes. One in four victims of sexual assault experience difficulty carrying out regular daily activities after an assault. And when all is said and done, one in three women and one in six men will have an experience of sexualized violence.

Let’s sum this all up by saying three things:

  1. Sexual assault happens a lot.
  2. The vast majority of people who commit sexual assault face no consequences for their actions.
  3. A big chunk of our population is left reeling because of sexual assault.

Maybe we could ALL use some more education about sexual assault and consent and how to prevent this shockingly common tragedy. This data should inspire a revolution in the public conversation about gender, sex, and relationships. If it’s money that we care about, the cost of prevention can’t be anywhere as high as the cost of sexual assault. Educational programs like our SADI program should be expanded and brought to every school!  I bet that would include some future judges!

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Technology and Social Media Workshops

Save the date!! On September 25, 2017,Survivor’s Hope in partnership with the North East Regional Sexual Exploitation Team, will be hosting Technology and Social Media workshops led by Val Caldwell. Val is an expert on youth online activity and will provide tools and information relevant to keeping kids safe from online sexual exploitation and sextortion.

Service Provider workshop 1:00-3:30 (RSVP to Stephanie) PDF poster

Parents and community members workshop 6:30-9:00 PDF poster

SunGro Centre Sunova Room, Beausejour

Contact Stephanie or call our office (204-753-5353) for more information

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Trauma Informed Training During Victims Week


National Victims and Survivors of Crime Awareness Week will be May 28 to June 3 this year. In partnership with the Department of Justice Canada, Survivors Hope will host short training sessions focused on developing a Trauma Informed Response to victims and survivors of crime.

On June 1, there will be two training events. At 10:00 am, a thirty minute coffee break learning session will take place in the HEW Building multi-purpose room in Beausejour. At 2:30 pm, the same training will be presented in the Pine Falls Hospital multi-purpose room. Refreshments will be provided.

“These events are open to everyone,” said Survivor’s Hope’s Reaching Out Program Coordinator, Stephanie Klassen. “A wide range of community members benefit from knowing more about responding to victims and survivors in a trauma-informed way.”

As many as one in three women and one in six men will be victims of sexualized violence. Klassen says this means we all know someone and we come in contact with victims of sexualized violence all the time.

“Sexualized violence can be a traumatic experience that overwhelms one’s ability to cope. We can all enhance our awareness of how to help someone who feels overwhelmed by an intimately violent experience.”

National Victims and Survivors of Crime Awareness Week happens every year near the end of May. Funding for awareness raising events and materials is provided by Department of Justice Canada. Survivor’s Hope has also created a sexting awareness brochure, a trauma-informed helper brochure, and a regional resource guide, all of which will be available at the training events.

Download and print or share the Trauma Informed Responses poster for this event.

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Thank you MCSC!

MCSCDuring Sexual Assault Awareness Month, we want to thank those who make our work possible. Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre would like to thank the Manitoba Community Services Council for their financial assistance with the SARAH Program in eastern Manitoba. The support of MCSC enables us to support survivors of sexual assault. Thank you MCSC!

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Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre’s SADI Program Starting Again in September


With fall just around the corner, that means that school will be starting up again and Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre’s SADI Facilitators will be back in the classroom running the SADI Program. The SADI Program offers age-appropriate workshops in grade 6, 8, 10 and 12 classrooms in schools in the North Eastman region. The SADI Program has strong partnerships with schools within the region as the program has been running since 2004. The goal of delivering the SADI workshops is to prepare youth for strong, healthy and respectful relationships. These workshops address topics such as boundaries, healthy vs. unhealthy relationships, self-esteem, body image, ways of coping with stress, media literacy, internet safety, communication in relationships, assertive communication, gender stereotypes, respect in relationships, sexual harassment and sexual assault, consent, and dating and sexual violence.


The SADI Facilitators use interactive activities to introduce the topics to the youth and keep them engaged in the content. The workshops build off of each other throughout the year as there are several workshops delivered in each grade. While some of the topics can be sensitive for the students, SADI Facilitators create a welcoming, open environment where students can ask questions and feel supported. Students and teachers also give feedback so that the SADI Facilitators can update content or presentations as needed from year to year. The Program is guided by the learning outcomes from the Manitoba Physical Education and Health Curriculum. The SADI Program offers important information so that students can identify healthy relationships and can tell the difference between an unhealthy and an abusive relationship. Students receive appropriate resources to get help for themselves or others if they see this happening to someone they know. For more information on the SADI Program visit the Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre website at


Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre provides crisis intervention, support, and information to survivors and secondary victims of sexualized violence in eastern Manitoba. The SARAH Program provides sexual assault crisis intervention services 24/7 out of Pinawa Hospital, Beausejour District Hospital and Pine Falls Health Complex. Survivor’s Hope also runs a drop in office at the Winnipeg River Learning Centre in Powerview-Pine Falls on Mondays from 12:00 – 5:00pm where a Sexual Assault Crisis Intervention Worker is available to provide support and information. The SADI Program which works directly with students in the classroom to prepare them for strong, healthy and respectful relationships. For more information please visit the Survivor’s Hope Facebook page, website at or call 204-753- 5353.

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SARAH Program Volunteer Training


SARAH Program

Sexual Assault Recovery and Healing

Volunteering with the SARAH Program will satisfy your strong need to make a difference in your community!

SARAH is the sexual assault crisis intervention program in Eastman.

SARAH workers provide support to those affected by sexual violence:

  • We provide information to validate experiences.
  •  We provide hope as the survivor takes those first steps towards recovery.
  •  We provide support through regional hospitals, RCMP detachments and our offices in Powerview-Pine Falls and Pinawa.

We are accepting applications to support programs in Pine Falls, Pinawa, Beausejour and Selkirk. After completing the application process successful applicants will be invited to participate in sexual assault crisis intervention training.

Trainees must attend all weekend training dates listed.

October 1 & 2 9:00-5:00 (Sat & Sun) in Pinawa

October 5 & 12 6:30-9:00 (Wednesdays) in Beausejour

October 15 & 16 9:00-5:00 (Sat & Sun) in Pinawa

October 22 10:00-4:00 (Saturday) in Winnipeg

To find out more about becoming a volunteer Sexual Assault Crisis Inter-vention Worker please call 204-753-5353 or email . We will provide you with information on the SARAH Program, application process, and training requirements.

SARAH Program

Volunteer Training

Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre Inc.

Volunteer recruitment poster 2016

Volunteer Application Form 2016

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Elder Abuse Awareness Day: Abuse Disclosures

On June 15, 2016, World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) celebrates its 10th anniversary.  Started in 2006 by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse, the day is set aside to bring global awareness about the mistreatment of older persons.

Elder abuse, according to Manitoba’s chapter of WEAAD, is defined as “any act or lack of action by someone in a position of trust that harms the health or well-being of an older person.” Forms of abuse can include, but are not limited to, psychological, financial and sexual violence, as well as neglect.

In Manitoba it is estimated that between 4-10% of people over the age of 60 are victims of elder abuse.  It is also estimated that only 1-in-5 older adults disclose their experience of abuse to others, so the rates of abuse may actually be much higher.

The mistreatment of an older adult has severe consequences.  It can lead to mental health concerns, social isolation, and even premature death. Preventing elder abuse and responding to it in a timely and appropriate manner can save lives.

Being able to spot warning signs that an older adult is being abused can play an important role in helping someone seek help.  Signs that someone is being abused include:

  • Anxiety and fear
  • Social Isolation
  • Depression
  • Confiding in you about the abuse

Another layer of complexity is that for some older adults there may be a previous history of abuse.  Someone who has managed to cope in their adulthood with a traumatic past may find that it is harder to cope as an older person.  The process of aging itself, with the loss of independence and the onset of health complications, can have a significant impact on someone with a history of trauma.  Signs that someone is being affected something traumatic from their past include the same warning signs that someone is being abused: heightened anxiety or fear, depression, social isolation, and confiding in trusted ones about past abuse.

If an older adult discloses to you about past or current abuse, your response does not actually change. Talking about abuse, past or present, can be a very difficult and vulnerable process.  If someone tells you about abuse they have suffered, one of the most important things to do is to listen and believe them.

Another important action is to support the person.  Support can look like many things, but it is always good to be informed about what resources are available to a victim of violence.  If you suspect someone is in imminent need of safety, call 9-1-1.  If you are an older person who has experienced abuse, or a concerned person seeking more information, Manitoba has a Seniors Abuse Support Line that you can contact 24/7 at 1-888-896-7183.  For more information on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day you can visit their webpage,

Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre provides crisis intervention, support, and information to survivors and secondary victims of sexualized violence in north-eastern Manitoba. They run workshops in schools throughout the region that aim to prepare youth for strong, healthy, and respectful relationships. They also operate a drop-in support service on Monday afternoons in Powerview-Pine Falls. For more information, visit or call 204-753-5353.

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Survivor’s Hope Surveying Survivors, Community to Enhance Services


May 29th to June 4th, 2016 is Victims and Survivors of Crime Week in Canada. This year’s theme is The Power of our Voices.

“This is an important time to hear survivors’ stories and to look at what programming we need in our communities to support victims and survivors of crime, said Holly Parcey, Director of Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre. “By listening to survivors we can help provide services that can better help others who have been affected by crime.”

According to a one day snapshot survey conducted by Department of Justice Victim Services,  eight out of ten of the female victims that were assisted were victims of violent offences. In the same survey, almost 30% of these female victims were survivors of sexual assault. Victims and survivors of crime are not only female; seven out of ten male victims were victims of a violent offence, and 15% of the survivors received assistance relating to sexual assault. A great deal of the Canadian population is, or will be, a survivor of crime at some point in their life. A significant percentage of these crimes will be related to sexual violence.

Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre is currently looking for community feedback for a project funded in part by the Federal Department of Justice. This project looks at addressing the gaps and barriers in service provision that currently exist for survivors of sexual violence in north eastern Manitoba.

Anyone in the region is welcome to complete a community member survey which can be accessed online at For those who are survivors of any form of sexual violence, there is also a Survivor Survey accessible at Input has also been gathered from local service providers.

“Once we compile all of the feedback from service providers, community members and survivors we will then be able to determine what our region’s needs are and how to address them,” said Parcey. “We want to thank all of the service providers, community members and survivors for your feedback for our new project. Hearing directly from you ensures that we can provide the care and services you identify as most helpful for people in our region who experience sexual violence.”

For more details about the Survivor’s Hope Federal Justice project, visit

Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre provides crisis intervention, support, and information to survivors and secondary victims of sexualized violence in eastern Manitoba. The SARAH Program provides sexual assault crisis intervention services 24/7 out of Pinawa Hospital, Beausejour District Hospital and Pine Falls Health Complex. Survivor’s Hope also runs a drop in office at the Winnipeg River Learning Centre in Powerview-Pine Falls on Mondays from 12:00 – 5:00pm where a Sexual Assault Crisis Intervention Worker is available to provide support and information. They also run the SADI program which works directly with students in the classroom to prepare them for strong, healthy and respectful relationships. For more information please visit the Survivor’s Hope Facebook page, website at or call 204-753- 5353.

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Pinawa Foundation Fundraiser

Friends of Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre!

The Pinawa Foundation has an opportunity for you! The Foundation happily supports local groups in their fundraising efforts and they are offering local community groups the opportunity to participate in a fundraising event through the month of May.

Any donations made to the Pinawa Foundation in the month of May for Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre will be stretched by 20% by the Pinawa Foundation to a maximum of $1,000 per group.  For every $100 donated to the organization the Foundation will add $20 to the donation.  Donations of $25 and over to the Pinawa Foundation will be issued a charitable donation receipt.

Donations can be made payable to “The Pinawa Foundation” designated for Survivor’s Hope Crisis Centre.

Please share this information with those you feel would financially support the programming offered by Survivor’s Hope  Crisis Centre.  Information on our programs can be found here on our website on the SADI, SARAH, and Reaching Out pages. You can also follow us on facebook.

For more information about The Pinawa Foundation visit

Thank you to the Pinawa Foundation and to you for your support!

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Sexual Violence Myths Getting Good Press?

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and there are two recent news stories that raise some very important points about sexual violence.

It is not often that we hear satisfying stories of closure and justice in regards to sexual violence. These types of crimes are fraught with influence from cultural myths and misunderstandings about what is happening when sexual violence occurs.

We have heard a Manitoba judge say that sexual assault is actually just a “clumsy Don Juan” trying to get lucky and accidentally assaulting someone. It is a myth that sexual assault is rooted in the desire for sex.

We have watched the Ghomeshi trial in which every action the survivors took after the assaults was given far more weight than the actual assaults. It is a myth that all sexual assault survivors will act in the same manner if they were really sexually assaulted.

Two recent stories have highlighted more myths about sexual violence.

There is currently a lawsuit against the Mennonite Brethren Church of Manitoba that alleges the church created an atmosphere that made it easy for a pastor to lure, groom, and sexually assault a child in his congregation.

This lawsuit highlights myths about sexual violence by shattering the usual myths. This lawsuit is trying to get to the bottom of why sexual violence happens and the conditions that promote silencing victims. In a word – power.

It is not often that we see legal action taken against the structures that promote inequality or injustice, but this lawsuit is attempting to do just that. It’s not that churches promote inequality and injustice, but when people, particularly children, are told that the church leader is “chosen by God,” that leader has a lot of power and authority which may be easily abused. More safeguards are required in these settings to hold leaders accountable and encourage anyone who may be a victim to trust their own experience and feel safe to speak up.

There are many groups, inside and outside faith communities, working on and discussing these problems. Especially relevant to the faith community involved in this lawsuit is the organization Our Stories Untold which is working to end the silence around sexual violence in churches.

Another story that has recently highlighted myths by breaking them came out of a denied conviction appeal. A teacher was convicted in 2013 of sexually assaulting a female student by repeatedly groping her at school. He tried to appeal his sentence on the grounds that the victim had not come forward soon enough; she had not reported the first incident on the first day it took place.

The Court responded in a refreshingly informed way by saying that the convict’s argument was not evidence that the assaults never took place. The Court acknowledged that the power the teacher had over the student played a significant role in the assaults and in the student’s response, which likely included some form of Sexual Assault Trauma.

At its core, sexual violence is about power, not sex. Sexual contact is simply the weapon of choice. Sexual violence comes from a disregard for consent which essentially entails dehumanizing someone, using them as an object so the perpetrator feels powerful and gets what they want.

Too often we hear myths about sexual violence mistaken for truth. Sexual Assault Awareness Month is a time to become better informed, debunk myths, and create safer spaces for everyone in our communities.

For more information on a variety of topics related to sexual violence, visit the Links page of our website.

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