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2020-21 Annuals and Financials

Calgary, AB - This holiday season may look different for most but for some women and children, it will be even harder especially if it is their first Christmas living in a shelter after leaving their family home due to domestic violence. Many mothers and their children still miss their homes and some family members, but Discovery House makes holidays extra special.

“It was very hard to be there over the holidays. We had left our pets, our friends, our neighbours and our home, but it was safer, and I know it would have been extremely dangerous to still be living in our old home. I knew that I could never go back and that no matter how hard it was, I had to stay for myself and my children,” said Alison, a former resident at the Discovery House shelter. “Discovery House became a haven and a sanctuary, but it took a while. The counsellors were amazing and always there for support.”

Discovery House not only provides secure, long-term housing for women and their children leaving domestic violence, but also provides mental health care for both the mother and the child as support with their recovery from violence into independence. The organization operates a childcare development centre that uses trauma-informed approaches so that families can heal and prevent the cycle of domestic violence from repeating.

"The holidays are always a difficult time for the women and children we support. The increased isolation because of the COVID-19 pandemic, makes it even harder. However, the shelter teams make it very special and the mothers and children get the support they need including gifts, gift cards and a festive ambience around the shelter" says Leslie Hill, Executive Director for Discovery House.

“Not everyone celebrates Christmas, but the mental health clinicians at Discovery House offer extra support for women and their children as needed at this nostalgic and sentimental time of year,” says Leslie Hill.

The annual Gift of Hope fundraising campaign supports the work Discovery House does with women and children affected by domestic violence. Discovery House was recently recognized as a Top Women’s Charity by Charity Intelligence and received a 5/5-star rating. Donors can feel confident that their donations are making a big impact.

How To Help

Visit discoveryhouse.ca/donate to donate today.

Discovery House Contact:  

To interview Leslie Hill or to speak with Alison, a former client of Discover House, please contact
Iboro Edem, Communications Specialist  
403-998-4914   
iedem@discoveryhouse.ca 

About Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society

Discovery House is a non-profit providing a continuum of care to women and their children leaving domestic violence. The organization offers transitional, longer-term, safe housing for women and children to call home while they begin rebuilding their lives. Discovery House provides mothers access to counselling, support, and programs to ensure they never return to abusive partners and prevent the cycle from repeating.  

Download the media release

Gift of Hope Campaign runs from December 1 to December 31st

Calgary, AB – Discovery House has launched its month-long Gift of Hope fundraising campaign to support programs and services for over 600 women and their children leaving domestic violence. Instead of gifts or stocking stuffers, Discovery House is encouraging people to give the Gift of Hope this holiday season. This act of generosity will help change the lives of hundreds of women and their children fleeing domestic violence.

Domestic violence does not discriminate – it affects women and children of all socio-economic backgrounds and ethnicities, and unfortunately it is on the rise.

"The holidays are always a difficult time for the women and children we support. With increased isolation because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many women have not had the opportunity to leave and have experienced more significant violence," says Leslie Hill, Executive Director for Discovery House. "Your support is a gift of hope for women and children in our community who are leaving domestic violence, and your act of generosity will change their lives. Discovery House was recently recognized as a Top Women’s Charity by Charity Intelligence and received a 5/5-star rating. Donors can feel confident that their donations are making a big impact.”

Double your impact and help Discovery House end the traumatic cycle of domestic violence for women and their children.

The Auxilium Foundation has generously offered to match all Gift of Hope donations dollar-for-dollar once Discovery House raises $100,000. That means that when they hit $100,000, the Auxilium Foundation will match the total funds raised dollar-for-dollar.

Let's give the Gift of Hope this holiday season. Visit discoveryhouse.ca/donate to donate today. Together, we can break the cycle and stop domestic violence from echoing in future generations.

About Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society  

Discovery House is a non-profit providing a continuum of care to women and their children leaving domestic violence. We facilitate and offer transitional, longer-term, safe housing for women and children to call home while they begin rebuilding their lives. We provide mothers access to counselling, support, and programs to ensure they never return to abusive partners. We work directly with children, to mitigate the effects of trauma and prevent the cycle from repeating. To learn more or donate, visit www.discoveryhouse.ca

Discovery House Contact:  
Iboro Edem, Communications Specialist  
403-998-4914   
iedem@discoveryhouse.ca 

Download the media release

Where To Turn – Knowing where to turn when risks of domestic violence are identified can stop it from happening 

November 1st , 2021 

Calgary AB - Discovery House has launched its month long Where To Turn campaign in collaboration with the Calgary Domestic Violence Collective (CDVC), to raise awareness of family violence and the supports and resources available to families affected. November is Family Violence Prevention Month in Alberta and Discovery House wants to use this opportunity to raise critical awareness around domestic violence.  

Domestic Violence does not discriminate, it affects people of all income brackets, gender, ages, sexuality and ethnicity. Identifying signs of risk and knowing where to turn could help prevent domestic violence from escalating.  If you notice someone seems anxious when their partner is around or shows signs of fear like shaking and trembling after a phone call with their partner, even though there are no visible signs of physical injury, these may indicate that they are in an abusive relationship. Have a chat with them and let them know where to turn for help.

Call 911 if you or someone you know is in immediate danger. Call The Family Violence Info Line on 310-1818, which is available toll-free, 24 hours a day, chat on the Family Violence Info Line Chat available 8am -8pm daily or contact Discovery House directly if you suspect you may be at risk or are experiencing domestic violence in order to access supports and resources available.  

For mothers and their children who are living with the agony of domestic violence, the past 20 months have been unbearable. Because of increased isolation and fewer opportunities to get outside of the home, many women have not had the opportunity to leave and have experienced more significant violence. Knowing where to turn to for help is critical. Women can turn to Discovery House to start the journey of turning their lives around,” says Leslie Hill, Executive Director for Discovery House.

Discovery House offers supports and resources to families affected in order to prevent their situation from getting worse. They provide a range of care for women and their children leaving domestic violence from transitional housing and critical trauma-informed services to enable women and children recover from their trauma, rebuild their lives and be equipped to live independently, free from domestic violence.  This work prevents the cycle of domestic violence from repeating with the next generation.

About Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society  

Discovery House is a non-profit providing a continuum of care to women and their children leaving domestic violence. We facilitate and offer transitional, longer-term, safe housing for women and children to call home while they begin rebuilding their lives. We provide mothers access to counselling, support and programs to ensure they never return to abusive partners. We work directly with children, to mitigate the effects of trauma and prevent the cycle from repeating. To learn more or donate, visit discoveryhouse.ca. 

Discovery House Contact:  

Iboro Edem, Communications Specialist  

403-998-4914   

iedem@discoveryhouse.ca 

Download the Where To Turn Media Release

Discovery House Launches Harvest Table – A Safe Space For Women And Children To Build Healing Connections and Address Food Insecurity


October 15th, 2021, Calgary, AB - Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society has launched Harvest Table, a space intended to further support families rebuilding their lives following domestic violence as they heal and regain their independence. The space aims to address food insecurity, social isolation, and the adverse effects of domestic violence by bringing together women and children who have experienced domestic violence in a communal space where they can prepare nourishing meals together while building healing connections. 
Located in the heart of the shelter, Harvest Table has a functional inviting kitchen space with open and clean workspaces and brand-new commercial grade appliances. It will facilitate socialization and create a community for mothers and children during a critical turning point in their lives. The Harvest Table will also offer life skills programming to help build independence for when the families leave Discovery House.

"It creates a wonderful opportunity for families to share about their cultures, learn from each other and move forward on their paths to wellness and resiliency," says Leslie Hill, Executive Director for Discovery House.

The space was made possible in partnership with generous organizations and individuals passionate about ending domestic violence, including The Rotary Club of Calgary Downtown, P.E.A.R.L. Foundation and The Calgary Foundation. “Initiatives like the Harvest Table help Canadians and Calgarians by creating a safe space where women and their families can get together to learn, to share, to grow, to gain skills. It really provides them with the social capital and the expertise that they are going to need when they leave Discovery House,” said Jason Bates, Vice President, Grants and Community Initiatives at Calgary Foundation.


Our lead in-kind partner, [IN] SIDE ]OUT[ Design Studio, designed the space and coordinated the renovation, leveraging their suppliers and manufacturers to support this project. “Support from partners has been phenomenal!” said Carrie Gould-Gretsinger, Director of Design at [IN] SIDE ]OUT[ Design Studio, “We reached out to people that we normally do business with, and they openly encouraged and engaged us.” Despite the uncertainty of the pandemic, over 30 businesses gave generously to make this project a reality. Tom Loszchuk, a millwork specialist and founder of Trades Guild, an initiative to help at risk youth learn life skills, led the implementation of the project. Tom was featured as an "Inspired Albertan" for his involvement.

About Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society Discovery House is a non-profit providing a continuum of care to women and their children leaving domestic violence. We facilitate and offer transitional, longer-term, safe housing for women and children to call home while they begin rebuilding their lives. We provide mothers access to counselling, support and programs to ensure they never return to abusive partners. We work directly with children, to mitigate the effects of trauma and prevent the cycle from repeating. To learn more or donate, visit discoveryhouse.ca.

Discovery House Contact:

Iboro Edem, Communications Specialist

403-998-4914

iedem@discoveryhouse.ca

Download the Harvest Table Launch Media Release

Every Woman Strong – Invest in a Future Free of Domestic Violence

Calgary, March 1, 2021 - Discovery House has launched its month-long Every Woman Strong fundraising and awareness campaign to help end the traumatic cycle of domestic abuse for women and their children. The campaign aims to raise funds for Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society, a second-stage shelter that provides care for women and their children fleeing domestic violence in Calgary, Alberta.

“To commemorate International Women’s Day, Discovery House wants to highlight the plight of hundreds of Calgarian women facing domestic violence. Alberta has the third highest rate of domestic violence in the country,” stated Leslie Hill, Executive Director, Discovery House. “We provide supportive housing to more than 600 women and their children fleeing domestic violence annually. We also turn away just as many due to lack of capacity and resources. Further exacerbated by COVID-19's forced isolation, domestic violence rates are on the rise. Offering support to survivors is the first step, but we must also look to prevention to support the next generation.”

Alberta women face the highest risk of domestic violence in decades, with that number rising even higher during times of isolation, financial loss, and emotional distress.

“Our second-stage shelter provides wrap-around support and a continuum of prevention and intervention programming that is trauma-informed, evidence-based, and client-centred. Throughout the past 10 years, only 3% of families have returned to Discovery House, demonstrating the efficacy of our program model,” said Harold Pliszka, Manager Programs and Clinical Services, Discovery House.

“The Every Woman Strong campaign recognizes and celebrates all Calgarian women,” said Brittany Beatty, Interim Director of Development, Discovery House. “We hope, especially, that it helps end the stigma around domestic violence and the women and their children who seek and have sought shelter from it. The funds raised from the campaign will ensure that we continue leading the charge in helping women and children in dangerous and violent situations find refuge during this pandemic.”

For further information or to make a financial donation to Discovery House, please visit www.discoveryhouse.ca/everywomanstrong for more details.

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For interview requests, please contact Preeha Lashari, Senior Communications Specialist at 403-998-4914 or plashari@discoveryhouse.ca

ABOUT DISCOVERY HOUSE

Discovery House is a social-profit organization providing a continuum of care to women and their children fleeing domestic violence. We facilitate transitional housing, offering longer-term, safe places for women and children to call home while they begin rebuilding their lives. We provide mothers access to counselling, support and programs to ensure they never return to abusive partners. We work directly with children, to mitigate the effects of trauma and prevent the cycle from repeating. To learn more or donate, visit discoveryhouse.ca.

ABOUT INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY

March 8 is a global celebration and recognition of the social, political, cultural, and economic achievements of women and girls. It also serves to highlight the challenges faced by women and girls every day, and the work that still needs to be done. This year’s theme for International Women’s Day is Choose to Challenge.


Press-release_Every-Woman-Strong-1Download

Today is Giving Tuesday Now, a new global day of giving and unity in an emergency response to the needs created by COVID-19. Discovery House is also launching a month-long fundraising campaign for the Discovery House COVID-19 Emergency Fund used to help women and children escape and recover from domestic violence during these challenging times.

“By donating on Giving Tuesday Now we can help our community’s most vulnerable who are struggling through this pandemic,” says Monique Auffrey, CEO of Discovery House. " In the next month, Discovery House will be running a month-long COVID-19 Emergency Campaign to bring public awareness to the increase in domestic violence during isolation. In Alberta, we are seeing a rise in family violence related to our economic downturn and job layoffs, now further exacerbated by COVID-19. We can’t ignore the dangerous situation the women and children in our community are now facing.”

For some women, isolation at home is traumatic, dangerous, even deadly.

“We know through research and experience that in times of isolation, financial loss and emotional distress, domestic violence increases both in numbers and intensity," says Esther Elder, Senior Director of Programs and Operations. “Through the support of Giving Tuesday Now and our COVID-19 Emergency Fund, we can continue to provide supportive housing and trauma-informed programming to our clients, so they start to rebuild their lives.”

For the last forty years, each year Discovery House has helped approximately 600 women and families escape family violence. They provide transitional housing and wrap-around support so that their clients can heal from their trauma, achieve self-sufficiency, and break the cycle of domestic violence.

For further information or to make a financial donation to Discovery House, please visit www.discoveryhouse.ca/covid-19 for more details.

Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society is pleased to announce the appointment of Leslie Hill as Executive Director effective January 4, 2021.

Leslie has a deep passion for Discovery House and the domestic violence sector. She brings over 17 years of experience in the non-profit sector, serving populations experiencing vulnerabilities such as homelessness, substance use, mental health issues and domestic violence.

An accomplished leader, Leslie was most recently Executive Director of HIV Community Link Society. Previously, she held progressively senior roles in organizations including the Calgary Homeless Foundation and the Canadian Mental Health Association. Additionally, she was Manager of Discovery House’s Community Housing Program between 2012–2013.

A natural team player and collaborator, Leslie has a strong track record of capacity building, leadership, strategic planning, financial oversight and community relations. The Board look forward to welcoming Leslie to Discovery House as we advance toward our goal of a society free of family violence.

Unmask Domestic Violence – by Unmasking Domestic violence we can end the traumatic cycle for women and children.

On November 1 2020, Discovery House launched its month-long Unmask Domestic Violence fundraising campaign to help end the traumatic cycle of Domestic Abuse for women and children. The campaign aims to raise money for Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society, a social profit organization that provides care for women and their children fleeing domestic violence in Calgary, Alberta. Offering supportive and trauma-informed transitional housing and critical services, Discovery House helps women and children recover from their trauma, rebuild their lives, and be equipped to live independently free from domestic violence.

“November is Family Violence Prevention Month in Alberta, and Discovery House wants to use this opportunity to raise critical awareness around domestic violence. Each year, we support more than 600 women and their children, said Esther Elder, Interim CEO of Discovery House. “Our second-stage shelter provides wrap-around support and a continuum of prevention and intervention programming that is trauma-informed, evidence-based, and client-centred. Throughout the past 10 years, only 3% of families have ever returned to Discovery House demonstrating the efficacy of our program model.”

“29% of Canadian women experience intimate partner violence in their lifetime, and Alberta has the third highest rate of domestic violence in the country”, stated Kate Price, Director of Fund Development, Discovery House. “It is a harrowing fact that 70% of all spousal violence cases are unreported. We hope that by Unmasking Domestic Violence we can end the stigma around it. The funds raised from the campaign will ensure that we continue being responsive to the increasing demand for our services.”

For further information or to make a financial donation to Discovery House, please visit www.discoveryhouse.ca/unmask-dv for more details.

The Big Canada Run kicked off on Canada Day with 2000 runners and walkers from 14 different countries starting an 8,000 km 12-month virtual race across Canada. Teams and their supporters made donations to three charities: Greater Ottawa Habitat for Humanity, Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society of Calgary, and Operation Underground Railroad of Anaheim, California. Discovery House is honoured to be a charity of choice for this very Canadian concept.

Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society 2021 – All Rights Reserved
Charitable Registration #11882 3483 RR0001 | Alberta Societies Act Registration #50249381
Domestic Violence Ends Here
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