a mother and grandmother play lovingly with a young boy

A letter to our community

When Angela* called our crisis line earlier this year, she knew she only had a short window of time. He’d be back within the hour.

Her husband checked every call and text she made. It was the first time he’d left the house since losing his job. 

I listened carefully while she explained everything that was happening for her and her small child and we worked quickly to create a plan for safety, specific to her needs. And then she had to hang up.

YWCA’s Transition Support Team provides resources, safety planning information, and options specific to each woman’s situation. We help women in an abuse crisis, needing emergency shelter. Women planning for their safety while living at home or preparing to leave. Women facing extreme risks because they’ve recently managed to escape.

We listen carefully as she describes her complex experiences: ending a relationship that she’s poured her energy into. Heartbreak and pain as she releases the hope she held for a life of stability, a life of respect and happiness.

And we’re here to shine a light on what is true: That despite everything she’s been told, she’s worthy of so much more. That in no way was this outcome her fault. That all she’s gone through has affected every aspect of her life. And, that in letting go and taking brave steps forward, she’s breaking cycles of abuse.

I don’t always hear how the story turns out, or whether she’s okay. But this time, weeks later, Angela* called to say thank you:

“Because of you, I saw that there are people in my life who still love me and want to help, no matter what.

You showed me ways I could stay safe until I was ready to take the next step. I wanted you to know what a difference you made for me. Thank you for everything!”

Angela* and her son are living with a family friend until she can find a place of their own. They’re safe and rebuilding connections with people she thought she’d lost – thanks to the support of someone like you.

So today, I’m the one saying thank you. Thank you for supporting the YWCA’s work so that women like Angela* can safely escape a life of violence and fear.

Please take this opportunity to help other women experiencing gender-based violence by giving a donation today. Your support makes all the difference!

With much gratitude,

YWCA Transition Support Worker

P.S. – Your support today is vitally important to women in crisis. Please remind a woman in our community that she is not alone.

*Angela is a real woman who recently found support at YWCA Peterborough Haliburton during the COVID-19 pandemic. Her name and details have been changed to protect her safety.