If you don’t know what domestic violence looks like, nursing students from Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) can show you — and give you the tools to stop it and support victims.
The students have developed a Community Champion toolkit to help citizens recognize signs of abuse so its victims can get the assistance they need. The kits will be unveiled next month at Deltassist’s Inspiring Voices, Inspiring Change symposium in Delta, where attendees will also learn how to use them.
“It is our sincere hope that we can prevent the escalation of domestic violence in our community by teaching community members how to recognize abuse, intervene safely and support victims,” said Dr. Balbir Gurm, KPU nursing faculty.
Students developed the kits under Gurm’s supervision, with additional direction from Dr. Jen Marchbank, a member of the Network to Eliminate Violence in Relationships (NEVR), and Corina Carol, manager of counselling services at DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society, and the Provincial Office of Domestic Violence.
Organized by Deltassist, the Inspiring Voices, Inspiring Change symposium June 2 is an opportunity for survivors to share their experiences dealing with abuse, and for service providers to identify successful strategies to combat domestic violence as well as gaps in services, said Julie Chadwick, acting executive director of Deltassist.
Deltassist is a member NEVR and founder of Delta Opposes Violence Everywhere (DOVE). The symposium was made possible with funding from the Department of Justice.
Domestic violence does not discriminate by age, gender, or ethnicity. At least 25 per cent of women in Canada have been seriously affected by domestic violence. Domestic violence claims one life per week in Canada, notes Gurm.
Inspiring Voices, Inspiring Change is a free public event, and members of the community are invited to attend. It runs from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the North Delta Public Safety Building, 11375 84th Ave., North Delta. Call Deltassist at 604-594-3455 by May 20 to register.