Haven Society successfully applied for a grant from the Civil Forfeiture’s Office of the Ministry of Justice to offer training and education to front line service providers throughout the province who work with women who have been or are currently at risk of experiencing violence.

Creating Safe Haven is a two day workshop that integrates current knowledge from diverse theoretical perspectives to provide a comprehensive framework and practical strategies to support individuals and organizations to increase awareness, sensitivity and responsiveness to the unique needs of women who have been impacted by recent or historical violence or abuse.

The purpose of the training is to increase understanding of the dynamics of trauma and interpersonal violence, provide practical tools and strategies to create safety for clients, and identify and foster existing strengths, resilience and resistance. The training is also specifically designed to foster community support, connections and collaboration throughout all sectors and at all levels of service delivery thus enhancing the efficacy and flow of a coordinated community response for all victims of violence.

The training was received with great interest, with nineteen communities requesting to host the event. In order to reach diverse regions of the province we selected Surrey on the mainland, Penticton in the Okanagan, Haida Gwaii in the North and Nanaimo on the Island.

Two trainings have already been completed and feedback has been extremely positive. Over 70 community members attended and some of the comments included; “I learned new ways and options to help clients” “As a probation officer, I now have more empathy for victims of violence,” “It was awesome to meet so many people and know where to turn for services for our clients” “presenters modeled openness, non judgment and respectful communication very well” “awesome presentation and excellent information”.

In pre and post assessments participants clearly demonstrated increased knowledge, understanding and confidence in their ability to effectively support survivors of violence.

Inger and Karen

Inger Frombach is a Registered Clinical Counsellor with over 20 years of experience in the counselling field.  She has worked as a women’s counsellor at Haven Society for almost ten years  while also maintaining a private counselling practice.  Inger has a Masters degree and training in mindfulness based stress reduction, EMDR, self regulation therapy and equine guided therapy.

Karen Max has worked in the anti-violence field for over 20 years.  She brings a range of experience as a women’s counsellor, transition house worker, children who witness abuse counsellor, shelter manager, university instructor and counsellor trainer.  She is currently the Coordinator of the Women’s Counselling Program at Haven Society, has a Masters degree and training in EMDR and Sensorimotor Psychotherapy.

For more information on Creating a Safe Haven, please call 250-756-2452.