Nov 25th marks the International Day For the Elimination of Violence Against Women. The theme this year is “Orange the World: Fund, Respond, Prevent, Collect!” There are many amazing organizations in Truro and Colchester County that are doing serious work at reducing violence against women, girls and gender-diverse people in our community by funding support, responding to violence with direct action, preventing violence through education and collecting data on how violence impacts everyone in Colchester.
The Colchester Sexual Assault Centre has a 31-year history in the Town of Truro, supporting those in Colchester County and beyond. For the past 26 years, they have been providing free counselling services to anyone impacted by sexual violence. Receiving no long-term core funding from the provincial government, a large part of how they are funded, like many community-based non-profits, is by the generosity they receive from our community through their fundraising initiatives and their funding partners.
They have a Community Resource Centre located at 35 Commercial Street with a dedicated team of Counselling Therapists who offer free individual counselling to those impacted by trauma and sexual violence. In addition to their free counselling services, they also provide education, outreach, awareness, advocacy, and their Aftercare: Journey program which was developed in response to the quadrupling of case numbers over the course of the pandemic.
Their services are offered to everyone, regardless of gender identity, and staff have undergone ally and cultural sensitivity training to better understand and support members of marginalized communities in the area. Over the past year, their Counselling Therapists have provided nearly 1,400 hours of individual counselling, either in-person or by telephone and virtual conferencing. They have developed a vast network of community and referral partnerships to link clients up with other existing programs and services in our communities. These partnerships are vital in ensuring that the community works together to end sexual and gender-based violence.
A great example of these community partnerships is coming up on December 6th ! The Colchester Sexual Assault Centre will be partnering with The Lotus Centre, Third Place Transition House, ElevateHER, the Truro Pride Society and Mi’kmaw Family Healing Centre on the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. The community is invited to stop by The Lotus Centre from 9AM-4PM on December 6th at 67 Dominion Street where people can gather in their gazebo and fill out a tag in memory of, or in honour of a woman who lost her/their life to violence, or to write a personal wish for change for all women going forward. Visitors can also sit for a while and spend some quiet time reflecting on the undeniable impacts violence against women has had on each and everyone of us. At noon hour from 12PM-1PM, there will also be presentations from the partner organizations who will also have information available, as we collectively work together to bring much needed awareness to sexual violence in our communities.
Leading up to the event, Third Place Transition House and the Colchester Sexual Assault Centre will both have tables set-up at the Truro Farmers Market on December 3rd so be sure to visit them to learn more about their programs and services.
To help fund their programs and services, and to make events like this possible, The Colchester Sexual Assault Centre is currently running their Reverse 50/50 Lottery fundraiser! When you purchase a ticket, you will directly support the free programs and services they offer. Your $25 purchase will enter you in for 52 weekly draws – with 39 prizes generously donated by local businesses, 12 monthly cash draws of $500 and the Grand Prize of $6,500! Purchase your tickets by December 27th by visiting their Community Resource Centre at 35 Commercial Street on the 4th floor or by calling 902.897.4366. Credit, debit, cash or cheque payment options are available.
The Reverse 50/50 Lottery tickets are a perfect way to support a local community-based non-profit this holiday season and make great:
- Christmas gifts that you can slip into our holiday greeting cards
- Stocking stuffers for that person who has everything
- Teacher gifts
- Customer appreciation gifts
- Volunteer and Board recognition gifts
- Staff Christmas gifts
Visit https://www.colchestersac.ca/lottery/ for more information, prize list and complete contest rules. You can also watch for them at the Truro Farmers Market on December 3rd.