Battered Women’s Support Services (BWSS) Crisis line remains open, providing emotional support to women experiencing gender-based domestic violence and/or uncertainty during these difficult times.
Since mandated social distancing and isolation, BWSS extended their Crisis Line hours to 24/7. And calls are coming in, actually there has been a 300% increase. BWSS also has made it possible for women to text or email if it is not safe to call.
Safety means different things in the midst of COVID-19. Social distancing isn’t always the safest step when co-quarantining with an abusive partner. External factors that add stress and financial strain can negatively impact women experiencing domestic violence and create circumstances where their safety is further compromised.
Who we are hearing from on our crisis line? 1. Women out of abusive relationships 2. Women currently in abusive relationships 3. Concerned neighbours 4. Concerned coworkers 5. Children and youth who are concerned about their mother and themselves and their siblings
We are in a unique and uncomfortable position. Our calls have increased, and we cannot let women down. We rely heavily on donors and shoppers at our two My Sister’s Closet stores. However, due to inevitable health and safety concerns, we had to temporarily shut our doors which shuts down a third of our sources of funding.
At this time, we need financial support to: • Increase staffing to provide additional support and extended hours for the crisis line • Purchase additional talk minutes and internet data on cell phone plans for women to stay connected to the crisis line, counsellors, and emergency services • Translate COVID-19 information as it relates to domestic violence and other information about the virus for women’s safety into different languages • Food cards and food delivery for women - Transportation costs for women feeling to a safe place
If you have the capacity to make a donation, we thank you for considering us during these uncertain times. We would be happy to accept your donations online, or you can connect with us on the phone by calling 778-996-5451.
If you or you know someone who can use our services, • Call 604-687-1867 or toll-free at 1-855-687-1868 • Email us at email@example.com • Text 604-652-1867