RSVP with Dianne at 592-2927 ext. 222 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This week is a dedicated to recognition of volunteers in Canada. At Victoria Women’s Transition House we honour each of the volunteers who have devoted many hours to support women and children who face the difficult issue of abuse in their lives. Our volunteers play with children, answer the crisis line, cook and bake, clean and organize, speak in the community, bake, pick up and sort donations, offer their specialized skills such as yoga or massage. Last year volunteers contributed about 130 volunteers contributed over 7500 hours.
Our volunteers go through an extensive training program – to quote one volunteer “I learned so much about this provocative issue and enjoyed the deep discussions and activities!” If you are interested in joining our volunteer team, call Dianne at 592-2927 ext 222 or see the volunteer section of the website transitionhouse.net
Our Children Who Witness Abuse (CWWA) program playroom was in desperate need of an extreme makeover. With chipped paint, and looking drabby and sad the room, and the counselors were calling for help. As I am sure you can understand, the environment of this counselling space has an impact on the many children who enter it.
Answering the call came: Ruffell and Brown Interiors, Power to Be, Island Floor Centre, Harbour City Kitchen and Cloverdale Paint-Cedar Hill. With their combined support, and the work of other volunteers and staff the room has transformed to a brighter yet calm, safe and functional space.
In 2012 we are now providing an even more welcoming, comfortable, engaging, clean, and safe-feeling space for our many little clients!
Volunteering is a regular part of my life. I feel I must always be doing something to contribute positively to other people’s lives……
Week 3 and 4 of Volunteer training focused on the impact of abuse on children.
The group brainstormed ingredients of effective parenting:
• Active listening
• Shows interest can care
• Set boundaries – say no
• Appropriately affectionate
• Non-judgmental and open
• Role model
• No favoritism – makes time for each; make each feel special and cared about
• Teach and provide guidance
• Demonstrate gender equality – balance of power
• Balance friendly and parent
• Have knowledge and wisdom
We discussed how abuse can impact parenting.
In week 4 we met with the shelter children’s counselor and discussed strategies for dealing with behavior issues. Points raised from the wisdom and experiences of the trainees:
• Speak to the child in private – avoid public embarrassment
• Use I messages (I need you to …) vs. You Messages (You can’t…)
• Give time to allow the child to deescalate
• Learn about the child – find out what works for them and be flexible
• Emphasis on positive reinforcement – articulate what you see when something good is happening
• Try Diversion or distraction – change activities
• Provide choices
• Encourage empathy – how would you feel if … was done to you?
• Provide a choice or logical consequences
Plesae see our Curriculum and Resources page to see our newly added publication “Housing Thousands of Women”.
An amazing group of new volunteers started training for the in-house and crisis line this week. At our first session we learned about each other, about Victoria Women’s Transition House, viewed It’s Not Like I Hit Her, did a simulation excercise to walk in the shoes of women trying to leave abuse, and had a great discussion!
Here are a few things that our wonderful volunteers do to replensih their energy: Yoga; Run; Swim; Journal; Listen to music; Sail; Bike; Take a bath; Get a massage; Be with their pets; Sit by a fire; Dance; Sing in a choir; Be in nature; Talk; Spiritual work; Hike and Read.
Books that were recommended for reading: Three Cups of Tea; Into Thin Air; Half the Sky; What is the What?; The Onion Girl; The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo; Eat, Pray, Love; and The Power of Intention.
For more information on how to become a volunteer at Transition House please follow the link below: