About ACWS

We Believe

In empowerment for women and equal worth of all persons.

In strength of numbers together for a common mission.

That the issues of violence and abuse are the responsibility of the entire community including legal, social and political structures. 


We believe in a world free from violence and abuse.


To support our members and work together to end domestic violence and abuse.


ACWS is an ambassador for women’s shelters in Alberta, providing support to members and leadership to leverage the collective knowledge: informing solutions to end domestic violence.

And we know that domestic violence can end.

Informed by our many initiatives, action-based research projects and data collection, ACWS develops leading-edge tools for shelters and calls the public to take action against domestic violence.  Creating synergies around the globe, we are a founding member of both the global and Canadian networks of women’s shelters.

Because we know we are stronger together. 

Every day, 41 ACWS members across the province do remarkable work.  Shelters save lives, strengthen families and improve communities. 


ACWS: Working Together to End Domestic Violence.

Board Strategic Plan Report 2009-2012

ACWS’s Ethical/ Moral Framework

ACWS Position Statements

Statement of Principles and Values

ACWS Charitable Registration: #118780634RR0001



At ACWS, we value: 

Women's Equality and Empowerment

Imbalance in power relations excludes women from decision-making across all aspects of our society.  With a focus on women’s strengths we promote their rights, needs, and the value of their lived experience. We seek to create women-centred service provision which promotes equality, improves outcomes for women (and their families), reduces long-term costs and builds stronger communities.


We recognize and pro-actively affirm the dignity of all, regardless of heritage, education, beliefs, race, religion, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, physical or mental capabilities, or income.  We value the welcoming spaces created by ACWS members so women, children and seniors fleeing violence may heal from their trauma without attempts by abusers, and others, to impose their values, customs or beliefs. 


By working together, in service of and cooperation with our members, to achieve our vision weincrease understanding and effectiveness, open access to resources, and maximize the impact of our voice in changing society. 


We are stewards of the many resourcesgifted tousby women, of past, present and future generations.  We commit to appropriate management of the financial resources and sustainability of ACWS and the support of our members while also caring for the earth by restoring and protecting it. 


Strategic Goals 

Strategic Goal 1: We work collectively

ACWS leads and supports membership-based initiatives which mobilize stakeholders to work collectively to end domestic violence and abuse.


Strategic Goal 2: We change systems

ACWS champions changes to systems, policies and practices to improve services for women, children and seniors experiencing violence and abuse. 


Strategic Goal 3: We share knowledge 

ACWS, in concert with our members, shares and develops knowledge, resources and connections to steadily advance responses to domestic violence and abuse.  


Strategic Goal 4: We are changing the conversation 

ACWS takes action to transform the beliefs, attitudes and behaviors that perpetuate violence against women and girls through increased public awareness and conversation.