Walking the Path Together

Using an innovative crime-prevention approach, Eagle Feather Workers in five on-reserve women's shelters in Alberta provide one-on-one support to First Nations children and their families who have lived with violence.   
The Guide:  Walk Proud, Dance Proud:  Footprints on a Healing Journey 
Walking the Path Together Tools:  Appreciative Inquiry
Walking the Path Together Tools:  Danger Assessment 
Evaluation Report - Phases I & II
Social Return on Investment Case Study: Phase I
Business Case 

ACWS Children's Project:  Phase I 

Women’s shelters and shelter-related programming provide an opportunity to intervene with children who have experienced family violence early on, before trauma impacts become significant and irreparable. The Children’s Project, phase I, helped support the development, integration, and evaluation of promising child support practices in women’s shelters and sheltering organizations across Alberta. 
Phase I Report 
Phase I Curriculum 


Research Trends and Implications of Practice: The State of Alberta's Children

In this report, ACWS investigates the state of Alberta’s children, framed within the larger context of the Canadian environment.  This report confirms our belief that international instruments are an important foundation upon which to evaluate Canada’s care for children.
PowerPoint Presentation

Domestic Violence:  Child, Custody, Access and Recommendations for Reform

Prepared after the tragic death of Cole Harder, this ACWS submission to the provincial government highlights an opportunity for the government to be a leader in the creation of safe visitation opportunities, stressing that the safety of children and the custodial parent’s needs to be the overriding consideration in any program of court ordered visits.

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Identifying Potential for Collaboration: Comparing and Contrasting the Service Delivery Needs of Clients of Women’s Shelters with Clients of Sexual Assault Centres in Alberta

Written for: Alberta Association of Sexual Assault Centres (AASAC) & Alberta Council of Women’s Shelters (ACWS) By Sarah Fotheringham, September 1, 2006


Shelters, Child & Family Services Protocol

This guide is designed for local women's shelters and Child and Family Services Authorities to assist in the development and update of their local protocols.  It is the product of the joint working group on family violence with representatives from Alberta Council of Women's Shelters, local women's shelters, Child and Family Services Authorities and department representatives.

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Danger Assessment

Keeping Women Alive: Assessing the Danger

The Danger Assessment tool (Dr. Jacquelyn Campbell),  was originally developed to empower women at risk with information that reduced the likelihood of further exposure to her risk of femicide. It consists of a calendar to assist in recall and 20 weighted questions designed to measure risk in an abusive relationship. ACWS completed a research project on the application of the Danger Assessment in Women’s Shelters.
Questionnaire Results 
Danger Assessment website 

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Older Adults

Abuse of Older Adults: Guidelines for Developing Coordinated Community Response Models

This project is part of ACWS’ ongoing effort to promote and disseminate knowledge and research on the prevention and intervention in the abuse of older adults.
Literature and Stakeholder Review

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On-Reserve Shelters

Moving Forward! Planning for Self-Determination

The Alberta Council of Women’s Shelters (ACWS), incorporated in 1983, investigated whether parity existed between On-Reserve and provincially funded shelters in 2005.  At this time, the five existing On-Reserve Shelters received a total of $1.05 million less than they would have received as provincially funded shelters.  This report examined 2010-11 provincial and INAC funding levels for shelters and,
while the estimates made for provincial shelters may be somewhat inflated, an obvious gap still exists. 
INAC 2006 Johnston Funding Methodology report 

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Province of Alberta

An Opportunity to Create Safer Workplaces and Empower Survivors of Violence

A brief discussing the renewal of Alberta's Occupational Health and Safety System. 


Improving the Fiscal Picture for Women, Children & Seniors leaving Abuse

Brief prepared for the Alberta Minister of Finance, August 2015. 


Measuring Progress: After the Roundtable

Report assesses how Alberta measures up with respect to international conventions and uses the recommendations coming out of the Premier’s Roundtable and the Women’s Shelter Program Review as indicators to assist in measuring improvements that have been made from a shelter perspective.


Premiers Roundtable on Family Violence and Bullying: Finding Solutions Together

2004 Province of Alberta report from a comprehensive province-wide roundtable process on family violence and bullying. The process involved a broad cross section of Albertans including victims of family violence and bullying, experts, community organizations, Aboriginal peoples, and interested Albertans. The result of these extensive discussions was the development of a Framework for Action. This report  sets out key areas for action and highlights some important steps to be taken.

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Safety From Domestic Violence Initiative

Reports, Briefs and Summaries

Briefly, Alberta Justice and the Solicitor General have worked to address the issue of domestic violence through its policing initiatives, victim services, community corrections, prosecution services, civil protection services and specialized domestic violence courts.  While these efforts as well as the efforts of other government agencies and community partners have made a difference in keeping women safe, a significant number of women continue to call the police, flee to women's shelters, or are injured or killed by their abusive partners.  Alberta Justice and Solicitor General initiated this project recognizing the need for further evidence informed practices and evolving collaboration between shelters, police, other government agencies and key stakeholders.

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Second-Stage Shelters

A Safe Path Home: Solving Homelessness and Domestic Violence in Alberta

This 2017 report provides a high level overview of the full second-stage report (Building informed service delivery in second-stage shelters) and provides practical recommendations that government can use to better support women and children who have fallen homeless due to domestic violence. 


Second-Stage Shelter Report:  Building Informed Service Delivery in Second-Stage Shelters

This 2017 Project Report compiles research and analyzes data collected by participating Second-Stage Shelters across Alberta. 


Second-Stage Shelter Project:  Transitioning from Domestic Violence to Stability 

Project report for the Canadian Women's Foundation on the ACWS Second-stage Shelter Project, October 2014. 


Second-Stage Shelters: Closing the Gap—A Practical Guide for Communities

Second-stage shelters provide safe, transitional housing with client-centered, supportive programs for six months or more. They give a woman the necessary time to begin healing from the wounds of an abusive relationship, to find counseling, a job or educational opportunity.  They provide wrap-around services and a safe home for her and her children.  This guide offers step-by-step assistance for communities that want to introduce a second-stage shelter.

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Strength in Numbers: A Ten-Year Trend Analysis of Women's Shelters in Alberta  

A report based on ten years of aggregated data from Alberta member domestic violence shelters.  


Practical Frameworks for Change: Supporting Women and Children in Alberta Emergency Shelters

ACWS and eight member shelters conceived and implemented the Practical Frameworks for Change project, introducing and evaluating promising practices learned at the conference to better support women in areas of Safety, Health and Culture. Participating shelters contributed their expertise, time and ingenuity to ensure successful project implementation over a two year period.

ACWS Practical Frameworks for Change High Level Results and Process Summary
PowerPoint from 2nd World Conference Practical Frameworks for Change


Women's Emergency Shelter Program Review

In January 2006, Alberta Children's Services initiated a review of the Women's Emergency Shelter Program. The intent of this review, completed in June 2006, was to understand the issues, strengths and opportunities facing Alberta's women's emergency shelters, and to propose recommendations to strengthen shelters, their partnerships and the program as a whole.

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Alberta Men’s Attitudes about Violence Against Women

ACWS originally commissioned this ground-breaking survey from Leger Marketing in 2012, of a survey of 1,000 Alberta men from all around the province.  ACWS and Leger Marketing and the White Ribbon Campaign worked together to inform the Gender Equity Score used as a benchmark for attitudes, informed by a similar Australian survey.  ACWS commissioned the study again with the help of regional partners in 2016 (with a sample size of 1,478) and the results show a subtle, yet statistically valid, positive shift in men's understanding of issues related to gender-based violence.  But there is much work yet to do...


Leger Marketing Report on Violence in the Workplace

Leger Marketing was contracted by Alberta Council of Women’s Shelters to measure several aspects concerning Violence in the Workplace and Family Violence that Impacts the Workplace. The survey was conducted with 800 Albertans, including 300 in Edmonton and surrounding areas, 300 Calgary and surrounding areas, and 200 in other areas of Alberta.


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