Wrapped in Courage Pancake Breakfast
On Tuesday November 4th from 7:00am to 9:00am at Downtown Market Square in St. Catharines, Gillian’s Place alongside the Niagara Regional Police hosted a Pancake Breakfast to launch the Wrapped in Courage Purple Scarf Campaign. A ten dollar donation included a “wrapped in courage” purple scarf, pancakes and sausages provided by the Niagara College Bench on the Go food truck with coffee and juice provided by Tim Hortons. Live music by local girl’s band Garden of Eden, as well as speakers at 8am were there to entertain. Everyone was encouraged to bring their family, friends and co-workers and altogether over 300 people attended the inaugural event. For those who couldn't attend the breakfast, scarves are available across Niagara for the month of November at local TD branches.
Now in its second year, shelters across the province are engaging the community to become more aware of the often overlooked issue of woman abuse in Ontario. November is Woman Abuse Awareness Month. The purple scarf is a symbol of the courage it takes woman leave her abuser. However, the courage of the woman is not enough. It takes the strength of an entire community to end violence against women.
On average 20-30 women a year are murdered in the province of Ontario alone. It is the number two reason for calls to the emergency police services. Additionally, it overwhelmingly affects children in the areas of: focus at school; relationships with peers and adults; increased risk of participating in high risk behaviours such as, substance abuse; and increased risk of anxiety and depression.
During the month of November, everyone across Ontario is invited to participate in showing abused women across the province that they have our support. The United Nations has designated November 25th (the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women) as the first of 16 days of Action to eliminate Violence Against Women across the world. We are asking Ontarians to wear our purple scarf especially on these days to show your courage to abused women and their children that their community supports them and they are not alone.
In 2012, Gillian’s Place commemorated its 35th year of service to women experiencing domestic violence and abuse – a service that has improved the lives of over 20,000 members of our community.