April 2022 Newsletter

Welcome to SSAIC’s April 2022 Newsletter. Once a month, we bring you news, updates, skills, and opportunities relating to the world of sexualized violence. As subscribers, you won’t miss a beat about what’s happening at SSAIC.

SSAIC acknowledges that we work and live on Treaty 6 Territory and the Homeland of the Métis.
We commit to working towards reconciliation and affirm our relationship with one another.

COVID-19 Updates

SSAIC is open! We are currently serving clients of sexualized violence over Zoom and telephone only and providing public education virtually. In order to keep our staff and clients safe, we will continue to operate under the current restrictions:

  • Masking
  • Physically distancing
  • Sanitization
  • Primarily utilizing telephone and Zoom counselling

If you’re really looking forward to COVID-19 being over, you’re not alone. Us too! However, the wellness of our staff and clients remains our top priority. Masking requirements will remain in our offices after March 1st, and our counselling services will continue to be provided over Zoom or telephone unless we assess that clients can not access service using that technology or require some initial face-to-face support. SSAIC will remain closed to walk-in support at this time.

We appreciate the cooperation our kind clients have consistently displayed in working with us to keep everyone healthy.

We are taking new clients and would encourage those who need our assistance to call our office during office hours and speak to one of our counsellors. Our 24-hour crisis line is fully functional and available to assist anyone who needs our help.

We have expanded our services to include more online resources for survivors. Please check out our Survivors Toolkit for additional resources and videos.

What’s New at SSAIC

Long Weekend Hours

This long weekend always brings promises of Spring and, for that, we’re so grateful! (We’re also grateful for jelly beans.)

Our office will be closed on Friday, April 15th and Monday, April 18th for the Easter weekend. We will be back on Tuesday at 9a.m. Our 24-hour crisis line will remain available all weekend if you need us.

We hope your long weekend is as sweet as a basketful of candy!

50/50 Online Raffle – Winner Announced!

Our third annual 50/50 Online Raffle was another big success! We are always humbled by the support of our community, who continue to encourage our work.

Congratulations to Trevor Robulak, the winner of our $5,530 pot, who took home $2,765! You can view our Instagram live draw here. Once again, thank-you to each and every person who purchased tickets. See you next year!

“I’m the Boss of Me” Wrap-Up

“I’m the Boss of Me,” SSAIC’s child sexual abuse education program for Grade 4 students, runs each year from mid-January to the end of March.

After wrapping up another successful season, we took our amazing volunteers out for snacks, games, and bowling (which is right up our alley)!

We’re so thankful for our partnership with the Saskatoon Public and Greater Saskatoon Catholic School Divisions, whose support and cooperation made it possible for us to safely continue delivering ITBOM during ongoing COVID-19 precautions. They fund our program each year, ensuring all students learn that abuse is never their fault and what to do if it happens to them or others. We were also fortunate to receive funding from the Community Initiatives Fund once again. It is much appreciated!

ITBOM wouldn’t have been possible without our dedicated team of 7 volunteer facilitators, our practicum student Ashton, Program Coordinator Morgan, and Program Assistant Jen. We’re grateful for their dedication and passion for this work.

A quick glance at “I’m the Boss of Me” this year:

  • We presented to 143 classrooms, our most successful season to date (17 more than last year)
  • We were able to reach 3,556 children in our ten weeks of shows
  • We have presented our puppet show to almost 35,000 Grade 4 students since 2007!

We would also like to extend our gratitude to the classroom teachers who hosted our virtual show, the school counsellors who provided additional support to teachers and students, attended and/or organized the presentations and, of course, the students who engaged so thoughtfully with the material and keep us on our toes with their questions, comments, and feedback. Can’t wait to see you next year!

Exciting News from Our Education Team!

Stay tuned for exciting updates about our new Grade 8 sexualized violence educational program, “No Is a Full Sentence.”

NIAFS was created in partnership with Saskatoon Public Schools and Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools and will be piloted in both divisions in the coming weeks.

We’ve been hard at work developing this program and can’t wait to bring it to the students! It will focus on themes of healthy relationships, boundaries, and consent.

Sexualized Violence Awareness Week

Saskatchewan will recognize SVAW during the week of May 15th – 21st. This year, SSAIC will be joining forces with Regina and Area Sexual Assault Centre and Battlefords and Area Sexual Assault Centre in a province-wide collaborative effort to raise awareness about sexualized violence. Our campaign will encourage people to #ChooseToSee some of the many ways we (consciously or subconsciously) protect ourselves from sexualized violence.

Learning & Entertainment

Supporting Survivors of Sexualized Violence Training

Supporting Survivors of Sexualized Violence Training (SST) is an interactive training program created by SSAIC, designed to train anyone and everyone to receive disclosures and support survivors in a compassionate and trauma-informed way.

Join us for an upcoming session of SST to learn tangible skills for supporting someone who discloses sexualized violence, as well as the impacts of rape culture and our own unconscious biases.

*Only 4 remaining training dates in 2022!

Click on any of the following links to register yourself for SST:

Full-Day Training:

September 7th, 2022 (9am – 4pm)

December 8th, 2022 (9am – 4pm)

Half-Day Training:

May 11th, 2022 (9am – 12 noon)

October 25th, 2022 (1:30pm – 4:30pm)

Educational Presentations Available

SSAIC’s Education Team has many presentations available to the public on a variety of topics related to sexualized violence. Our presentations are a good fit for client groups, staff in-services, professional development opportunities, and post-secondary students. Any of the following are available upon request:

  • Understanding Sexualized Violence: Our 101 Course
  • Consent 101
  • Child Sexual Abuse Information Seminar
  • Being a Strong Ally to Survivors
  • Exploring the Impacts of Sexualized Violence
  • SSAIC’s Services
  • Deconstructing Rape Culture
  • Demystifying the Reporting Process of Sexualized Violence

Contact us at info@ssaic.ca to inquire about a presentation for your group!
(Limited capacity available.)

SSAIC Staff Recommends

The Sleeping Giant Awakens: Genocide, Indian Residential Schools, and the Challenge of Conciliation (Book)

Author David B. MacDonald challenges other settler-Canadians to assess their privileged positions in a settler-dominated society and critically evaluate Canadian identity. Drawing upon the insights of Indigenous scholars, The Sleeping Giant Awakens is grounded in academic literature but uses language that is easily accessible to a general audience. MacDonald encourages readers to engage in thoughtful action to achieve (re)conciliation and suggests a foundation on which to build a new approach to our settler role.

I think this book is such a useful resource! It provides a helpful introduction to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Final Report, for those who haven’t read it yet. It’s emotionally engaging, impactful, and will place readers behind a critical lens before they explore the TRC’s (controlled and limited) documentation of historical events and Survivor stories, as all Canadians are encouraged to do. -Jen

Mental Health Crisis in Men – Allan Kehler (TedTalk)
(TW: suicidal ideation and child sexual abuse)

Allan is a mental health advocate, motivational speaker, and survivor of sexualized violence. The bestselling author recently gifted us with a lovely TedTalk addressing suicide, violence, and mental health in men, dedicating it to his recently lost friend. Allan approaches all of his work from such a sincere place of hurt, healing, and possibility, which all shines through in everything he does.

Check out his TedTalk, Mental Health Crisis in Men, or purchase any of his books for a closer look into Allan’s work and life.  -Morgan

@bentlily (Instagram)

Samantha Reynolds has been writing a poem every day since 2011 as a way to trick herself into being present in the little moments that would otherwise surely be missed.

At a dull corporate event years ago, Samantha noticed one lily bent over in the centrepiece of flowers. The awareness of that small detail lit her right up—the world around her came back into focus. Samantha goes by the pen name “bentlily” as a daily reminder to chase down her joy by noticing the ordinary details of her life.

Follow her on Instagram for daily reminders to notice the beauty all around you! -Debbie

New Blog Post

You may have heard of Emily before, or you may have seen her face (or body) before and not known her name. Regardless of whether you know of her or not, her first collection of essays about femininity, power, ownership, sexuality, consent, and abuse is one of the best things we’ve read in a loooooooong time.

Check out our newest blog post, “Emily Ratajkowski on Taking Back her Body,” at ssaic.ca/blog, and be sure to subscribe to our mailing list so you don’t miss a thing.

Sexualized Violence in the News

MP makes motion to promote Bystander Awareness and Intervention Training, The Record (Fort Saskatchewan)

A new motion making its way through the House of Commons aims to empower Canadians to intervene in situations where someone is being victimized. 

Sherwood Park-Fort Saskatchewan MP Garnett Genuis made the Bystander Awareness and Intervention Training motion on Tuesday, calling for the government to work with other levels of government, stakeholders, academia, and civil society organizations to promote bystander awareness training.  

Bystander intervention is a key tool for combating sexual violence, hate crimes and other forms of criminal activity. Read more… 

UN warns of rape and sexual violence against women and children in Ukraine, CNN

The United Nations has called for an independent investigation into the increasing reports of sexual violence and trafficking of Ukrainian women and children during the Russian invasion of the country.

“The combination of mass displacement with the large presence of conscripts and mercenaries, and the brutality displayed against Ukrainian civilians, has raised all red flags,” said Sima Bahous, executive director of UN Women.

Reports of sexual violence and other war crimes by Russian troops have been emerging from areas retaken by Ukrainian forces. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the images from Bucha were evidence not of the “random act of a rogue unit,” but a “deliberate campaign to kill, to torture, to rape, to commit atrocities.” Read more…

Human Rights Commission joins call for public inquiry on sexual violence in prisons, CTV News

The Canadian Human Rights Commission says Canada needs an independent public inquiry to address serious issues of sexual violence and coercion in federal prisons for women. The commission is “deeply concerned” by reports about sexual coercion, violence, and abuse in federal correctional institutions and a lack of action to address the problem, said Chief Commissioner Marie-Claude Landry.

“A prison sentence deprives a person of their right to liberty, but it does not deprive them of their right to security. Sexual coercion and violence in prison is unacceptable and criminal,” Landry said, adding that Correctional Service Canada is obliged to protect and support the victims of these crimes. Read more…

Ways to Give to SSAIC

Looking for ways to give to SSAIC? Click any of the options below to get started!

  • Becoming a recurring donor. This is the most helpful kind of donation we can receive, as it helps us consistently plan for the future with reliable donations monthly or annually. All donations are greatly appreciated.
  • Bring your recyclables to SARCAN. By using the code “I believe you” at the Drop-n-Go stations or at the register, you can donate your recycling funds straight to SSAIC and protect the environment all at once!
  • Shop our survivor-themed merchandise. Our online store is stocked with survivor phrase t-shirts, sweatshirts, and mugs – order yours straight to your door, or come by our office downtown for contactless pickup.
  • Fundraise on our behalf. COVID-19 has impacted us all, and SSAIC is relying on our community supporters now more than ever. If you’re interested in raising money on our behalf, get in contact with our office to discuss opportunities!

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