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Survivors of violence take control of their careers

Overcoming trauma can be a long and complicated journey, but it’s not one you have to take on your own.                                                                                

Violence, abuse and bullying can impact a person’s life in many ways and cause long-lasting effects such as depression, decreased self-confidence and low self-esteem. The social and economic impacts are also huge. According to the World Health Organization (2017), survivors of violence and/or abuse may suffer isolation, inability to work, loss of wages, lack of participation in regular activities and limited ability to care for themselves and their children.

The YWCA LEADS program helped me with finding my voice, finding things that maybe I would have thought before as downfalls, to help me grow. It changed my life and how I look at certain things. It taught me that I don't have to listen to what others have said about me in abusive relationships, and that I'm not alone. – R.V.

In 2015, the YWCA WorkBC Learning Employment and Development Skills (LEADS) program was created as a response to the barriers that survivors of violence and abuse face when looking for or returning to employment. To date, the program has helped dozens of women to recognize, understand and overcome the impact of abuse and regain the confidence needed to reintegrate into the workforce and become economically independent.

We asked Titi Adebanjo, LEADS Program Coordinator, why this program is unique:

A strong belief I had in designing LEADS was for it to be the kind of program that treats people as capable and as experts in their own lives; creating an environment that allows an individual to feel safe and free to learn, while taking a pathway to discover new talents or affirm their transferable skills. A program where women can utilize what they have learned in order to find meaningful work and where each pathway would lead a step closer to wellness, increasing employability and strengthening confidence.

The LEADS program is offered at YWCA WorkBC Vancouver Westside, Vancouver South, North Vancouver (in partnership with Family Services of Greater Vancouver and MOSAIC) and has expanded to Maple Ridge thanks to a partnership with Douglas College.

For more information on the LEADS program contact leads@ywcavan.org | 778 877 1533


The LEADS program is funded by the Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia.

 

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