Boyle McCauley News

Since 1979 • October 2020 • Circulation 5000

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Walking for Women and Family Safety – Update

Janis Irwin (right) joined Joanne to walk on August 25. Ingrid Crowther

While walking every day since June 1, I have learned a lot about a central part of our neighbourhood. First, that Caboto Park is a beautiful and quiet but busy place to meet others. The trees provide wonderful shade, and the grass is used by many to have a picnic lunch, meet friends, contemplate, and relax. It is an invaluable and appreciated piece of shared land, which we are so lucky to have in the middle of our neighbourhood.

Next, my walk every day for 80-plus days was to hopefully raise awareness about family violence and the need for safety for women and families going through this horrible experience. As a survivor, I know how scary and upsetting violence can be. My heart goes out to women and families going through this.

Walking with my rescue dogs was also a good way for me to take time to think about how I managed to survive. I thrived, raising my daughters as a single parent, working at good jobs, teaching, and completing Master’s and Doctoral degrees.

Finally, I wanted to show that you can survive and thrive in spite of family violence. The Alberta Council of Women’s Shelters is also there to help and provide counselling on next steps and temporary housing. The need is urgent especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Thank you to all who have donated, I hope you never have to go through this, but if you do, know there is help. To donate: ACWS.ca/donate.

Joanne lives in McCauley.

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