What Can We Do for You?
The Northern Women's Centre was founded in the
spring of 1973, following an event called the Northern Women's
Conference, which was organized by local women's groups. Over the years, countless projects, initiatives and
organizations have been born through the organizing and lobbying efforts
of feminists at the Northern Women's Centre. As we complete our
29th year of existence, our daily focus remains on three critical issues
for women: violence, poverty and access to decision makers (power).
In addition, we continue to be committed to address issues of racism,
homophobia, and all forms of economic and gender discrimination.
Our role in supporting individual women mainly
involves procuring or ensuring access to various existing services,
systems or decision makers. While providing this support, we
endeavour to place an individual woman's concern in a larger context, to
increase her awareness that other women are experiencing the same
- Information and Referral: Staff and
volunteers provide referrals to crisis centres, counselling agencies,
legal or health related services and a variety of community
organizations. We also provide contact information for
politicians and other decision makers, and for many out of town
organizations. As well, information on general women's issues
and current legislation is available.
- Individual Support and Advocacy:
Individual women regularly request support, information and advice to
deal with personal issues such as a violent spouse, custody or access
problems, sexual harassment or assault, conflict with Social Services,
Human Rights complaints, and various other social, economic and
systemic difficulties. We listen to their concerns, provide
information about the issues, agencies and systems involved and help
them develop some strategy.
- Public Education and Community Development:
The Centre houses a large resource library dedicated to women's issues
and accessible to the public. Our regular newsletter, Hotflash,
acts as an education and outreach tool to our membership. Staff
is available to speak at schools or other organizations, and we often
bring in speakers on various topics of interest to women when funding
is available. We respond to the media on current issues that
affect women, and sometimes organize workshops and conferences.
We hold an annual evening of celebration in March, in honour of
International Women's Day.
- Community Involvement: NWC works
cooperatively with many other local organizations on a broad range of
social justice issues. A representative from the centre
participates on a number of inter agency committees and coalition
including the Coordinating Committee Against Family Violence, Women's
Economic Development Coalition, the Anti-Workfare Coalition etc.
we are also active members of the Ontario Association of Women's
- Facilities: Our office space includes a
comfortable and informal setting for women and their children who drop
in to chat or use our resources, and we also make our meetings space
and office equipment available to individuals or women's groups. We also have a VCR, TV and a comfortable couch available to view our videos.
* The Centre understands feminism to mean: Women working together, changing the structures, the processes and the people who oppress them while empowering all women in their personal life, in the community and society as a whole to exemplify mutual respect and the capabilities and rights of all women.