The R+R program is an award-winning violence prevention program for youth aged 12 to 18 years old, and is delivered by community-based adult facilitators in school classrooms in School District #64 (Southern Gulf Islands) and in other school districts in British Columbia. High school students are trained and mentored to co-facilitate the R+R workshops and to become leaders in youth violence prevention among their peers and younger students. Each year for the past twelve years, approximately 500 students have participated in R+R workshops in SD#64.
SWOVA provides facilitation training to deliver the Respectful Relationships (R+R) program and the skills learned can also be used in many areas of life and work. Participants can cover the material at his or her own pace (within a 6-week period of time), have individual coaching support and group calls, and practice facilitation skills within their own community. All from the comfort of one’s home computer.
In the Pass It On project, high school young women provide structured group and individual mentorship for grade 8 girls throughout the school year. The mentorship builds relationships that will support the girls at this critical age as they prepare to enter high school. They form relationships that assist them in their immediate lives and also make their transition to high school easier. The issues being addressed are health and safety for girls and young women, providing support for grade 8 girls, and encouraging youth leadership.
The health and wellness and needs of boys and young men in our community is important to us. The project addresses these through a series of roundtable discussions and input from boys and young men in the community to determine their needs for supporting them as they navigate their way into adulthood. We glean their ideas on ways to provide positive opportunities for them in the community and ways for them to take on leadership and mentorship roles. We enlist the guidance of boys and young men to develop an action plan to address their needs. The project might include mental health support to address depression and self-esteem. We work in partnership with appropriate community services to make boys and young men aware of what is available to them to support their health and wellness. A Boys Council (trans and non-binary inclusive) comprised of boys, young men and adult men, guides the activities of the project.
In 2011, we received funding from Justice Canada to revise our R+R curricula for Aboriginal Students, which resulted in creating the Aboriginal R+R program. We used our data to identify the specific needs and experiences of Aboriginal Youth and to revise our R+R curricula to best support that community. Working in partnership with the Musqueam Indian Band, we trained facilitators from their community who then delivered the R+R workshops to Aboriginal youth. Developing an on-line training course was also part of this project (See R+R Facilitator Training/ On-Line Training Page)
SWOVA is founded on a commitment to research and evaluation as essential tools in the development and continuing improvement of our violence prevention programs and initiatives. See evaluation reports on all our projects and programs by clicking on the title of this section.
This project focused on respect and safety in sexual health for young women and men in high school. We delivered workshops to all grade 11 students and held a Sexual Health Fair which was open to all students at Gulf Islands Secondary School. Unfortunately, this exciting project is no longer funded.
The leadership program brings together a group of young women who share a desire to make a difference in their world and want to act individually and with others to bring about positive change. We help those girls build on the skills they already possess as well as develop new ones and harness the power of young women and girls.
This is a summer camp opportunity for girls living in School District #64 to come together and develop and increase their leadership capacity. The camp runs during the summer break and provide a safe, supportive, stable environment with an adult facilitator to meet weekly with young women in the community. Each weekly meeting focuses on a theme and may include activities, guest speakers, exercises, and/or movies. Weekly meetings support the development of strong girls and young women through empowerment, inspiration, creativity, discovery, leadership, personal growth, and authenticity. There is also be a focus on providing opportunity for young women to increase their capacity and participation in civic, political and community life.
Peace Kids is SWOVA’s project to take Respectful Relationships education into the elementary school and was piloted in 2013/14. The Peace Kids curricula, provides engaging skill building sessions that increase dialogue about peace and conflict at the personal and community level. Peace Kids addresses bullying and systemic violence occurring with younger students, and offers social emotional learning (SEL) skills to increase personal and collective community health, safety and well-being.
This project will conduct a review of community knowledge for prevention of and intervention in sexual assault for youth and adults living on the six Gulf Islands. During it’s three year mandate it will form an inter-agency outreach, response and collaboration resource network to help inform the expansion of services available for those who may experience sexual violence.
Since 2014, SWOVA marks International Women’s Day, March 8th, by hosting a celebration dinner to honour women in our community.