- What do I tell my kids?
We recommend not giving your children too much information. Children do not have the knowledge or understanding to take on adult matters. Often telling your children that you and daddy aren’t going to live together anymore but that you both still love them very much is enough for a child. If the child is older then saying to them that mom and dad aren’t getting along and that its time that they live apart is usually enough. Remember that your children are living in the same environment as you are, so more often then not they know everything that has been going on, they just need reassurance.
- Visits aren’t going well, my child is refusing to go but has to, what do I do?
You can safety plan with your child, explain to them what they can do to keep themselves safe if situations are going badly. If they disclose abuse you can call CAS and report what they are telling you. If you feel strongly that the situation needs more intervention you can look into returning to court and you can contact the Office of the Children’s Lawyer and find out how they can help.
- How do I apply for housing?
You can contact Housing directly or you can come in and speak with a Crisis Worker who will guide you through the process of applying for rent geared to income housing.
- How do I access childcare once I get my own place?
There is a subsidy you can apply for through Child Care Algoma that may be able to help you pay for childcare if you qualify. If you are on Ontario Works they may be able to assist you as well.
- Does WIC have long term counselling?
WIC does offer long-term counselling for women no longer residing in the shelter. You need to call and speak with a Crisis Worker about your situation and a referral will be completed for you.
- How do I get a lawyer?
Call or come in and speak with a Crisis Worker. Legal Aide is available for those who qualify, the Crisis Workers can help you find out if you would qualify and how to navigate the process.
- How do I pay for a lawyer if I don’t qualify for legal aide?
There are 2hr Free Legal forms available to help people who do not qualify for Legal Aide to get legal information. There is also a Family Legal Information Clinic (FLIC) you can attend at the Court House where you can speak with a Legal Aide worker who can help you.
- How do I get ahold of my Ontario Works worker?
Often getting through to your Ontario Works worker can be frustrating, if you feel you need some advocacy you can come in and a Crisis Worker can advocate on your behalf.
- How do I deal with my children’s behaviours, they didn’t act like this at home
Often children act out what they are feeling or what they have witnessed. If your child is confused and frustrated with what’s going on they will often act out in public or at school so that someone will ask them what’s going on, especially if they don’t feel safe asking for help. Children who cannot express in words what they are feeling or feel like no one is listening to them will often act out in destructive or violent ways, they are asking for help in the only way they know how. The best way to find out what is going on is to ask them and really listen to what they are saying, if your child is not old enough to speak then you need to consider the environment they are living in and ask yourself if that’s the problem.
- What do I do with my pets?
There is a program set up to assist women fleeing abusive relationships that need to find shelter for their pets. Please let us know when you call or come in to talk and we can help.
- Do I need an appointment to come talk to someone?
There are always two crisis counsellors working 24 hrs. a day ready and available to speak with you.
- What should I bring with me to the shelter?
- Medication (for you and your children)
- Identification (for you and your children)
- Legal documents
- Financial documents
- Is there a cost to staying at WIC?
Please know that your stay at WIC is completely at no cost to you.
- Is there somewhere to do my laundry?
WIC is set up with a complete laundry room for the use of residents. We also provide laundry detergent for your use.
- Questions re Family Court process? Please see: http://lukesplace.ca/resources/#faq