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What is Gender-based Violence?

Gender-based violence (GBV) refers to any form of violence that is committed against someone because of their gender identity, gender expression, or perceived gender. It is any form of abuse, assault or harassment that can be linked back to societal bias or unequal power dynamics surrounding gender.

Forms of GBV include sexual violence, discrimination, harassment, and physical, economic, and emotional (psychological) abuse. GBV, as a term, also recognizes violence that is directed at LGBTQQI2S (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, and two-spirit) and non-binary peoples because of their gender or gender expression.

The Countdown pebble mosaic monuments honour the resilience of survivors of gender-based violence, and hold space to remember and mourn for those who have not survived.

To learn more about GBV, visit the Canadian Women's Foundation's website:



2022 Renfrew County Inquest

The Renfrew County Inquest Public Art Response is connected to, yet distinct from, the Countdown Public Art Project. In the summer of 2021, JoAnne Brooks of Ending Violence Against Women Renfrew County and the Women’s Sexual Assault Centre of Renfrew County invited ReDefine Arts to devise and lead a community-engaged art response intended to run alongside a Chief Coroner of Ontario’s Inquest slated for summer 2022.


The Inquest into the triple murder of Anastasia Kuzyk, Nathalie Warmerdam, and Carol Culleton on September 22, 2015 in Renfrew County, investigated how and where systemic change could prevent such gender-based violence in the future. JoAnne knew that the Inquest would have an impact on those who had known Anastasia, Nathalie and Carol, and those who had lived through the traumatic murders in their community in 2015, and hoped a community engaged art project would provide something tangible for those impacted to respond to. The pebble mosaic monument created as part of the project was officially unveiled in Water Tower Park, Barry’s Bay, on September 22nd, 2023 - exactly 7 years following the murders.


The formal Inquest ended on June 28 with 86 recommendations by the jury - the top one being for the province to formally declare intimate partner violence an epidemic.

What Next?

On December 14, 2022: Lanark County became the first rural County to declare IPV an epidemic. On March 8th, 2023, on International Women’s Day: Ottawa followed in the footsteps of Lanark County, also passing a motion to declare IPV an epidemic. On July 20th, 2023, Toronto joined 30 other municipalities across Ontario that have declared IPV an epidemic in their jurisdictions, including Ottawa, Peel Region, Halton Region and Renfrew County.

These achievements, though hard won and celebrated, are just the beginning of a long road of work ahead towards implementing meaningful change at local, provincial, and federal levels. 

“Inquest jury recommendations are non-binding, which means the government and other entities to which recommendations are directed have no legal obligation to implement them… We need to provide the leadership to ensure that these recommendations, which have the potential to save many lives, will be implemented.”

Read the 86 Recommendations

Available on are the 86 recommendations, accessible for anyone to read and share:

Learn More About the Recommendations

Lanark County Interval House & Community Support Executive Director Erin Lee has been participating in regular radio discussions on Lake 88.1 to discuss in-depth each recommendation, one at a time, every week since September 22nd, 2022. These recorded conversations have been, and will continue to be, archived and accessible to all to listen at the following link:

Access Advocacy Toolkit

Luke’s Place has also created an Advocacy Toolkit to support organizations in initiating and sustaining advocacy work towards the implementation of the jury recommendations:

RC Inquest



Trans Lifeline is a grassroots hotline and microgrants 501(c)(3) non-profit organization offering direct emotional and financial support to trans people in crisis – for the trans community, by the trans community. To access support from a trans/non-binary peer, call 1-877-330-6366

The Canadian Centre for Men and Families offers a Domestic Abuse, Violence and Trauma Support Program for Men. They have also been authorized by Legal Aid Ontario to provide certificates for two hours of one-on-one legal aid specifically for male domestic violence victims from anywhere in Ontario. This service can be accessed at their Toronto or Ottawa Centres.

The Government of Ontario Support Services for Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Program

This program provides help for male survivors of sexual abuse, both recent and historical. The program is the first of its kind in Canada and is delivered by agencies across the province. Survivors have access to a 24-hour, multilingual, toll-free phone line for immediate crisis and referral services at 1-866-887-0015.


The National Indian Residential School Crisis Line

The National Indian Residential School Crisis Line provides 24-hour crisis support to former Indian Residential School students and their families toll-free at  1-866-925-4419.


MMIWG Crisis Line

Individuals impacted by the issue of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls are encouraged to contact the MMIWG Crisis Line toll-free at 1-844-413-6649. is an online resource for women and their children seeking safety from violence and abuse. Quickly identify a shelter in a specific geographic area, anywhere in Canada, along with its 24-hour emergency phone number.

Kids Help Phone is Canada’s only 24/7 e-mental health service offering free, confidential support to young people in English and French. Kids Help Phone offers a variety of online resources as well as text and phone crisis support, available 24/7.

Call 1-800-668-6868 | Text CONNECT to 686868

Renfrew County

PFLAG ​is the nation's first and largest organization dedicated to supporting, educating, and advocating for LGBTQ+ people and those who love them. 100% volunteer run, the Renfrew County chapter was launched in May, 2018 in collaboration with Pembroke Pride and Family & Children's Services of Renfrew County.

Watershed offers a flexible range of programs and services to support rural women and 2SLGBTQQIA+ individuals, including those impacted by gender-based violence and social isolation, to move from survival mode into sustainable livelihoods. They offer group and one-to-one services including supportive counselling, safety planning, information and referral, and micro loans.

The Women’s Sexual Assault Centre of Renfrew County provides emotional support, information and advocacy to women and girls who have been affected by sexual violence. WSAC has a 24 hour confidential Support & Crisis Line for survivors of recent or historical sexual violence and those who support them.

Call 1-800-663-3060

Victim Services of Renfrew County Inc. is a non-profit volunteer-based organization which assists police and other emergency services in providing emotional and practical assistance to people who have experienced a crime, tragic life event or community disaster including domestic violence, partner assault, sexual violence and human trafficking.


The Ontario Coalition of Rape Crisis Centres (OCRCC) is a network of 30+ English-language sexual assault centres in Ontario. Members offer counselling, information and support services to survivors of sexual violence.

The Assaulted Women’s Helpline provides 24/7 support for women who have experienced any type of abuse anywhere in Ontario. AWHL provides free, confidential and anonymous crisis counselling, emotional support, information and referrals via telephone in up to 200+ languages from a feminist perspective. AWHL is committed to reducing barriers to service access for: women who are hard of hearing or deaf through the use of TTY and online counselling; women with disAbilities, immigrant and refugee women, women of colour, lesbians, bi-sexual women, transgendered women, senior women, rural and Northern women.

Call: TOLL-FREE 1-866-863-0511

TOLL-FREE TTY 1-866-863-7868

Seniors Safety Line 1-866-299-1011

Text: #SAFE (#7233) on your Bell, Rogers, Fido, or Telus mobile phone

LGBT Youth Line offers confidential and non-judgemental peer support for 2SLGBTQ+ youth through text and chat HelpLine services. HelpLine volunteers are trained peer supporters aged 16-29, coming from a diversity of 2SLGBTQ+ identities and lived experiences. 

SafePet Ontario provides pet safekeeping for those fleeing family violence & human trafficking. Consisting of approximately 150 foster families throughout the province, five experienced Board members, and a handful of devoted administrative volunteers who assist with foster screening, SafePet helps survivors escape abuse by temporarily caring for their beloved pets.

Mulberry provides contact information for a variety of services, including emergency women’s shelters, sexual assault centers, community GBV services and more. Information on services can be accessed through a service listing, a map based search, & via tailored search results populated via an interactive GBV services quiz.

Beendigen provides FREE support and services, by and for Indigenous women, to ensure they and their children have a safe environment to live in, free from violence. Started in 2012 by Beendigen in partnership with the Ontario Native Women’s Association, the Talk4Healing program offers 24/7 support via phone, text, and chat. Services are fully grounded in Indigenous culture, wisdom and tradition and are available in the following languages: Oji-Cree; Cree; Algonquin; Inuktitut; Mohawk; Oneida; Odawa; Potawatomi; Micmac; Black Foot; Anishinaabe; Moose Cree; Swampy Cree; English.

Call/Text 1-855-554-4325 | Access live chat on website

Fem’aide offre aux femmes d’expression française aux prises avec la violence sexiste, du soutien, des renseignements et de l’aiguillage vers les services appropriés dans leur collectivité 24 heures par jour, sept jours par semaine. 



ATS 1-866-860-7082

Clavardage en-ligne

Lanark County

Lanark County Interval House and Community Support offers emergency and on-going programs to women and children living in or escaping from domestic violence. In addition to multiple programs, LCIH offers a 24/7 Crisis Line for women: 1-800-267-7946 or 613-257-5960 or TTY 613-257-1952

Access LCIHCS’s Lanark County Resource List for more services and supports in the area.

North Hastings

Maggie's is a community-based agency dedicated to providing a broad continuum of services to rural women in North Hastings. Services offered include Crisis Intervention, Safety Planning, Transitional Housing Support, Counseling, Safe Placement and transportation for women and their children leaving abusive relationships, Advocacy, and Referrals to health, legal and income support resource centres and advocacy with legal and social services.

The Sexual Assault Centre Quinte & District is a feminist organization that provides support to people who have been affected by sexual violence through counselling programs, advocacy, public education and prevention strategies. The SACQD has  made confidential, non-judgmental support available for survivors of sexual violence on a 24 hour per day, 7 day per week crisis line - 1-877-544-6424.

Find Support
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