Sexplique Québec, QC This program equips young people with violence-prevention [...]
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For Ben Lord, the Making Waves program was a game-changer.
“The program opened my eyes to a lot of things I hadn’t thought about before, like how a lot of relationship problems are about gender.”
He attended the teen healthy relationships program, which received funding from the Canadian Women’s Foundation, when he was a high school student in New Brunswick. Teen healthy relationship programs help participants break down gender stereotypes, recognize the signs of abusive relationships, and practise the skills they need to develop healthy ones.
Although teen healthy relationships programs are offered across Canada, there is a lack of coordinated efforts to link and support these programs.
“Young women are telling us loud and clear they’re worried about the future of gender equality in Canada,” says Paulette Senior, President and CEO of the Canadian Women’s Foundation.
She’s responding to the sobering findings of a new Canadian Women’s Foundation study that indicate 79 per cent of Canadians believe Gen Z women (those born after 1999) will be just as likely or even more likely to feel unsafe because of their gender.
The study asked participants whether they expect the next generation of women to experience various forms of violence: sexual assault, online harassment, physical violence from a partner, as well as sexual harassment in public or at work. In all of the categories, the majority said violence against women will either persist or get worse.
During our May-long Campaign to End Violence, we're publishing a weekly roundup of impact stories, infographics and resources to raise awareness about violence against women and girls in Canada.
This week's is on healthy relationships and consent.
Every parent has those moments when we’re suddenly reminded how quickly our child is growing up: the first step, the first tooth, the first time they walk to school without us. For many parents, one of the most challenging milestones is realizing our child is interested in “romance” and dating. The best way to prepare them—and protect them—is to teach them how to build strong, healthy relationships.
Our children learn about relationships every day, simply by observing the world around them. As Director of Violence Prevention at the Canadian Women’s Foundation, I can tell you that most of what they see is not good. Throughout their lifetime, the average child in Canada will witness thousands of examples of unhealthy relationships— at school, on social media, in celebrity gossip magazines, music videos, movies, and TV. If we don’t teach our children about relationships someone else will, and we won’t like the results!