Signal for Help Podcast

Welcome to Signal for Help, a special podcast series from the Canadian Women’s Foundation and award-winning women journalists, Media Girlfriends.

We know that gender-based violence is a problem, and we want to support survivors in our lives, but there’s a lot of stigma and silence around gender-based violence in our society: too many people who experience abuse are shamed, silenced, and stigmatized, and too many people don’t feel confident and competent in supporting them.

Featuring interviews with survivors and experts, we’ll explore how everyday people can better support survivors of gender-based violence.

Listen wherever you get your podcast content. This podcast includes stories of gender-based violence. Please listen with care.

6-Episode Series (2023)

Ruby: If I can help just one person – Episode 2 (March 27)

This week, we meet Ruby – a strong advocate for the work of the Canadian Women’s Foundation. Ruby is based in Toronto, with a young daughter, a loving family, and strong ties to her South Asian community. She is also the survivor of physical, emotional, and “all forms of violence” experienced at the hands of her ex-husband while living with him and his family. She describes her ex-husband’s family as complicit in the abuse, which left her feeling isolated and helpless even though she was surrounded by people. She describes the shame she carried – for her “choice” in the relationship, and for the times she left and returned. And, she describes her final exit alongside her family and the court systems, all motivated by her fierce love and protection for her daughter. Now that she has experienced support and accessed resources available to her, she wants others to know that there is hope.

Eternity: Listen without judgement – Episode 1 (March 20)

Statistically, girls and gender-diverse young people face high rates of intimate partner violence — rates more than double what women aged 25 to 44 experience, and more than six times higher than what women aged 65 or older experience, according to one national survey. Eternity Martis knows these statistics well, as an award-winning journalist, author, and assistant professor of journalism at Toronto Metropolitan University. Her 2020 memoir, They Said This Would Be Fun spotlights her experiences being a student of colour on a predominantly white campus, while also being with an abusive boyfriend. This episode focuses on Eternity’s first-person account of navigating university life while navigating her abusive relationship. She speaks about being let down by the university, struggling with her studies, and finally finding a way out. Eternity’s story also touches on the way race factors into intimate partner violence. Now, as an educator who interacts with young people, she has many thoughts on helping students and young people who are faced with the same dilemma.

This project has been funded by Women and Gender Equality Canada.

Logos for Women and Gender Equality Canada and Government of Canada

Where to Listen

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When you know how to respond to the signs of abuse, you can change the story.

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Check out our other Canadian Women’s Foundation podcast:

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