As the holiday season approaches, many of us are making plans to spend time with family and friends we love and who love us. It can be a wonderful time of year, when we take the time from our usual hectic pace to truly enjoy all that we have.

However, for a woman who, with her children, has left an abusive relationship, the season can feel anything but festive. While many assume that leaving the relationship ends the abuse, this is not true. Ontario’s Domestic Violence Death Review Committee’s reports tell us year after year that women who have been abused are at the highest risk of increased abuse, including lethal violence, during the separation process.

How Luke’s Place helps

Luke’s Place provides support to women and their children in Durham Region who have been subjected to abuse. In 2018-2019, we assisted 810 women in this community as they navigated the family law system. Every year at this time, we work with women who, instead of travelling to visit family, shopping for the ingredients for a special meal or picking out gifts for their children, are at family court fighting to ensure safe access arrangements for their kids or for the child support they need to pay the bills. Many abusers see the holiday season as a time to threaten and manipulate their former partner, with no regard for the impact this has on their children.

Need for our services increases every year, but we continue to operate without regional, provincial or federal annualized funding. This means we rely on donations from community associations, businesses and individuals – people like you.

How you can help

However you celebrate this season, help us help women and children for whom this holiday time is filled with fear and disappointment rather than good cheer.

A donation of $150 will support one woman to attend our Family Law Information Workshops, where she will learn basic legal information to assist her with her case.

$250 will pay for one woman to participate in our family law networking group that provides a space for women beginning the family court process to learn from other women who are farther along the process.

$500 allows us to provide legal support services to one woman and her children for a year.

We make you this promise: Luke’s Place will continue to stretch every dollar we receive to help women and children fleeing abuse stay safer during this season and throughout their entire family law process.

Please make a tax deductible donation in any amount today. We wish you and your family the peace and joy everyone deserves.

Thank you from the Luke’s Place Team.