Government of Canada Supports Projects to Prevent and Address Family Violence in Calgary

News release

Projects will support those who have experienced, are experiencing, or are at-risk of experiencing violence.

December 8, 2022 | Calgary, Alberta | Public Health Agency of Canada

Family violence and gender-based violence are serious public health issues that are strongly linked to mental health concerns and can have long-lasting consequences for survivors and for those around them. These issues touch families in all parts of Canada, and include many different forms of physical, sexual and emotional abuse and neglect. The Government of Canada is committed to supporting all survivors of family and gender-based violence, and safeguarding the health and safety of those at risk.

Today, as part of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health, announced more than $2.5 million in funding over four years for three initiatives by the University of Calgary that will support the mental and physical well-being of persons experiencing, or who may be at risk of experiencing, family and gender-based violence.

The University of Calgary’s initiative, Shift: The Project to End Domestic Violence, will receive $1,026,097 to implement and evaluate, Changing Contexts: The Art of the Nudge (AOTN), within the Calgary Police Service (CPS). AOTN will work with 200 CPS members to encourage more gender equitable, anti-violent behaviours in men who work in male-dominated settings. The impact of the project is expected to extend across the organization and eventually within other police services.

Shift will also receive $864,017 to implement, evaluate, and scale up ConnectED Parents, an innovative health-promotion intervention focused on teen dating violence. The resource will use peer groups and brief text-based interventions to equip parents and caregivers with the knowledge to teach their youth the necessary skills to develop and maintain healthy relationships.

Additionally, the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Social Work will receive $656,035 to adapt the Alberta Men’s Network training program in collaboration with its partners to respond to and prevent intimate partner violence (IPV) among Black men and Black communities in Calgary and Toronto. This community-based project will develop and implement IPV prevention and intervention strategies and increase their leadership capacity through training, peer-to-peer mentorship, and community education and mobilization.

The Government of Canada will continue working to prevent family and gender-based violence, support survivors, and break the cycle of violence in families and communities from coast to coast to coast


“Everyone deserves to live safe and free from violence, but that isn’t a reality for many people. The funding announced today in Calgary will be instrumental in helping those who have experienced or are at risk of family and gender-based violence find the support they need to achieve safety and stability in their lives. This investment is an important step forward, but we know we have more to do. Our government will continue to take action against family and gender-based violence and to build a future where all people are treated with dignity and respect.”

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health

“The research and work our faculty is doing in preventing and addressing family violence is of critical importance to our society and to our faculty. I’m proud and grateful that the Public Health Agency of Canada has recognized the innovative and ground-breaking work we’re doing with this funding. Lana Wells and her SHIFT team continue to be thought leaders in changing the conditions that foster domestic violence, while Dr. Patrina Duhaney’s ground-breaking work will engage Black communities to define the issues and appropriate solutions around family violence prevention.”

Dr. Ellen Perrault, PhD
Dean, University of Calgary, Faculty of Social Work

Quick facts

  • One third of Canadian adults report having experienced maltreatment as a child.

  • Family violence affects future relationships and future generations: children who have been abused, neglected or exposed to intimate partner violence are at risk of experiencing or perpetrating violence in adulthood.

  • The Survey of COVID and Mental Health indicates risk factors for child maltreatment and family violence have increased. Risk factors include depression, parental stress and alcohol consumption. Additionally, five percent of Canadians reported concerns about violence in their homes during the third wave of the pandemic, between February and May 2021.

  • The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence begins on November 25, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, until December 10, the Human Rights Day. It provides an opportunity for everyone in Canada to come together to denounce abuse, speak up alongside those who are impacted, and renew our commitment to end gender-based violence.

Associated links


Maja Staka
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health

Media Relations
Public Health Agency of Canada

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