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Wilfrid Laurier University Leaf
September 25, 2016
Canadian Excellence

Ginette Lafrenière receives grant to examine violence against women

The next few years are going to be particularly busy for Dr. Ginette Lafrenière, Faculty of Social Work professor and Social Innovation Research Group (SIRG) director. She was recently awarded several research grants that will allow her to examine various aspects of violence again women in studies that will take several years to complete.

The first grant, $197,000 from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), is a partnership with Women's Crisis Services, Family Transition Place in Orangeville and Halton Women’s Services.

"The goal of this project is to better understand the post-shelter experience of domestic violence survivors," said Lafrenière. "We wish to interview 100 survivors from Kitchener, Cambridge, Halton and Caledon/Dufferin to get an understanding of what some of the factors were that enhanced the survivors' ability to integrate back into society. What made it helpful for them not to go back to their abuser or the shelter?"

The research team will also be interviewing collaborators, such as those in housing, daycare, the legal community, Ontario Works etc., to look at where there are gaps in support and services that are provided to survivors and their families.

The second project is a collaboration between Family Transition Place and SIRG. Through a $187,000 grant from Status of Women Canada, the researchers will be doing a gender-based analysis to understand the specificity of violence against women in a ruralurban emote environment.

The primary outcome of this project will be a documentary highlighting interviews with professionals, survivors, women, girls, men and other stakeholders in Caledon/Dufferin. "The documentary," Lafrenière explained, "is an exciting and creative opportunity to bring to life important issues and discussing them via this medium.”

Other smaller grants are dedicated to process and outcome evaluations for several nonprofit and social service agencies in Kitchener-Waterloo.

All Social Innovation Research Group (SIRG) projects involve MSW and PhD students from Laurier's Faculty of Social Work. "SIRG is a vibrant research and training incubator that provides opportunities for some of our students to get out in the field and get some hands-on experience in community-based research, grant writing and training in various aspects of community social work," said Lafrenière.