Safe emergency houses for women fleeing violence are available throughout BC. Please click below links for shelters near you.
- Transition House: Short to moderate term [in BC, generally 30 days] first stage emergency housing.
- Safe Home: Short term [generally, not to exceed 5 days] emergency housing in private home [or in rental units].
- Second Stage House: Long term (generally 3-12 months) secure housing with support designed to assist women while they search for permanent housing.
- Third Stage House: Supportive housing for women who have left violent relationships and who no longer need crisis service supports.
What to expect if you call a Transitional Housing Program
- All programs have people who can listen and help you sort out options.
- Most programs have specially trained advocates who can help with income assistance, legal services, disAbilityservices, immigration, housing, employment assistance, referrals and more.
- Transition Houses and Safe Homes offer temporary emergency shelter or a safe home.
- Second and Third Stage Housing offers longer term housing and supports for women and their children/youth.
- Some programs run support groups for children, youth and women.
- Most programs offer information about protection orders, and custody and access of children/youth.
- Most programs offer 24-hour crisis services.
What to expect if you go to a Transitional Housing Program
Every program is different, but usually you can expect that:
- Shelters are free - no fees are charged to stay.
- Most shelters have shared kitchens, common areas, and bathrooms.
- If you have children, you will probably all share one bedroom or if you are alone, you may have to share a room.
- You are responsible for taking care of your own children.
- All shelters must welcome service animals. However, most shelters cannot accommodate pets, but will work with you to make arrangements to have your pets cared for elsewhere.
- Shelters have laundry facilities and supply linens (sheets, towels and blankets).
- They will supply food, toiletries and usually some clothing is available. In most transition houses, you will share in the cooking and cleaning of the house with other residents
- Shelters can be stressful - this is group living with others who are experiencing tough times.
- You will be asked to honour the privacy of other residents by not discussing their names or situations with anyone else.
- Shelters are concerned about everybody's safety, so you may be asked to keep the location a secret.
- Visitors are generally not allowed.
Before you call a transitional housing program think about the things that are of biggest concern to you. Ask for all the details you need so you'll feel as comfortable as possible making your important decisions