HOW TRANSITION HOUSE CAME TO BE
In November 1977, Anne Crocker of Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada, received a call from her friend Carolyn Ennis who was inquiring about refuge for a woman being beaten by her husband. After a checking the community services and learning that nothing was available, Crocker contacted a number of other women and invited them and teh police chief to a meeting. The problem was discussed and a decision was made to get the support of Peter Alderman, Social Services and to appeal for financial assistance. The answer to the appeal was that budgets were frozen and that any project to aid battered women would be political. At that time there was no evidence that this was a serious problem. No statistics could be retrieved from Social Services files however, statistics were obtained from City Police, Chimo, Rape Crisis and Family Enrichment.
In February 1978, a meeting was arranged with Leslie Hull, Minister of Social Services, to seek provincial support for the problem. Leslie Hull was unaware that a problem even existed and doubted that money could be committed towards a Transition House.
At about the same time, a request for Demonstration Project funding which had been sent to Health and Welfare Canada was rejected. The request had been supported by the above-mentioned organizations and by Robert Howie, M.P..
In May 1978, an Advisory Council meeting was held in Saint John, N.B. and Minister Leslie Hull was invited to discuss "Green Paper on Child and Family Services". The Advisory Council made a very strong plea for protective services for women such as Transition Houses. They also questioned the sincerity of the government in providing assistance to women if they would not support a Transition House.
In July 1978, a Summer Youth Employment Project undertook a research project on the incidence of wife abuse in the Fredericton, N.B. area. That same summer, the Department of Social Services agreed to provide a per diem of $9.30 per client provided additional funding was obtained from other sources.
In the fall of 1978, further meetings were held to explore other possible sources of funding such as, United Way, C.M.H.C. and Fredericton Foundation.
In February 1979, Joanne MacBride attended a meeting with United Way Needs and Evaluation Committee to discuss emergency housing in Fredericton, N.B. Transition House was invited to sit on the committee and Anne Crocker and Donna Lane agreed to do so as long as Transition House could continue to pursue funding as a separate facility.
The First Annual General Meeting of Transition House was held in March 1979. Anne Crocker was elected President, Joanne MacBride, Vice-President and Donna Lane, Secretary-Treasurer.
In May 1979, the Department of Social Services awarded a start up grant of $10,000.000 to Transition House. At the same time, a decision was made to hire a co-ordinator who would document prospective funding agencies and begin to contact other community service organizations.
Paula Wilson was appointed co-ordinator and began work in July 1979.
In September 1979, L.E.A.P Proposal for staff salaries for one year was submitted and the province agreed to provide a house.
At a public meeting held in October 1979, pledges of $5,000.00 were received from women's organizations in the Fredericton area.
In November 1979, the L.E.A.P Proposal was accepted and a training program developed. That same month, staff were hired and their training began.
Local businesses, new staff and board members helped to repair and redecorate Transition House in December of 1979.
January 14, 1980 Transition House officially opened
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