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FINAL PROJECT UPDATE

April 2017
It's complete!  Our final report to the funder was submitted in February but we are still doing lots of KT work, presenting at conferences, working on manuscripts and articles, speaking to stakeholders.... 

Researchers discovered that each region is different and had unique results. In all four regions,

researchers and graduate students used GIS mapping, interviews and focus groups to answer the

project's three foundational research questions: 1. What are the needs of women living in rural and

northern regions of Canada? Women in rural and northern areas have needs similar to those in urban

areas; 2. What are the barriers that women face in meeting these needs? IPV is situated in a context that

includes cultural attitudes towards violence, the legacy of colonization and poverty. Across the four

regions, geography, transportation, and communication are three of the problems in rural and northern

communities that are not seen in urban areas; 3. How do we create and sustain non-violent communities

in these regions? Education, especially for children and youth, was found to be the primary requirement

needed to foster healthy communities.

In ALBERTA, principal findings provide an understanding of intimate partner violence (IPV)

community response that meets the needs of women in four areas: protective factors that harness

personal and external resources; informal supports that include family, friends, and community

members drawn from cultural, faith-based, and business organizations; formal services that leverage

professional services across communities; and contextual influences that reveal how sub-population

diversity, environment, and geography affect the daily life of women in rural and northern Alberta.

In MANITOBA, although services and supports have been developed for women who experience

intimate partner violence, the needs of many women who live in rural and northern areas are not

adequately met. Under these circumstances women "make do" by seeking safety with whatever means

are available to them. The current response to intimate partner violence is primarily reactive rather than

proactive and there is multi-system involvement without recognition of the whole. Strategies used to

seek safety from violence are influenced by the unique context of rural and northern communities. This

context includes (a) remoteness and isolation; (b) community politics; (c) lack of housing; (d) lack

of/limitations of services and resources; and (e) lack of transportation.

Although the NORTWEST TERRITORIES reports violence against women nine times higher than the

national average, there is little knowledge about family violence. In this study, the researchers

explicated a grounded theory entitled "Our Hands are Tied" as the central problem in the community

response to intimate partner violence. Three processes were identified: putting up with violence,

shutting up about violence, and getting on with life. An action plan to address these issues includes

knowledge mobilization, education, assessment and screening, a coordinated response, and community

healing.

In SASKATCHEWAN, the research project determined that family violence is generational and

therefore services need to target the entire family and from an early age. There are no non-legal

responses to family violence, and the patriarchal model of the family has meant the sufferer faces

homelessness and poverty. Suggestions to mitigate these challenges include removing the perpetrator

from home and community rather than the sufferer, and providing local safe houses and cool-off

houses.

KNOWLEDGE TRANSLATION/TRANSFER and RESEARCH CAPACITY

The team also did its part in developing research capacity by employing 16 undergraduate students, 15 graduate students and 7 others, all dedicated to the success of the research project.  So far we have had 4 journal articles published with many more submitted.  33 presentations have been made at conferences as well as poster presentations, there were several public presentations to stakeholders, several articles and interviews in the mainstream media have been done, several round tables and seminars have been presented, and many of our student researchers have been using the data collected for their masters and Ph.D. work.

To see the full report please click HERE.

 

BACKGROUND

The Project

The CURA project entitled, Rural and Northern Community Response to Intimate Partner Violence will enhance the understanding of effective community response to intimate partner violence in rural and northern regions of the Canadian prairie provinces and the Northwest Territories, leading to policy change through actions of our community partners.  The project is led by the Saskatchewan branch of Research and Education for Solutions to Violence and Abuse (RESOLVE) based at the University of Regina. We are building upon the established connections among three RESOLVE prairie province research offices, researchers in the Northwest Territory (NWT), and justice and community family violence agencies across all four regions.

Despite sustained research into intimate partner violence, numerous gaps have been identified, including the need for research conducted within a Canadian context, the unique experiences of specific populations of women, and the experience of women in rural and northern communities.  Intimate partner violence is a serious social problem in the Prairie Provinces and Northwest Territories.  These regions report the highest rates of shelter utilization in Canada and the highest rates of sexual assault and intimate partner homicide.

For this project, academic partners from eight universities with expertise conducting community-based anti-violence research are working with partners from two communities sectors (shelter and victim services providers; justice system) in each region to answer the following research questions:
What are the unique needs of victims of IPV living in rural and northern areas of these regions?
What are the gaps that exist in meeting these needs?
How do we create non-violent communities in these regions?

Geographic Information System (GIS) mapping and qualitative methods are being used to gain better understanding of existing community responses to intimate partner violence and to generate policy recommendations to meet the needs of these communities.  Analyses conducted by the research team will contribute to existing theoretical understanding of IPV and generate knowledge that is action-oriented, usable by policy makers and front-line services providers.

To answer the research questions we are:

Performance indicators will mark our success over the granting period. A variety of methods will be used to communicate our results to policy makers and maximize policy change and community action.  By interacting with communities, the results will contribute to ending IPV. This will be done through raising awareness, and assisting to shape policy government, and community responses to intimate partner violence and contribute to transforming this global issue that transcends culture, economics, political ideology, and historical time frames.

 

The Alliance

The Community-University alliance is currently comprised of several academic and community-based organizations individuals and organizations with the overall umbrella being RESOLVE (Research and Education for Solutions to Violence and Abuse which is funded by the Prairie Action Foundation).  The RCMP in each region is represented by hard-working constables who are committed to the work we are doing.  The project's Elder, Betty McKenna, has provided ongoing wisdom and advice, ensuring the team remains sensitive to the Aboriginal culture.

Time commitment has been a big factor for individuals involved with community organizations.  We would like to see more involvement from these members since they have first-hand experience dealing with violence in their communities.  Team members from community organizations across the regions have made time over the past two and a half years to attend meetings, in particular the three team meetings that have taken place so far.  The planning meetings were well attended and these individuals' insight and knowledge were especially important when we were first developing the proposal.  Community people are all keen to learn about qualitative research and a document developed by the team explains different research methodologies and processes the team can use to analyse the interviews and data collected over the past two years.

There have been some delays as the team dealt with changes in responsibilities or organizations at the community level.  There were some issues in Alberta with turnover in the RCMP.  These delays will not, however, impact the final completion date which is still slated for December of 2016.

 

Research Training and Development

Since each region chose to do their environmental scan and data collection slightly differently, each region provided a different experience for their students and other research staff.  We discovered through our coordinator meetings that each region had unique contextual differences, so an additional sub-project was designed to interview each regional academic and community coordinator to develop a contextual analysis of each. Early on, literature reviews and other work by students in some regions informed the environmental scan on which the interview subjects were chosen.  The environmental scan led to the GIS mapping of victims services across all regions.

All levels of students conducted interviews, transcribed, analysed data, and provided administrative support to the team.  Online research was explained and skills developed.  Several students assisted with the environmental scan.  Some learned a great deal about GIS mapping and how it can be used as a research tool and, at the same time, inform communities.  Students were mentored by academics in the research process and conducting semi-structured interviews.  Verbatim transcription and data analysis using qualitative methods were explained.  At all times, students and other research assistants were considered part of the research team.

Further training will be required so that students and community-based researchers can take an active part in the planned in-depth data analysis that has just begun.  Turning this data analysis into a narrative that is useful to community-based organizations, planners, and policy-makers is an important part of this project.  Information and training on knowledge translation and transfer will be an important component of that phase of the project.  Students and researchers will create profiles that describe community response to intimate partner violence in rural and northern regions.

 

Research and Knowledge Production

Our initial plan:
Year One Performance Indicators (2011-2012): Draft GIS map available for viewing and validation at first yearly team meeting. These activities have been completed, but we will add to the maps each year to further enhance our understanding of the socio-spatial phenomenon under study. Community partners particularly found this helpful. .
Year Two Indicators (2012-2013): GIS map complete; Interactive GIS map loaded onto website.
Year Three Indicators (2013-2014): all case study community profiles complete.
Year Four (2014-2015): Narrative describing effective rural and northern community response to IPV complete. Development of grounded theory model for creating non-violent communities.
Year Five (2015-2016): See communication of results for variety of communication formats.

To date the team is maintaining this schedule of activities as well as adding another component - focus groups.  Our main research activities have been or will be:

 

The team:

 

Dissemination of Research Results
The team will:

 

CURA Requirements

The Logic Model submitted with our application has kept us on track for completing yearly activities. This model was used as a planning tool and has been very helpful for evaluating completing of each activity.

Formal reports at our yearly team meeting as well as monthly coordinator reports submitted to the project coordinator, housed on our website, and shared verbally at our monthly team meetings keep us on track. Our decision-making takes place using the organizational chart and the roles and responsibilities document that was approved by our team.

If a member of the public or an academic researcher requires further information or clarification of our project, please contact us using the information on this website.

 

 

 

RCNR-IPV Project Update

August 30, 2013

Having reached the half-way point in the Rural and Northern Community Response to Intimate Partner Violence Project, the following mid-term report highlights the progress from the last two and a half years and what the next two and a half years hold for the project, all of which is made possible through the hard work and dedication of the academics, community members, staff, and students who make up the team.

 

The Project

The CURA project entitled, Rural and Northern Community Response to Intimate Partner Violence will enhance the understanding of effective community response to intimate partner violence in rural and northern regions of the Canadian prairie provinces and the Northwest Territories, leading to policy change through actions of our community partners.  The project is led by the Saskatchewan branch of Research and Education for Solutions to Violence and Abuse (RESOLVE) based at the University of Regina. We are building upon the established connections among three RESOLVE prairie province research offices, researchers in the Northwest Territory (NWT), and justice and community family violence agencies across all four regions.

Despite sustained research into intimate partner violence, numerous gaps have been identified, including the need for research conducted within a Canadian context, the unique experiences of specific populations of women, and the experience of women in rural and northern communities.  Intimate partner violence is a serious social problem in the Prairie Provinces and Northwest Territories.  These regions report the highest rates of shelter utilization in Canada and the highest rates of sexual assault and intimate partner homicide.

For this project, academic partners from eight universities with expertise conducting community-based anti-violence research are working with partners from two communities sectors (shelter and victim services providers; justice system) in each region to answer the following research questions:

What are the unique needs of victims of IPV living in rural and northern areas of these regions?

What are the gaps that exist in meeting these needs?

How do we create non-violent communities in these regions?

Geographic Information System (GIS) mapping and qualitative methods are being used to gain better understanding of existing community responses to intimate partner violence and to generate policy recommendations to meet the needs of these communities.  Analyses conducted by the research team will contribute to existing theoretical understanding of IPV and generate knowledge that is action-oriented, usable by policy makers and front-line services providers.

To answer the research questions we are:

-creating an interactive GIS map of existing resources for IPV, incidents of IPV, and travel time to services in rural and northern areas of the prairie provinces and NWT;

-interviewing service providers and justice workers in rural and northern areas as well as creating in-depth community profiles of identified rural, northern and Aboriginal communities; and

-creating a narrative describing community response to IPV in our targeted regions and modeling ways to create non-violent communities in these areas.

Performance indicators will mark our success over the granting period. A variety of methods will communicate our results to policy makers and maximize policy change and community action.  By interacting with communities, the results will contribute to ending IPV. This will be done through raising awareness, and assisting to shape policy government, and community responses to intimate partner violence and contribute to transforming this global issue that transcends culture, economics, political ideology, and historical time frames.

 

The Alliance

The Community-University alliance is currently comprised of several academic and community-based organizations individuals and organizations with the overall umbrella being RESOLVE (Research and Education for Solutions to Violence and Abuse which is funded by the Prairie Action Foundation).  The RCMP in each region is represented by hard-working constables who are committed to the work we are doing.

The project's Elder, Betty McKenna, has provided ongoing wisdom and advice, ensuring the team remains sensitive to the Aboriginal culture.

Time commitment has been a big factor for individuals involved with community organizations.  We would like to see more involvement from these members since they have first-hand experience dealing with violence in their communities.  Team members from community organizations across the regions have made time over the past two and a half years to attend meetings, in particular the three team meetings that have taken place so far.  The planning meetings were well attended and these individuals' insight and knowledge were especially important when we were first developing the proposal.  Community people are all keen to learn about qualitative research and a document developed by the team explains different research methodologies and processes the team can use to analyse the interviews and data collected over the past two years.

There have been some delays as the team dealt with changes in responsibilities or organizations at the community level.  There were some issues in Alberta with turnover in the RCMP.  These delays will not, however, impact the final completion date which is still slated for December of 2016.

 

Research Training and Development

Since each region chose to do their environmental scan and data collection slightly differently, each region provided a different experience for their students and other research staff.  We discovered through our coordinator meetings that each region had unique contextual differences, so an additional sub-project was designed to interview each regional academic and community coordinator to develop a contextual analysis of each. Early on, literature reviews and other work by students in some regions informed the environmental scan on which the interview subjects were chosen.  The environmental scan led to the GIS mapping of victims services across all regions.

All levels of students conducted interviews, transcribed, analysed data, and provided administrative support to the team.  Online research was explained and skills developed.  Several students assisted with the environmental scan.  Some learned a great deal about GIS mapping and how it can be used as a research tool and, at the same time, inform communities.  Students were mentored by academics in the research process and conducting semi-structured interviews.  Verbatim transcription and data analysis using qualitative methods were explained.  At all times, students and other research assistants were considered part of the research team.

Further training will be required so that students and community-based researchers can take an active part in the planned in-depth data analysis that has just begun.  Turning this data analysis into a narrative that is useful to community-based organizations, planners, policy-makers is an important part of this project.  Information and training on knowledge translation and transfer will be an important component of that phase of the project.  Students and researchers will create profiles that describe community response to intimate partner violence in rural and northern regions.

Research and Knowledge Production

Our initial plan:

Year One Performance Indicators (2011-2012): Draft GIS map available for viewing and validation at first yearly team meeting. These activities have been completed, but we will add to the maps each year to further enhance our understanding of the socio-spatial phenomenon under study. Community partners particularly found this helpful. .

Year Two Indicators (2012-2013): GIS map complete; Interactive GIS map loaded onto website. (complete; however, analysis of these interview will not be fully complete until December 1, 2013)

Year Three Indicators (2013-2014): all case study community profiles will be complete. (ethics application in process)

Year Four (2014-2015): Narrative describing effective rural and northern community response to IPV complete. Development of grounded theory model for creating non-violent communities.

Year Five (2015-2016): See communication of results for variety of communication formats. Policy change will begin implementation where needed.

 

To date the team is maintaining this schedule of activities.  Our main research activities over the last two and a half years have been:

-Environmental Scan

-GIS Mapping of Victims' Services

-Development of the Interview Questions

-Recruitment of Interview Participants

-Interviews

-Transcription

-Choosing and Developing a Methodology for Data Analysis (Grounded Theory)

-Development of Community Profiles

-Data Analysis

-Developing the Narrative

-Knowledge Dissemination, Translation, Transfer

 

The team:

-maintained and strengthened the alliance (of academic and community-based researchers committed to completing the project, in particular, adding the RCMP as a key component of the team);

-produced the Environmental Scan;

-using GIS mapping, Victims' Services in the 4 regions were mapped;

-conducted the interviews; and

-completed data analysis.

 


Dissemination of Research Results

The team plans to:

-create community narratives and profiles that describe community response to IPV in rural and northern areas of provinces/NWT (these will be available on our website and will target community victims services workers).

-create grounded theory model for creating non-violent communities - topic for conferences, journal articles, books.

-make available GIS mapping to community-based workers, policy-makers, government agencies - it is hoped these maps can be kept current in the years to come.

-create a model and action plan for sustaining non-violent communities in rural and northern regions of Canada.

-inform policy makers to maximize policy change and community action to implement findings from our research.

-Conferences have and will be attended, journal articles have and will be submitted, and meetings with stake-holders are being planned.

-create an interactive map of our current and maps will be available to policy makers, administrators, service providers, as well as academics.

-use the website extensively to present project results.

-continue to make available the Environmental Scan for all four regions to community groups.

 

 

CURA Requirements

The Logic Model submitted with our application has kept us on track for completing yearly activities. This model was used as a planning tool and has been very helpful for evaluating completing of each activity.

Formal reports at our yearly team meeting as well as monthly coordinator reports submitted to the project coordinator, housed on our website, and shared verbally at our monthly team meetings keep us on track. Our decision-making takes place using the organizational chart and the roles and responsibilities document that was approved by our team.

If a member of the public or an academic researcher requires further information or clarification of our project, please contact us using the information on this website.