Nova Vita’s reputation as a leading authority in the area of domestic violence is the result of over 30 years’ experience in providing relevant, quality services and programs that meet the changing needs of the community. Here is an overview of our services and programs:


  • 24-Hour Crisis Line: The 24-hour crisis telephone line, 519-752-HELP(4357), is available to anyone in the community who is in crisis, or who needs help and advice about an issue involving domestic violence. While many of the callers are women who themselves are the victims of physical and/or emotional abuse, an increasing number of calls are from concerned friends, family members, neighbours and co-workers.


  • Residential Services: We have 33 emergency beds for abused and/or homeless women and their children. The shelter is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, providing a safe haven, meals, support, information and referrals to other community resources. The child-friendly facility has both indoor and outdoor play areas. Children and adolescents receive the comfort and support they need from a dedicated Child and Youth Worker and an Early Childhood Educator.


The following services/programs can be accessed by contacting our Programs/Community Counselling Intake Worker at 519-752-1005 ext. 221.


  • Outreach:  Our services for women who want to make the transition to an independent, violence-free life which may include safety planning, referrals to other community resources, accompaniment (i.e. to court, lawyer’s office, other appointments), and advocacy with social service agencies, home support and follow-up.


  • Family Court Support: To liaise and coordinate services with other community agencies and to identifying resources needed.  We provide support and accompaniment for clients to family court, lawyers appointments and to provide information about the Family Court process and assist in navigating the Family Court system.


  • Transitional Housing: Maria House – A Home for Families in Transition offers 8 residential units 3 – two bedroom units, 1- three bedroom unit and 4 – one bedroom units for longer term residential stays for women and children in a setting that combines independent living with counselling and life skills training. Two of these units are wheelchair accessible.


  • Community Counselling for Women: Counselling is provided to women aged 16 and over who are in – or have been in – an abusive relationship. Most counselling takes place in small group settings, where participants can draw support from one another. The stronger focus on group counselling, combined with streamlined intake procedures, have drastically reduced the waiting times for service.


  • Children Exposed to Domestic Violence: Children and adolescents aged 4 to 16 meet in small groups to deal with the impact of the violence they witnessed against their mothers. Concurrently, the mothers attend separate sessions to discuss the impact of domestic violence on their children and learn parenting/coping strategies.


  • Mothers in Mind: This program is very similar to the Children Exposed to Violence Program except it is designed specifically for infants, toddlers and children up to five years and their mothers.


  • Differential Response: A partnership with Brant Family and Children’s Services that brings a Nova Vita worker and a FACS worker together to meet with the victim and perpetrator of domestic violence to assess the needs of the family and develop a plan of intervention that meets each member of the family’s needs.


  • Caring Families: This prevention-based program helps parents create respectful adult relationships and a cooperative, positive co-parenting approach with their children. Concurrent group sessions are offered to mothers, fathers, and children.


  • S.C.R.I.B.E (Men’s Program): This 12-week program is directed at men who are, or are at risk of becoming, abusive towards their partners. Through group counselling, participants discover how violence has impacted their families, learn how to stop their abusive behaviours and develop new respect for their partners and their relationship. The safety of the participants’ female partners is monitored through the Partner Check Program.


  • Partner Assault Response Program (PAR):  This is a 12 week psycho-educational program for perpetrators of domestic violence who have been charged through the criminal court system. As in Challenge to Change program, the safety of a partner or ex-partner is monitored through the Partner Check program where ex-partners are contacted by telephone or offered counselling.


  • Closet Couture: This is a social enterprise where gently used, high-end, donated clothing is sold in a boutique atmosphere. After expenses are covered all proceeds are donated back to Nova Vita’s programs and services.


  • Volunteer Program: Nova Vita has over 100 volunteers who offer their time, skills and services to Nova Vita and our clients. Volunteers play a major role at Closet Couture, fundraising and assisting staff with programs and services. Skilled volunteers also offer services such as massage therapy, yoga, ascetics and hair dressing on a regular basis to our residential clients.
  • Violence Prevention and Community Outreach: Class presentations are delivered to high school and elementary students on such topics as domestic violence, teen dating violence, sexual harassment and healthy relationships. Additionally, upon request we will provide on-site counselling at select schools. Nova Vita also conducts in-service seminars at local agencies and delivers workshops and presentations on various issues surrounding domestic violence to service clubs, churches, businesses and other groups in the community upon request.