Christian Québecois Initiative
Against Domestic Violence

Image by Sixteen Miles Out

Christian Québecois Initiative
Against Domestic Violence

About  the Project

The Team Behind the Project

There are two Christian Direction staff who are leading this project: Jenna Smith (Project lead) and Emily Simunic (Coordinator and researcher). Our vision is for this research to be led in multifaceted ways by many engaged Québecois Christians.  The Rapha Quebec project has therefore benefitted from the vision, creativity, knowledge, and hard work of many gifted and experienced people.

We created, in September 2021, an advisory committee for the project. This committee, comprised of volunteers, includes a sociologist, a woman’s intervention worker, a director of a women’s shelter, a diocesan pastoral chaplain, an emergency and sexual trauma nurse, and a social worker with a license in counselling. The committee met monthly and helped set the direction, vision, and content for the Rapha Quebec project. They also discussed theological, pastoral and therapeutic approaches to be applied throughout.

The Rapha Survey, which comprises phase 1 of the project, was written by Emily Simunic and three other members of the advisory committee. We recruited 9 external readers who offered editing, corrections, and general input on the survey. The external readers included 2 pastors, 2 academic researchers, staff and advocates from women’s shelters and a graduate student in practical theology.

Rapha Quebec also has a team of project ambassadors. These ambassadors will be helping promote the survey, talking with their various networks about this project and encouraging their communities to engage with the research.

Inclusion and voice

Christian Direction has a long history in community development and community-led processes and projects. We are very mindful of the importance of agency and voice amongst people who are in situations of vulnerability. It is for this reason that we strive towards a survivor-informed practice, which means that survivors are multi-faceted partners in Rapha Quebec. This includes meaningful input from a diverse community of survivors at all stages of a program or project, including development, implementation, and evaluation.

Some domestic abuse survivors in our network have been willing and able to be full committee participants. Others have requested to be external, anonymous resources. We have, to the best of our ability, attempted to work with our partner survivors in a manner that is fully respectful, dignified and accommodating to each person’s expertise and experience. We thank our partners for their trust, openness, patience, and dedication in this process.

To read more about trauma-informed approaches, please follow this link: https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/publications/health-risks-safety/trauma-violence-informed-approaches-policy-practice.html

Of equal importance is our dedication to diversity of voice. Rapha Quebec is a community-led research project, and we are committed to centering voices through meaningful input, design and leadership from a diversity of communities.