Shelter, safety and support
Our programs and services provide shelter, safety and support by helping individuals recognize, understand and overcome the impacts of abuse. Our services are provided to individuals who have experienced, or who are at risk of experiencing violence or abuse in the South Okanagan (from Summerland to Osoyoos and from Naramata to Keremeos).
Established in 1981, SOWINS (South Okanagan Women in Need Society) is a Federally Registered Charity #12998 7665 RR0001 and Incorporated BC Society #S-16224.
SOWINS is governed by a volunteer board of six to 10 community members. An Executive Director oversees the staff of 60+ individuals. Staff is comprised of part-time, full-time and casual positions, at three Penticton locations locations throughout the South Okanagan-Similkameen.
We are a compassionate group dedicated to the vision of a society where all individuals have the ability to make choices to live a safe and healthy life. Collaborative and co-creative for the benefit our clients and community, we partner with peer agencies, work on response and policy development committees, and provide educational information about abuse to the general community.
All individuals have the ability to make choices to live a safe and healthy life
Supporting individuals in their recovery from the impact of violence and abuse while working to prevent violence and abuse in our communities.
- Every person is an individual deserving of respect and dignity
- Abuse is a societal issue, not a private one, and we all have a personal and collective responsibility to end violence
- Addressing and coping with abuse requires ongoing individualized support from a variety of community and personal supports for both victim and offender
- Violence is a learned behaviour and can be addressed through education, counselling and accountability
- Relationship violence impacts everyone in the family
- Abuse can have devastating impacts on all aspects of self
- All forms of abuse are unacceptable
- Healthy relationships are cooperative, balanced and equal
How we help
We are here for you. We will give you information and guidance to help you make decisions and choices based on your personal situation that will help you take the steps towards change – away from abuse. People can also call for information about how to assist a friend, family member or business associate who has experienced abuse.
Women may phone and ask for help whenever it is needed
No referral is necessary
Our services are free
Crisis Line 250-493-7233 / 250-493-SAFE 1-800-814-2033
The 24-hour Crisis Line provides support for women who are experiencing or at risk of abuse. Staff is available 24/7/365 as the first point of contact for individuals who are seeking help, support, and information.
If you or someone you know is in a life-threatening situation, PLEASE CALL 911 IMMEDIATELY.