This funding will help bring new services like counselling, crisis response and outreach supports to rural parts of the province, where these supports are not currently available.

“Survivors of sexual violence deserve dignified and compassionate front-line service regardless of where they live in the province. This funding will not only help ensure people in rural Alberta have access to these critical supports, but it will also offer hope of recovery for victims of abuse.”

Rajan Sawhney, Minister of Community and Social Services

“With 43 per cent of Albertans experiencing at least one incident of sexual violence in their lifetime, along with growing numbers of survivors reaching out to sexual assault centres for support, additional funding from the Government of Alberta is now more important than ever.” 

Deb Tomlinson, executive director, Association of Alberta Sexual Assault Services

The Hinton Friendship Centre will receive $192,000 to deliver new services in Hinton, Edson, Jasper and Yellowhead County. Dragonfly Counselling and Support Centre in Bonnyville will receive $180,000 to deliver new services in Wabasca/Desmarais, Slave Lake and Smoky Lake.

“Living a life free from violence is every person's human right, and the Dragonfly Centre's goal is to stop sexual violence from happening in the first place. Funding from the Alberta government is essential in supporting the work we do to increase awareness and respond to those who have been harmed and support them through their healing journey.”

Cheryl Bujold, executive director, Dragonfly Counselling and Support Centre

“We are hoping by having this funding we can assist women, children and others who are fleeing sexual violence in a more efficient way in a rural setting. The ability to provide therapeutic services closer to home will be less traumatic for the individuals fleeing. The impacts of the funding will be lifelong for the participants.”

Lisa Higgerty, executive director, Hinton Friendship Centre

This additional funding is part of the Alberta government’s platform commitment to increase support for sexual assault services. The increase will be distributed to all provincially funded sexual assault centres based on a percentage of their annual grant allocations.

Anyone experiencing sexual violence should call Alberta’s One Line for Sexual Violence at 1-866-403-8000 to be connected to supports.

Quick facts

  • Budget 2021 allocates about $12.6 million for sexual violence prevention supports.
  • Funding is provided to 15 agencies in Alberta and the Association of Alberta Sexual Assault Services (AASAS).
  • According to a 2019 study by AASAS, about 43 per cent of Albertans (1.8 million) have experienced sexual violence.
    • Two out of three women and one out of three males have experienced sexual violence.
    • 95 per cent of sexual violence survivors do not report assaults to police.
    • 47 per cent of survivors in Canada are between the ages of 15 and 24.