Society aims to include men in domestic violence solution

NANAIMO: Haven Society is in the process of entering local classrooms through its Violence is Preventable program.

For more than 30 years Nanaimo’s Haven Society has helped women and children who have been victims of domestic violence find a better life through programs, services and advocacy.

Now the society is reaching out to men and school-aged boys in an effort to address the problem of violence with those who practise it, or those who are vulnerable to becoming violent.

To help launch Haven’s inclusion of men in its programming, the society is hosting Jackson Katz, a world-renowned educator, filmmaker and cultural theorist on masculinity and gender violence.

According to Tracy Myers, coordinator of programs for children and youth at Haven Society, Katz is responsible for much of the material used by Haven Society to educate people about domestic violence, the pressures boys and young men face through culture to become strong and dominant, the resulting violence and how to halt the cycle.

Haven Society is hosting Katz Nov. 26-27. On Nov. 26, Katz will give a free multi-media presentation titled The Macho Paradox – Why Some Men Hurt Women and How All Men Can Help from 7:30-9 p.m. at the Coast Bastion Inn. All members of the community are welcome.

Nov. 27 will include a men’s leadership breakfast and a prevention and social training workshop (tickets available until Thursday (Nov. 22) by going to or by calling 250-756-2452, ext. 224).

“When it comes to domestic violence in our community we want to include men in the solution,” said Myers. “We use Jackson Katz’s material because we have yet to find any other material that is as powerful or engaging, especially when it comes to involving bystanders, or people who aren’t involved directly in the violence.”

Katz is also behind the B.C. Lions’ Be More Than a Bystander campaign.

Haven Society is in the process of entering local classrooms through its Violence is Preventable program, where male volunteers speak to youth about violence in the home and in their relationships. In addition, Haven will also be running a program called Men Choose Respect through its Oceanside office, aimed at men who use violence in their relationships, as well as establishing a leadership team of men to act as advisors to help Haven reach men who might benefit from the programs.

“Unless we’re working upstream we’re just going to keep picking up the pieces downstream,” said Myers.

Katz’s latest film, Tough Guise, addresses the messaging boys are getting in today’s world about becoming men through cultural pressures and media.

“Boys and young men learn early on that being a so-called real man means you have to take on this tough guise, in other words you have to show the world only certain parts of yourself that the dominant culture has defined as manly,” said Katz in a YouTube promotion of the movie.

Katz has a group of young men express qualities they feel best describe what a man should be.

Those descriptions include physical, aggressive, tough, athletic, powerful independent, intimidating, strong and rugged.

“If you’re a boy there is a lot of pressure on you to conform, to put on the act and to be one of the guys,” said Katz, who blames media for portraying violent masculinity as a cultural norm.

Myers said the goal of the presentations is to generate male allies in the community to speak out and act against domestic violence, as well as offer alternatives to definitions of manliness presented by media and culture.

Just Posted

Nanaimo author B.S. Thompson has released his debut novel, ‘The Book of Nodd.’ (Photo courtesy Nora Funk)
Nanaimo author invites readers into dangerous world of dreams in debut novel

B.S. Thompson unveils ‘The Book of Nodd’ with online launch June 20

Potters Virginia Dunseith and Ruth Porter present their joint exhibit ‘Dig It’ at Art 10 Gallery until the end of June. (Josef Jacobson/News Bulletin)
Potters show pieces for home and garden at Nanaimo’s Art 10 Gallery

Virginia Dunseith and Ruth Porter’s show ‘Dig It’ on display until end of June

Construction work continues on the City of Nanaimo’s new Fire Station No. 1 on Fitzwilliam Street. (News Bulletin file)
Next phase of borrowing approved as Nanaimo fire hall construction ongoing

City of Nanaimo CAO says construction on Fitzwilliam Street hall on schedule and budget

Nanaimo Fire Rescue firefighters at the scene of a single-vehicle crash on Tenth Street near Southside Drive on Sunday, June 13. (Greg Sakaki/News Bulletin)
Driver OK after crashing vehicle off the side of Nanaimo’s Tenth Street

Crews say wet roads a factor a crash Sunday, June 13

Emergency crews on scene of a two-car crash at the intersection of Cranberry Avenue and the Trans-Canada Highway on Sunday, June 13. (Greg Sakaki/News Bulletin)
Crash blocks Cranberry intersection in Nanaimo, no one injured

Incident blocks both southbound lanes of Trans-Canada Highway

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

Gabriola Island artist Sheila Norgate is promoting the Digital Innovation Group’s art impact survey. (File photo)
Vancouver Island artists get behind regional arts impact study

Artists urged to use their stature to help put arts and culture super-region on the map

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

Darren Campbell’s truck (pictured) was stolen when he stopped to check on a car in a ditch on Cowichan Bay Road on Monday morning. (Facebook photo)
Vancouver Island Good Samaritan’s truck stolen in nasty trick

‘Try to be a Good Samaritan and my $20,000 truck gets stolen right under my nose’

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

Creative handmade signs abound at the June 13 Tofino rally for old growth trees. (Nora O’Malley photo)
VIDEO: Tofino stands in solidarity for Fairy Creek Blockades

Over 150 supporters attend rally hosted by Friends of Clayoquot Sound

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

Most Read