Q & A For Women

The following are some of the common questions we are asked about Nipissing Transition House and living with us.

Question: What is the criteria for staying at Nipissing Transition House?
Answer: Women, 16 years of age and older, who are fleeing an abusive relationship can request admission to the shelter. The Crisis Resource Counsellor will complete an assessment with each woman to determine suitability for admission. Women coming to the shelter must be able to live cooperatively with other residents in the shelter, abide by shelter expectations and care for herself and her children.

Question: How long can I stay?
Answer: Due to the housing crisis in North Bay, we do not have a definite predetermined length of stay; however, all women are expected to be actively looking for housing while they are here. The needs of women, including length of stay, are assessed on a regular basis.

Question: Do I have to be physically abused to come to Shelter?
Answer: No. Abuse can take many forms and impact on a women’s physical and emotional safety. Nipissing Transition House assists women who are fleeing all forms of abuse.

Question: Where is the Shelter?
Answer: Nipissing Transition House is located at 547 John Street, North Bay, Ontario. We are such a small community that our location cannot remain confidential. We ask that if you are able, to please call ahead so we know who is coming to the shelter. The shelter phone number is 705-476-2429.

Question: Can I bring my children to the Shelter?
Answer: Yes. We accept all female children. When a female reaches the age of 16, we then consider her a woman in the shelter. We accept male children up to and including 15 years of age. Women with male children sixteen years of age and older will be referred to the Crisis Centre, a coed shelter in North Bay or staff will brainstorm with Mom alternative arrangements. The phone number for the Crisis Centre is 705-474-1031.

Question: Will my children go to school while I’m in the Shelter?
Answer: Yes. Staff can assist you in enrolling your children into a nearby school or making arrangements for transportation so they can continue to attend their current school. The shelter’s Child and Youth Advocate can also assist with helping Mom’s apply for subsidized daycare.

Question: Can I bring my pets to the Shelter?
Answer: Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate pets in the Shelter. Service animals are permitted to be with you at all times during your stay. Food and water will be provided to service animals during your stay.

Question: What should I bring to the Shelter?
Answer: If you can, you should bring your identification and your children’s identification. Bring any paperwork/documentation/pictures that you will not be able to replace or get copies of. Bring with you clothing that you will need during your stay. Please be aware that all clothing must be washed in the shelter prior to it being allowed in your bedroom. We have limited space in the shelter and in your bedroom so we cannot accommodate furniture.

Question: Do you have extra clothing for me and my children?
Answer: We may have some emergency clothing at the Shelter and basic toiletries are provided. With staff’s advocacy, we are fortunate that some agencies in our community will help with emergency clothing.

Question: What does it cost for me to stay at the Shelter?
Answer: There is no cost to you for staying at Nipissing Transition House. Your stay is funded by the Ministry of Community and Social Services.

Question: Will people know that I’m staying at Nipissing Transition House?
Answer: Your confidentiality and safety are our highest priorities. We do not disclose any information about people who reside at the shelter, including their identities.

Question: Will my partner be able to find me?
Answer: Nipissing Transition House has security measures and safety practices in place to protect your safety.

Question: What will my bedroom be like?
Answer: Our bedrooms include beds, dressers and a closet. Families stay in a bedroom together. If you are a single woman, in all likelihood, you will have a roommate during your stay with us.

Question: Do I have to participate in all of the programs?
Answer: We have a weekly resident’s meeting that is mandatory for all women in the shelter. Women’s Outreach offers a number of different groups that are voluntary for women. We do encourage women to participate as these groups provide support and education.

Question: Can I continue to work while living at Women’s Community House?
Answer: Yes, you can continue to work. Staff can assist in developing a safety plan for you specific to your employment. You will be responsible for making appropriate transportation arrangements and for arranging childcare outside of the shelter.

Question: Does Nipissing Transition House accept lesbians?
Answer: Yes. Lesbians, bisexual and transgendered women who have been abused are welcome.

Question: What happens if I don’t want to come to the shelter but still need some of the programs and services the shelter offers?
Answer: Women’s Outreach is available to support women who, for whatever reason, do not come to the stay at the shelter.

Question: Is there any follow up once I leave the shelter?
Answer: Through Women’s Outreach, a Transitional Housing Support Worker will follow up with you, with your consent, for pre-approved periods of time after you leave the shelter. Women’s Outreach also offers one on one support and/or programming for ex-resident women. Ex-residents can also contact the shelter directly for support, information and to touch base.

Question: Should I call the shelter first before I come over?
Answer: We suggest that if you are able to do so, that you call the shelter first so staff can assess your situation and to ensure that room is available. If you are concerned for your safety, we encourage you to come directly to the shelter for safety purposes.

Question: What if the shelter is full?
Answer: There may be times that Nipissing Transition House is full and we are not able to admit anyone else. When this happens, we do our best to connect women to other shelters in the area and assist in making safe transportation arrangements.

Question: Who will look after my children when I have appointments?
Answer: Nipissing Transition is able to provide limited and minimal child care. Women are encouraged to make arrangements for child care outside of the shelter.