Karis Support Society offers unique programs that have been created to offer support for women in various stages of their recovery. Life skills and recovery specific classes are offered on a rotation of weekly and bi-weekly topics throughout the year.
Class topics offered are created with keeping in mind each woman’s learning style, life experience and current stage of recovery. Our goal in each of our programs is to provide tools and teachings that will prepare each client for re-entry back into the community. We have three unique programming options for our clients.
1. First Stage Recovery Single Women
On one wing of the second floor we offer first stage recovery in which single women attend class four days a week. Clients and facilitators start the day with morning reflections which is a time for meditation and connection. After a short break, classes begin. The topics that are covered are listed below. In our classes we create a safe and interactive environment where we encourage dialogue among the women and facilitators.
Clients are also required to complete weekly facility chores in the building and to cook a meal once a week for the women in their wing.
Class Topics: (Please note that this is an overview and is subject to change)
• Shame Resilience
• Co-dependent No More
• Forgiveness: 21 Days to Forgive Everyone for Everything (Iyanla Vanzant)
• Love is a Choice
• Personality Profiles
• Relationship Skills
• Relapse Prevention
2. First Stage Recovery Mom and Babies
On the other wing of the second floor we have a separate area for expectant women and moms with babies. Karis is grateful to trusted community supporters like Building Healthy Families, the Pregnancy Care Centre, Interior Health nurses, Starbright Child Development Centre, Metis Society, and the Ki-low-na Friendship Center to support our clients through their pregnancy and into their parenting journey. These valuable supporters supply the women with teaching and tools for parenting through their recovery.
We are pleased to announce that this year we will be running our own parenting program which will work alongside our community supports and the classes they run as well. Our program for expectant mothers or women with children under the age of two is a recovery- focused parenting program offering information and skill development opportunities for women who are pregnant, parenting, or in the process of having their children returned to their care.
In addition to our community based parenting programs we also offer on-site support. This program includes individualized goal setting, recovery planning, relapse prevention, basic life and parenting skills with a focus on recovery-based parenting. The program will be offered on-site and childcare will be available.
Karis would like to thank the Central Okanagan Foundation for providing funding to pioneer this new program.
3. Semi-independent Living and the Aftercare program
When clients have completed six or more months on the second floor they have the option of moving onto the third floor into our semi-independent suites. Clients are required to continue with classes for the first few months while in the transition stage, after which time they are required to either pursue part-time work or school. Clients with children are encouraged to connect with community based resources for drop-in play times or informational seminars with their babies or toddlers. Participants in our onsite aftercare program are under staff supervision while working on maintaining their sobriety and transitioning towards independent living in the community.
Our clients have expressed that food security has been an issue and that considering the cost of living, they have found they struggle to adequately obtain healthy food for themselves and for their children. They have also expressed that for many of them they were never taught the basic skills in the kitchen and have difficulties making meals from scratch. Taking these issues into consideration and from financial support and funding from the City of Kelowna and the United Way Central & South Okanagan Similkameen we are launching a new program which will start in the fall as our Community Kitchen Pilot Project.
In this six week course participants will learn meal planning, budgeting, shopping (bulk purchasing), food preparation and food storage.
Karis also offers offsite aftercare for our clients who have transitioned into the community. An aftercare worker can assist in setting up a professional support system outside of Karis to aid clients in their involvement in relevant programming through a variety of organizations. An aftercare worker can also be a listening ear, an emotional support and an advocate at important appointments.
Other Services and Programs Offered within the Karis Program:
• Professional trauma counselling; both onsite and offsite
• Weekly closed AA meetings on site for our clients
• Dollars and Cents budgeting course
• Creative Circle dance program that is offered off-site once a week
• Essentials for Life funded by the United Way Central & South Okanagan (necessity items for moms with babies for on-site clients and referrals from community agencies)
• FIT 4 Defence (Empowerment through assertiveness and fitness training)
Community Supports and Programs
• Project literacy
• Building Healthy Families: DEW Program, Parenting Through Recovery
• Breakthrough Program with the Salvation Army
• One Cup Program with John Howard Society
• Kelowna Community Resources
• NOW Canada
• Society of Hope
• Kelowna Gospel Mission
• Metis Society
• Mama’s for Mama’s
• Trinity Baptist Church
• Evangel Church
• Willow Park South
• Friendship Society
• Shoppers Drug Mart Centuria Plaza