Sisters in Spirit Flag Raising and Vigil


And every time another one of us is shunned,
every time another one of us is gunned down,
the Earth cries out in pain
having to erase another name.
And every time our self-esteem’s depleted
every time another one of us is beaten,
We have to say a prayer….
And hope another man not dare.

— From the song “Standing Strong” by Tamara Podemski

Government statistics in Canada show that Aboriginal women are 5 times more likely to die as a result of violence than other women. In 2004 The Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) launched the Sisters in Spirit Campaign to bring this shocking fact to the attention of Canadians.

The Sisters in Spirit Action Committee, Hamilton was formed in April 2005 to support these initiatives. Current membership includes several dedicated people from the community as well as representatives from: Amnesty International Canada, De dwa da dehs nye>s Aboriginal Health Centre, Native Women’s Centre, Hamilton Regional Indian Centre, Hamilton Community Legal Clinic, Hamilton Police Service, Correctional Service Canada, Ontario Aboriginal HIV/AIDS Strategy, and SACHA – Sexual Assault Centre (Hamilton & Area).

Our purpose is to draw public attention and education to the pervasive problem of violence against Aboriginal women across Canada, while we honour and remember our Sisters in Spirit. We as an action committee also support any official inquiry, round table or commission that will assist the resolution of this crisis.

The Sisters in Spirit Action Committee Hamilton invite you to participate in our upcoming community events to honour our 1200 Missing and Murdered Aboriginal Women, girls, and trans people across Canada.

SIS 2014 FINALFlag Raising at City Hall
Wednesday October 1, 2014 at 12:00 – 1:15pm
71 Main St. W Hamilton

Candlelight Vigil, Water Ceremony & Community Dinner at Honouring the Circle
October 4, 2014 at 5:00 pm
21 Rosendene Ave. Hamilton

Come and gather to show we are a united front. Each vigil is a beacon of hope and strength! Help us honour restore the memory of our loved ones; our sisters, our daughters, our mothers, our aunties, our grandmothers, and their families.


For more information please visit or contact us on:
Facebook at Sisters in Spirit: Hamilton Chapter
Twitter @sisters_spirit

More information:


SACHA’s United Way Accessory Sale


Did you know that United Way was SACHA’s very first funder?

Did you know that in Hamilton and Burlington the United Way funds over 126 programs to foster community engagement and promote well-being and safety?

SACHA is hosting a Jewellery and Accessory Sale in support of the United Way Burlington & Greater Hamilton.

SACHAUnitedWayJewelrySaleWhen: Thursday, October 16th – 12pm to 1pm and 5pm to 6pm
Where: YWCA Hamilton Lobby – 75 MacNab Street South
What: Gently used jewellery, purses, scarves, hats, and other accessories for sale in support of the United Way.

More information: Call Leslie at 905.525.4573 x232 or email

TBTN Thank Yous!


SACHA has lots of folks to thank for this year’s Take Back the Night!

IMG_20140909_102936There is not many words that can describe our TBTN committee volunteers.  Amazing and incredible are a couple but don’t come close to the true awesomeness of these women.  We start meeting and organizing in May and work all summer long.

Volunteers can be found asking local businesses for donations, coordinating volunteers, taking on promoting the event, putting up posters around Hamilton, discussing poster and t-shirt design at a committee meeting, assembling buttons, cutting up handbills, inviting local organizations to table at the event.

Take Back the Night would not be able to happen without your work.

Thank you to the volunteers who help make the event run smoothly.  These folks do everything from carrying giant puppets to serving the food at the end of the night.

And lastly, thank you to our supporters who donate money, food or goods to us.  Without them we would not be able to afford the cost of putting on TBTN and we would not have any food to share at the end of the evening.  The next time you’re at their business, please thank them for helping out.


TBTN March and Information


This Thursday we will be gathering at Hamilton’s City Hall for Take Back the Night.

Take Back the Night is a powerful opportunity for women-identified folks to celebrate women’s strengths and to remind our community that one in three women will experience sexual violence in their lifetime.

6pm – We Gather
7pm – We Rally
7:30pm – We March


Over twenty five community agencies will be there with information and activities.  Visit the SACHA table to find out more about the work we do supporting survivors and working to end violence.  Pick up some buttons or patches at our table as well! Make a sign to carry during the march.


At the rally we’ll get ready to march by doing some amazing laughter yoga together then getting moving by practicing some zumba!


The march will be leaving City Hall at 7:30pm and following this route:

TBTN Route 2013

If you are not able to march the entire route there is a short cut back to City Hall at Summers Lane near the Hamilton Convention Centre.  There will be a TBTN marshal waiting there to walk with folks back to City Hall. (She will be holding an amazing sign and wearing a reflective vest.  You can’t miss her!)

Also, this year we will have an HSR city bus following the march for folks who are not able to walk the entire way.

We will be marching on the street and we are lucky to have some amazing volunteers as marshals from Hammer City Roller Girls and Student Health Education Centre (SHEC).

The marshals are there to keep an eye out for everyone’s safety.  We ask that you follow their instructions.  If you need any assistance during the march please talk to a marshal.

The march takes about an hour to walk.  We walk at a slower pace than most folks’ walking speed.  Please be patient as many women coming to Take Back the Night have strollers or little ones joining them or they are using wheelchairs, scooters, walkers, canes or other mobility devices.  The soundtruck will be setting the pace for the march.  Please walk behind the soundtruck.

Take Back the Night can bring up many emotions – joy, sadness, excitement, fear, love. If you need to talk with someone please visit the SACHA table where there are folks ready to listen or call SACHA’s 24 Hour Support Line – 905.525.4162.

What to bring?

  • A sign with your message about ending violence — There will be a sign making table at the gathering with lots of glitter, markers and bristol board if you’d like to make a sign at the event.
  • Comfy shoes — The march is an hour long!
  • A water bottle — There are water filling stations at the gathering and a fountain in City Hall.
  • Noise makers — Let’s get loud!
  • A raincoat (perhaps…) — TBTN happens rain or shine!

More Information

McMaster, Mohawk, Media and Meetings


Yesterday was one week until Take Back the Night in Hamilton.  We had a busy day.

We started off with a ‘Who Is SACHA?’ discussion at McMaster University hosted by OPIRG McMaster.IMG_20140911_120328 We talked about SACHA services, our history and how we support survivors and work to end violence.  We also chatted about the myths and lies we’re taught about feminism and why those myths exist.  We ended the discussion by thinking of ways that folks can take action at McMaster to end gender based violence.

We then popped by the office of amazing SACHA supporters at McMaster’s Student Walk Home Attendant Team (SWHAT).

IMG_20140911_102401Quickly, we hopped over the Mohawk College where we were interviewed by the MoCast team as well as students in the journalism program about Take Back the Night.  Erin from SACHA and Amelia from Mohawk’s Social Inc. got a chance to show off Mohawk’s two ‘Most Women from an Organization’ TBTN awards and to record a TBTN PSA.


We also had our final Take Back the Night committee meeting before the event.

Everyone we ran into yesterday shared why they march at Take Back the Night.

What’s Purple and Pink and Committed to Ending Violence?


Announcing SACHA’s FABULOUS 2014 TBTN t-shirts!

IMG_20140827_184222For the third year in a row, TBTN t-shirts are printed on union made shirts in a union shop by United Food and Commercial Workers Local 175 and United Steel Workers Local 1-500.  Thanks to Cavan for manufacturing and printing our shirts for us!

The shirts are purple with pink ink and come in both fitted and not fitted styles.  The front has this year’s Take Back the Night logo in English and ‘La rue la nuit femmes sans peur’ on the back.

Where can I buy one?
T-shirts will be available at the Take Back the Night event near the SACHA table.

How much do they cost?
We are selling the shirts are on a sliding scale for $15 for unwaged folks (which is the cost of the t-shirt) and $20 for waged folks.

Last year’s gorgeous black shirts with sparkley purple ink will be available for $5 to $10.

We have a limited amount of both 2014 and 2013 shirts…

What do you do with money raised from t-shirt sales?
We rarely make money from selling TBTN t-shirts, but if we do the profits go back into the cost of putting on an amazing Take Back the Night in Hamilton.

What about free stuff?
We totally recognize that not everyone will be able to afford $15 for a t-shirt.  At the SACHA table we have TBTN buttons for free.  This year community organizations will also have lots of free give-aways at their tables too!

How can I pay?
You can pay for your TBTN t-shirt with cash, Visa, MasterCard or a cheque made out to SACHA.