News Release: Iris Kirby House Launches New Brand and Programming

28 Jul News Release: Iris Kirby House Launches New Brand and Programming


Tuesday, July 28, 2015 – For more than 30 years, Iris Kirby House (IKH) has transformed the lives of thousands of women and children. Today, the shelter shared its own transformation –the launch of enhanced programming and a new brand.

Programming currently offered at IKH, and its sister shelter O’Shaughnessy House (Carbonear), is being expanded. IKH has developed a new, comprehensive Empowerment Series to help break the cycle of violence for women and children. The series of three programs will focus on education and economics. This will allow for greater time and focus on critical areas such as recognizing the signs and affects of violence, self-care, employment supports, and financial independence. The shelter is also launching a newly developed Children’s Services Program and Youth Group, led by a Child and Youth Care Coordinator. A mental health program, under the supervision of a registered on staff mental health nurse, supports each program.

“We are constantly reviewing our programs internally and in consultation with our community partners to ensure what we offer reflects the needs of society, the needs of women and children, and their feedback,” said Gail Tobin, Chief Executive Officer. “We undertook a review of our programs and services to ensure they were further aligned with the needs of the community and our mission and vision as an organization. I’m pleased to see the new programming being offered to strengthen the support we can provide in the community.”

The new brand represents the change a woman undergoes while in the care and support of Iris Kirby House. A butterfly icon is a beautiful metaphor for the transformative process a woman makes when she leaves the shelter to begin a new life free of violence.

“Iris Kirby House is more than a shelter; it is a place where positive change is happening,” said the Honourable Steve Kent, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health and Community Services. “Today’s launch represents a new beginning for the women and children who seek help here and further strengthens the support that is offered to them at the shelter as they work to live a life free of violence.”

The enhanced programming is currently being piloted with all modules expected to be offered in late fall. The new brand will be reflected in the organization’s website, brochures, and letterhead.

About Iris Kirby House:

Iris Kirby House (IKH) provides shelter to women with or without children who are experiencing domestic violence (physical, psychological, emotional, sexual and economic). The St. John’s facility hosts a model of two units, one for single women and one for women with children.

The St. John’s site and its sister shelter, O’Shaughnessy House, in Carbonear offer a total of 47 emergency shelter beds. Both shelters are staffed 24/7 there is also a crisis phone line offered 24/7. In addition to the emergency beds, IKH operates second stage housing units in the St. John’s, Mount Pearl and Carbonear areas. The new model in St. John’s has four self-contained, supportive housing units adjoined to the shelter, the first of its kind in the province’s history.

Media Contacts:

Gail TobinChief Executive Officer
Iris Kirby House
Phone: (709) 722-8272
Christina AdamsOwner & Strategist
Antenna Social Media & Design
Phone: (709) 682-4054
Tina Williams
Director of Communications
Department of Health and Community Services
709-729-1377, 728-2837
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