Candace House is more just than an idea that one day became a reality.
It involved a family experiencing significant trauma due to the murder of their daughter and the many years spent involved with a cold and relentless justice system. It involved their realization of the need for respite from that justice system and the resilience to fight for their vision to be made a reality. It also involved tremendous amounts of time and energy from dedicated staff, board members and volunteers to carry out discussions, consultations, and research with family survivors of criminal fatality, community partners, and intergovernmental stakeholders to find and create the right space.
To make sure that Candace House would meet the needs of the community it would serve, we hired Dr. Barb Toews to conduct research with the families, friends, and loved ones we intended to work with. Her research included looking at victims' perceptions of justice building architecture and what they would like to see in a space of refuge away from the justice system.
If you'd like to read more about the research that took place in the creation of Candace House, you can read Barb's articles below.
‘I see all the life’: designing spaces of respite for survivors of violence, 2019.
‘It’s a dead place’: A qualitative exploration of violence survivors’ perceptions of justice architecture, 2018.