Oasis Society for the Spiritual Health of Victoria
The Oasis Society for the Spiritual Health of Victoria works with vulnerable Indigenous people living on the streets of Victoria, BC, and those involved in street life. Program objectives are to foster a sense of belonging in a caring, inclusive and culturally appropriate community, nurture the establishment and growth of authentic relationships between people from different walks of life, AND host events that encourage connections to self, others, extended family, nature, elders and ceremony.
Grant Program: Awakening
Year of Grant: 2018-2019
Grant Amount: $2,000
Communion of Heart – Pathway to Peace
Nine women who had recent homelessness experiences were brought together for a healing journey retreat.
There were many beautiful ways in which the women supported and showed kindness to one another. One woman with severe anxiety who had her own room, offered it to another woman who was 26 days sober and did not have a good sleep. They would make snacks for each other and share a skill they had, such as baking, dream catcher making, or beading. However, on occasion, tensions ran high. One afternoon, some of the women were taken into Sooke for ice cream and a change of scenery. This allowed everyone to cool off and when they arrived back, the energy had regained its peaceful aura.
Throughout the day, the Indigenous Healer and Elder, Gerry Ambers, met with each woman individually to perform a ceremony or simply provide a chance to talk.
Many of the women who attended either knew Gerry personally, knew of her, or had family that spoke highly of her. This broke down many barriers with the women, and she was able to provide the one on one time that many of the women desperately needed. A family of women was created by the retreat’s end.