Frequently Asked Questions

Want to learn more about our services? Check out our FAQs below.

Can’t find the answer to your question? Reach us directly at info@sheltermovers.com.

Note: These responses aim to provide general guidance, and may change without notice.

 

Clients and Referring Agencies

We serve clients who have either found a space in a shelter and are ready to leave an abusive relationship or who are already living in a shelter or safe place. If you do not yet have a place to go, contact your local support line: 

Ontario: 1-866-863-0511 (TTY: 1-833-286-9865)

British Columbia: 211

Nova Scotia: 1-855-225-0220

If you have a shelter space, have the shelter contact us at info@sheltermovers.com or 855.203.6252 and include a call back number. We will reply within a few hours to discuss your move needs.

If you feel you are in immediate danger, dial 911 or your local police service now. 

Simply contact us at info@sheltermovers.com and include a call back number.

Yes, we provide moving and storage services at no cost.

In our initial call, we will ask questions relating to the following:

  • Security risks (status of ex-partner; presence of children)
  • Quantity and type of items to be moved
  • Preferred dates and time for the move
  • Approximate locations of each stop

Yes, we have access to trauma-informed language interpreters.

Depending on the perceived risk involved in a move, we will engage law enforcement to keep the peace during a move. Private security personnel are also engaged, as appropriate.

We do our best to help clients gather and transport their belongings, and usually will be able to move everything, but there are limits to how many vehicles and volunteers we can muster for a move. A balance can be struck between the needs of the move and our available resources during the planning of the move.

We’re happy to help survivors of abuse get to safety. The best use of our resources tends to be when moving items, but we are open to helping clients who have no belongings. Contact info@sheltermovers.com to start the discussion on how we can help.

We are happy to transport children who are accompanied by the client. We have access to car seats and booster seats, as needed.

We are happy to transport pets who are accompanied by the client. We have do not have access to pet carriers, however.

No. We serve all populations, regardless of faith, ethnicity, sexual orientation or gender identity.

We serve all populations, regardless of faith, ethnicity, sexual orientation or gender identity.

We can transport persons under 18 years of age if they are accompanied by their legal guardian.

For the safety of our volunteers and clients, we will not move:

  • Firearms
  • Ammunition
  • Alcohol
  • Illicit substances
  • Large sums of money ($10,000 or more)

According to various pieces of information (e.g. ex-partner’s whereabouts; location of client), a series of safety and security protocols are activated to help ensure the move can proceed safely. Typically, if there is a chance the ex-partner could be present, law enforcement and private security attend the move.

According to various pieces of information (e.g. ex-partner’s whereabouts; location of client), a series of safety and security protocols are activated to help ensure the move can proceed safely. Typically, if there is a chance the ex-partner could be present, law enforcement and private security attend the move.

No. We focus on supporting families fleeing violence, and does not intervene in or comment on custody disputes.

No. We serve all survivors of abuse, regardless of faith, ethnicity, sexual orientation or gender identity. Clients are referred to us by a shelter or social service agency that has agree to support them.

You know someone who needs our help? Please contact info@sheltermovers.com to start the discussion on how we can help.

Volunteers

If you’re interested in volunteering with us, fill out our form here.

We offer a list of volunteer positions, depending on your skill-set and interests. Our main areas include:

  • Moving and driving
  • Move Coordination
  • Event Planning
  • Fundraising
  • Donor relations

 

While there may be a chance volunteers will encounter the client’s ex-partner, we adhere to strict policies and procedures to ensure our volunteers and clients are safe – before, during and after each move. We also work closely with private security and law enforcement, who accompany volunteers and clients.

Given potential risks involved in some of what we do, volunteers must be 18 or older to join us.

Bringing someone to us is easy, visit our Get Involved page and let us know your preference. We will interview and register them right away. We’ll do our best to make it happen.

Unlike most organizations, our volunteers contribute as much time as they want, with no minimum. When requests for our services are received, a call-to-action is sent by email to our volunteers. If you can help, simply reply! On average, a move takes approximately 4 hours to complete, but can vary depending on the complexity and number of items to move.

Beyond seeing the immediate and lasting impact of our work, volunteering puts you in touch with a community of engaged, like-minded people. We offer ongoing training opportunities to help our people grow their knowledge of the needs and experience of survivors of abuse.

We use unmarked vehicles that do not require a special license to drive. If you haven’t driven a cargo van before, we’ll take you for few practice trips to get you comfortable.

Like all volunteers, we will conduct a phone interview with you. A mandatory volunteer orientation is offered so you can learn about our work and what to expect.

The Board meets every 4-6 weeks for approximately 2 hours. The current Board functions primarily to provide governance direction to the Executive Director rather than involving itself in operational matters.

Absolutely. Our move schedules are dependent on the availability of our clients. Thus, there are not regular shifts that you are required to sign up for.

Our movers need to be able to lift a minimum of 20lbs. If that isn’t possible, we have a variety other operational positions that may suit your skills.

We welcome all volunteers to join our community. Please email us at volunteerservices@sheltermovers.com to inquire about other volunteer opportunities we offer.

Your safety and security are our top priorities. In addition to working with private security personnel and law enforcement, we have developed protocols and policies that ensure a reduced risk for volunteers and clients. Mandatory training and education are provided to help inform our volunteers on potential risks, and how to work with their Move team to prevent and manage risk situations.

You can learn more about volunteering and fill out an application here.

Donors

Visit our donations page. All online donations are processed securely through canadahelps.org.

 

We rely on the kindness of those who share our vision for labour, staff and financial support. We currently receive no funding from any level of government and are fully donor-funded. To support our mission, please visit our donations page.

No. We’re a privately run, incorporated charitable foundation. Our Canada Revenue Agency business number is #776372492RR0001.

No. We serve all populations, regardless of faith, ethnicity, sexual orientation or gender identity.

Yes, for donations totalling at least $25.00 annually.

More than 95% of your donation goes to serving clients. We operate with low administrative costs and work hard to ensure your donation goes to those we serve.

While any and all donations and contributions are appreciated, a move costs approximately $200. Costs include truck rentals, insurance and packing materials. This service is 100% free for our clients.

To donate via the Canada Helps website, click here.

Media

Yes, we have logos, videos, photos to accompany all interviews. Please contact our Marketing & Communications Director at media@sheltermovers.com, with “MEDIA REQUEST” in the subject line to ensure a quick response.

Yes. Please contact our Marketing & Communications Director at media@sheltermovers.com, with “MEDIA REQUEST” in the subject line to ensure a quick response.

For media inquiries, contact our Marketing & Communications Director at media@sheltermovers.com

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