Retreats help women deal with trauma

Nine women from The Great Room enjoyed a three-day summer retreat in August at the Cariboo Log House B&B overlooking beautiful Lac La Hache.

Dina Kennedy

Special to the Tribune/Advisor

Nine women from The Great Room enjoyed a three-day summer retreat in August at the Cariboo Log House B&B overlooking beautiful Lac La Hache.

What a perfect setting to engage in friendship and to make progress that can help us to lead to bigger and better things.

This would be the perfect place to pour out unconditional love. A safe place where each woman can be themselves to share their unique challenges outside of their daily struggles.

This journey was the first for many of these women as they are not able to afford this kind of luxury.

The weather was beautiful and hot. I could hear the conversations that were coming from the van full of excitement and wonder as they pulled up my driveway to pick me up.

We arrived on time at the B&B and we were warmly greeted by the owners Wolfgang and Angie. Introductions were made and then we were shown to our rooms. Each room had its own entrance and decor. The log house was warm and comfortable. For three days this was our home and Wolfgang and Angie made sure to make us feel that way.

Their hospitality just kept coming with wonderful meals and delicious cakes to enjoy with our coffee or tea. Before the program each woman was given a pen, journal and the book called The Good Shepherd.

Our theme this year was called Stepping Stones.

Each day centred around three meals and the afternoons were loosely structured. Evenings were observed for wrap up, sharing and caring-circles where the women opened up about their daily struggles and challenges. Each woman accepted the other as they were and participated in music, the journey program The Good Shepard, painted rocks, and enjoyed a swim in Lac La Hache.

There was lots of laughter and writing in our journals. We shared our dreams, we wept with one another, we embraced, observed silence and we encouraged each other on our personal journeys. We rejoiced and supported one another.

On the last day we enjoyed a lovely bag lunch that Angie put together and headed over to the 108 Mile Heritage site for a tour.

The comments from the participants were positive — a chance for rejuvenation, a chance to relax from day to day struggles, a chance to regain a sense of hope.

The goal of these journeys is to build relationships and provide places where women can clear their minds and be away from the survival and victim mode.

The program would not be possible without community sponsorship.

Dina Kennedy is the Great Room, Linwood House Ministries co-ordinator. For more information or to help sponsor the program Kennedy can be contacted at 250-296-4372.

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