Strategic Plan



New Beginnings means many things to The Denise House. It represents the life-changing care and support women and children receive at our shelter and through our community services. It signals growth on the horizon, as we undertake our capital building project. And it reflects our re-commitment to community partnership, ensuring we continue to offer meaningful, co-designed programming in Durham Region.


“The Denise House provides a vital service in the Durham Region. To ensure we are meeting the needs of our community, we have developed a responsive and comprehensive Strategic Plan, called New Beginnings. Our Plan was informed by clients, Board members and staff. It will guide us over the next five years, including building a new shelter. I look forward to seeing the new Strategic Plan come to life, helping us champion caring, connectedness, sustainability and advocacy within our community. This is how we will continue making a difference for women and children who are victims of gender-based violence.” – Diane Dickson-Kailan, Chair, Board of Directors, The Denise House

The Denise House is embarking on an ambitious, five-year strategic plan:

New Beginnings


The 2022-2027 Strategic Plan maps out our future, leveraging our strengths, advancing our role as sector leaders and advocates, and positioning us to meet the increasing demands of our community. Under the leadership of our Board of Directors, and in consultation with staff, our new Strategic Plan was developed in 2021-2022, and we are pleased to officially launch this year!


Our Plan includes four strategic directions:

  1. Be caring: Provide exceptional care
  2. Be connected: Build a strong, engaged and connected team
  3. Be sustainable: Plan for sustainable revenue and expansion
  4. Be a strong voice: Advocate with our community partners

Our new strategic directions focus on our staff, our clients, our growth and our community. Each direction includes specific objectives and targeted outcomes, which we will track progress against to ensure accountability and transparency.






 Strategic Direction #1 - Be Caring

Our Goals:

1.1 Increase quality and capacity of our programs to meet the needs of our clients

1.2 Build and imprement an evaluation framework




Strategic Direction #2 - Be Connected

Our Goals:

2.1 Build and execute a recruitment and retention plan for part-time and full-time staff, students, and volunteers, including Board of Directors

2.2 Enhance staff safety and well-being.




Strategic Direction #3 - Be Sustainable

Our Goals:

3.1 Increase fundraising and donations for operation.

3.2 Explore opportunities for sustainable revenue increase through additional grants.

3.3 Plan and execute a capital campaign.




Strategic Direction #4 - Be a Strong Voice

Our Goals:

4.1 Leverage community partnerships with Region of Durham and other community tables.

4.2 Raise awareness of gender-based violence and its impact in our community.




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