Yellow Brick House

Our Story

In the late 1970’s

Five people who had devoted their careers to helping others found each other – and their purpose – when they began sharing stories that were remarkably similar and equally heartbreaking.

Told to them in whispers, they were the pleas of women desperate, afraid and seeking help. Each had done what they could – as a police officer, nurse, and three social workers would naturally do. But it wasn’t enough. As their paths crossed at meetings and in the community, their frustration grew.

“We’ve got to be able to do more.”

Frustration turned to hope, and determination turned into action. The idea of a safe place was born. Not long after, a family with its own story of dedication to community and healing was making its own monumental decision. Dr Clayton Rose and his wife Helen were preparing to sell the family home that the good doctor had been raised in, and where he raised his children. The yellow brick house had been the home and workplace of his father – Dr. Crawford Rose – and throughout the 1950s and 1960s, it was not only a house of healing, but of refuge. Neighbours knew they could knock on the clinic door—or the front door—to receive help and support. A police car in the driveway was not cause for concern, but rather recognition that Dr. Rose was caring for a patient that needed him – regardless of how they found their way there.

The Rose family heard about the need and the plans,
and the decision was an easy one to make:

Their yellow brick house would continue to be
a place of caring, hope and love.

In the decades since, women and children have found their way to the doors of the yellow brick house on a journey that often starts with fear but ends in hope. Our five founders may have had the inspiration, but it is the community of caring and committed donors and volunteers that have allowed Yellow Brick House to continue to put out the welcome mat day after day, year after year. And we continue to draw inspiration from our amazing donors, our tireless volunteers, and the women whose determination and resilience show us again and again that we are each capable of making a difference, but together, we can make change for today and the future. Thank you!


Women and children stayed
in our shelters last year


Counselling and court support hours provide to women and children


Transitional packages to help women start rebuilding their lives