Missed Opportunities

"I have had an amazing opportunity of working with Dawn Novak and her husband over the past 2 years.

I currently hold the Community Safety Officer position for the Tecumseh OPP. One of my roles is to provide presentations to high school students at my two local high schools with respect to relationships and domestic violence. Last year I was introduced to Dawn Novak at a presentation at our Orillia Headquarters. I soon learned what an incredible woman she was.

I researched her foundation and decided that she would be a good fit for my presentations at my high schools. I arranged to have Dawn present to the entire school at our high schools. Due to the success of these presentations, my partners in other locations within our county requested that she attend their high schools the following year. She spoke to over 5000 students during this period of time. Her presentations were well received and very impactful on the students. She is an absolute joy to work with."

- PC Karen Sinnaeve, Community Safety Officer, Tecumseh OPP

"Dawn Novak became an anti-violence activist in the most difficult way a person can experience, through the murder of her daughter Natalie by an ex-boyfriend. Her vision has been honed by her drive to understand the dynamics of gender based violence and make sense, if such a thing is possible, of Natalie’s death. Her exploration has led her to examine our criminal justice system in detail, and to know what went wrong and what might have been done differently to protect Natalie. She has developed a fine analysis of the system and all its present failings and gradual successes. She speaks with clarity, vision and conviction, to both adult and youth audiences. Dawn’s project “If You See It, Speak It” along with the film “Nat’s Story” are an enlightening journey into understanding how prevalent gender based violence is, and what we can all do to eradicate it."
Lauren Power, Director
Muskoka Parry Sound Sexual Assault Services



Healthy Relationships

"Dawn brings her experience together, 30+ years as a formal educator and her personal tragedy, to give the most engaging presentation about developing and maintaining healthy relationships. Her multi-media presentation provides us with insight into what healthy relationships are and why they are so crucial to our existence."

– Kelly DeMos, Teacher, Bracebridge & Muskoka Lakes Secondary School


"l really loved the presentation. Dawn showed us what a healthy loving relationship is. She showed me to be cautious and safe with relationships. She is an inspiration to us all. She is unbelievable. She is so passionate about speaking with us and many other people of all ages. Thank you, Dawn."

- Emily, High School Student

"Dawn is an amazing speaker. She has lots of experience and knowledge on the subject. She speaks with emotion and inspiration. It’s very important for kids our age or any age to learn this. l am grateful there is someone here to do this."

- Maddy, High School Student


"I learned a lot. I realized how bad an abusive relationship can get and what the signs are of a bad relationship. I also learned the differences between a healthy and an unhealthy relationship."

- Abby, High School Student

"Dawn Novak’s presentation opened my eyes to another world. Abusive relationships are more common than l originally thought and the awareness Dawn Novak is raising is important for all people to hear."

- Saylor, High School Student


"I learned the qualities of a healthy, unhealthy and abusive relationship. I learned how to help myself if I was in a dangerous situation in a relationship. I learned relationships can change from one type to another. Dawn Novak shared this information amazingly well.  Her own daughter’s story and her experiences trying to deal with it really created an awareness. It opened my eyes and my friends' to realize this is a big issue."

- Emily, High School Student

"Dawn Novak wasn’t a person that lectured us. She spoke about a serious topic but made you feel comfortable enough to ask questions. You could feel her passion for this topic. The presentation made me aware of these situations. It taught me the differences between equality and controlling. A very eye opening presentation!."

- Fiona, High School Student