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‘Her memory is still alive’: Candace Derksen’s family rejoices as centre in their daughter’s name announces location

Candace Derksen announces the opening of the Candace House named after her daughter, Candace Dersken. .
Candace Derksen announces the opening of the Candace House named after her daughter, Candace Dersken. . Global News / File

A quiet space just steps from Winnipeg’s law courts will soon give families navigating the justice system, a room to call their own.

Candace House, named in honour of Candace Derksen, will open in the fall. On Wednesday her mom Wilma Derksen met with organizers to officially announce its location.

Derksen has dreamed for years of creating a place just for victims of crimes and their families.

“This is Candace’s legacy,” Derksen said.

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READ: Fundraiser for Candace House aims to help Manitoba Crime Victims

The 13-year-old disappeared on her walk home from school in 1984. Months later, she was found bound and frozen in a Winnipeg shed.

Her mom said in the months and years after her death they noticed how there was little space in Winnipeg’s law courts to meet with organizations who help victims and their families. Out of that, the idea for Candace House was born.

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Located at 183 Kennedy Street, the haven is just steps away from the law courts and includes couches, food, reading material and Derksen said most importantly, a quiet place to reflect.

“It’s another way of helping us as victims, who continue to live, to really gain life again. Because it’s not easy,” Derksen said.

“We just about died a lot of times along the way and it wasn’t pretty. It’s not pretty. We need a safe place to do that.”

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