North East Lincolnshire Women’s Aid offers domestic abuse survivors a safe home and support for as long as they need it. Find out more.
Almost a third of women will experience domestic abuse at some point in their lives. Abuse is often multi-faceted and may involve a partner taking control over almost every aspect of a woman’s life, including her finances. As a result, survivors who escape abusive relationships can, at first, find independent living challenging.
North East Lincolnshire Women’s Aid has been supporting domestic abuse victims since 2003. The charity takes a holistic approach to support. Alongside housing, the charity offers practical and emotional care. Each woman is assigned a key worker, who helps her to process what she’s gone through and build the skills and resilience she needs to live independently. She’s able to learn how to control her finances, manage her time and understand her rights. Children are also given the support they need to move on from their early experiences.
The charity’s refuge offers short-term, emergency accommodation. Women are then helped to find new accommodation, for example with the local council, or offered one of the charity’s move-on safe houses. North East Lincolnshire Women’s Aid is now growing its property portfolio with the help of Charity Bank. In total, Charity Bank’s loan should support the purchase of at least six new properties.
“Not long ago, North East Lincolnshire Women’s Aid only owned two properties. We now own 10 and will soon be up to 14. Everyone should be entitled to a good home, in a good area, at a fair price. The money that we borrowed from Charity Bank has enabled us to grow, which means we can offer homes to our clients that they can be proud of.”Joanna Newman, Housing Manager at North East Lincolnshire Women’s Aid
By building a property portfolio, North East Lincolnshire Women’s Aid will gain a sustainable income, enabling it to reduce its reliance on grants and donations. But more importantly, it will be able to offer domestic abuse survivors high quality homes for as long as they need them – the charity does not set limits on tenancies. Free from fear and intimidation, survivors can finally have full control over their lives.
“Recently my injuries were read out to me in a statement. They were shocking; my head had been split open twice, fractured ribs, black eyes and strangulation. Once I saw my chance and left, it was the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. When I arrived, I was welcomed by staff who saw to my every need. I wasn’t in any state of mind to do anything alone, and I didn’t have to. When I was ready to talk, I could. I think, this is the start of a new life, a stronger me, back the way I was before.
Coming here has changed my life and my children’s and that was due to the staff saying the right things at the right time and having the knowledge and understanding of domestic violence and how it affects us. Three months down the line, I am still here, but the future is bright. I don’t want to take my life, my confidence is better, my children are happy and not scared to make a noise and when I do leave here, there is still the support I need – and I know I will need it.”Wendy, a resident of North East Lincolnshire Women’s Aid
About Charity Bank
Charity Bank is the loans and savings bank owned by and committed to supporting the social sector. Since 2002, we have used our savers’ money to make more than 1,200 loans totalling over £450m to housing, education, social care, community and other social purpose organisations.
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