At some point in their lives, 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men will experience domestic abuse. Domestic abuse includes a range of behaviours including actual or threatened physical, emotional, psychological, sexual or financial abuse. It can be perpetrated by a current or ex-partner, a family member or someone with whom there is, or has been, a close relationship.
If you need support or advice about something that is happening to you, or a friend or relative, there are several places that you can turn.
Domestic Abuse Volunteer Support Service
DAVSS is a local charity which provides support for people in the Tunbridge Wells and Sevenoaks area who are suffering domestic abuse. Highly trained volunteers offer advice and support to both women and men initially via the helpline, 01892 570538. The helpline is manned from 10am – 1pm, Monday – Friday.
To find out more about the service or becoming a volunteer, refer to their website www.davss.org.uk
The Freedom Programme is a safe group for any woman who has experienced or is experiencing domestic abuse. There are several programmes a year and you can self-refer to the group. For more information, contact the Co-ordinator on 01892 502 075.
Community Domestic Abuse Perpetrators Programme
The Community Domestic Abuse Perpetrators Programme is a voluntary group work programme designed specifically for men whose violence and abuse is directed towards their female partners and ex-partners. The programme focuses on the beliefs and intentions which underpin abusive behaviour and on the non-controlling behaviours which can be used instead. A range of techniques and materials are used, such as videos, group discussion, skills practice, handouts and homework.
Men who live in Tonbridge and Malling, Tunbridge Wells or Sevenoaks can be referred to the programme. However, they must accept that their behaviour is a problem, accept responsibility for ending their abusive behaviour towards their partner/ex-partner and be prepared to agree to the conditions of attendance.
For further information contact the programme manager on 07933 359210.
Counselling Directory is a confidential service that encourages those in distress to seek help. The directory contains information on many different types of distress, as well as articles, news, and events. All counsellors have provided the service with relevant qualifications and insurance cover or proof of membership of a professional body.
Women's Aid Federation of England (Women's Aid) is the national charity working to end domestic violence against women and children. The charity's mission is to advocate for abused women and children and to ensure their safety by working locally and nationally. Women's Aid offers support and a place of safety to abused women and children by providing refuges and other services. The charity also empowers women affected by domestic violence to determine their own lives and recognise and meet the needs of children affected by domestic violence. They also promote policies and practices to prevent domestic violence and help raise awareness of the extent and impact of domestic violence in society.
The national helpline offers advice and support to anyone experiencing domestic violence. Refuge provides safe, emergency accommodation through a network of refuges throughout the UK. It also offers a children's programme, individual and group counselling for women who have suffered abuse, help with resettlement and an outreach project for women from ethnic minority communities.
The Hidden Hurt site has been written by a survivor of domestic violence, and provides advice and information to those who are in an abusive relationship.
A registered charity running a UK LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) domestic violence helpline. Our LGBT operators are highly trained and experienced in the specifics of LGBT domestic violence, with many coming from front line services. They understand the issues LGBT callers will face and go through extended training to provide the best support they can. As members of the Telephone Helplines Association we follow their operating guidelines to, "...ensure the highest quality response for callers seeking information, advice and help...".
Protection Against Stalking
Protection against Stalking (formerly CRT Trust) works jointly with relevant agencies to increase awareness of stalking and harassment to ensure victims receive all the protection and help they need to rebuild their lives and live free of fear.