Domestic abuse, and violence against women and girls (VAWG)

This theme-specific guidance must be read in conjunction with the main guidance notes

We are aware of the experiences from other areas where restrictions were brought in earlier that these periods of quarantine will see increased risk to people affected by domestic abuse and all forms of VAWG, and that early indications suggest a rise in demand for support across the sector as people are isolated in situations where they are at risk of violence or abuse. We also recognise that some groups (e.g. BAME women, LGBT+, disabled people, people who are undocumented, or people with No Recourse to Public Funds) will experience higher risks and/or face further barriers to reporting, and need focused services to support them. We have also heard about the increased costs of providing services (e.g. to ensure refuge accommodation is deep-cleaned, or providing services one-to-one rather than in groups) and adapting to online environments which may be difficult for people to access. We are particularly keen to fund work that:

  • Helps organisations respond to increases in demand for support in the immediate period, including different forms of support, and prepares them for a more rapid increase in demand when social distancing is relaxed;
  • Supports groups to carry out advocacy work with people affected by domestic abuse and VAWG to highlight issues and achieve policy and service change;
  • Helps organisations support groups where there is involvement with statutory services to help manage/reduce risk and safety planning for them and their families;
  • Enables remote access to services (including where internet access is not possible, for example working alongside non-specialist organisations to reach people in communities);
  • Ensures language- or community-specific services can target support at groups who are known to be at higher risk (including coordinating these activities effectively through partnership across sectors or organisations);
  • Provides appropriate wellbeing support (including clinical supervision if appropriate) for people providing support remotely without the back-up of colleagues or other systems;
  • Covers the additional costs services are experiencing (e.g. deep cleaning of accommodation, or provision of PPE); and/or
  • Enables the safe and effective delivery of services via digital channels.