Safe House for West Cork Update 2020!
As previously mentioned in the West Cork Whisper in November 2019, WCWAV are delighted to have secured funding to purchase a Safe House for women and children escaping domestic violence here in West Cork. This is the biggest development in the history of the service and we look forward to being able to offer this additional service as part of WCWAV. Unfortunately, with Covid-19 our plans have been delayed, but it is still very much a priority for our service, to get the Safe House up and running as soon as possible. The Safe House is needed in West Cork now more than ever due to Covid-19 which has further entrapped women and children in domestic violence.
Recently, we recruited a safe house support worker, Stephanie, who will be working with the women and children who need access to Safe House Accommodation. Already Stephanie is working with other DV services to learn from their experiences of providing safe houses, making major inroads into developing the policies for the Safe House while also actively searching for properties.
It can be extremely challenging for any family moving from one accommodation to another, but especially in the case of escaping domestic violence. This can be traumatic for the whole family and our goal is to provide holistic support for each step of the process. The safe house support worker role will be to make the family/woman feel comfortable and safe in their new accommodation while also giving them the information and assistance to move onto independent living and housing elsewhere. Stephanie’s key areas of work will be to:
• Work collaboratively with other agencies in West Cork to build a wraparound support system for women and children using the safe house, in order to give them the confidence to move onto independent living.
• Linking our clients in with various specialist agencies and services they require.
• To assess the woman (and her children’s) needs to create a client centred care plan.
• To help to build up the woman’s confidence and self-esteem by linking her in with local services and provide accompaniment where necessary.
• To work with occupants of the safe house on a safety plan and aftercare plan to help their transition to an independent life.
There is still some way to go yet, but with a specialist worker now recruited, resourced by Tusla, the Safe House project can start to move forward and make this project a reality for West Cork.
We would like to thank the people in West Cork for their extreme generosity over the last few months. Anyone wishing to help by donating, sponsoring or fundraising or the safe house should contact our office on 027-53847