Grant helps project meet growing demand for domestic violence support during pandemic

Large table in an indoor domestic space. On the table on the left are ten or more large brown paper gift bags tied with ribbons, next to them plant pots with seed packets inside and to the right colourful sets of paints and brushes, pencils and paper

A recent grant of £20,390 went to Southside Family Project to support people affected by domestic violence and abuse. This will help them offer specialist support for families across B&NES facing multiple and complex difficulties and victims of domestic abuse during the Covid-19 crisis.

How the funding will offer immediate help 

The funding will help their work to offer:

  • Individual therapeutic sessions for children and young people affected by trauma during the pandemic
  • Stationery and activity packs for lockdown home schooling,
  • IT equipment and
  • Idva (independent domestic violence advisors) training for five workers.
Adult white woman standing at a table with arts and crafts materials. She is smiling and tying a ribbon to a wooden box
Southside Family Project – making up activity packs

Workers ‘stretched beyond capacity’

Penny McKissock, Founder and CEO at Southside said: “The grant will support children, young people and families in local communities throughout B&NES who have been affected by abuse and trauma during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Our workers are supporting a growing number of children and young people who need additional therapeutic support at this difficult time to help their future development. The grant will also fund resources for over 100 children now being home schooled again as those we provided during the first lockdown have run out and many families we support have limited resources at home for their children’s learning.

“The need for Southside’s services has increased significantly during this crisis, with a surge in domestic violence as reflected throughout the UK. Referrals are increasing with more complex issues: increased mental health challenges, self-harm, drug/alcohol addiction and children and young people witnessing or being involved in violence.

“Our Idva (independent domestic violence advisors) trained workers are stretched beyond capacity. The grant will help fund SafeLives Idva training for five workers which will help them to provide the best possible support for domestic abuse victims, survivors and their children. This also helps build Southside’s long-term capacity to meet the increased need because of this crisis.”

Far-reaching impact of lockdown

Ronnie Brown from Quartet Community Foundation said: “For young people who witness domestic violence, being locked out of schools and unable to socialise leaves them alone with their concerns. We’re really glad we can support local charitable organisations like Southside who make such a difference to the lives of local young people and their families.”

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