Raising awareness of domestic abuse on International Women's Day
As part of this year’s International Women’s Day, the Ynys Môn Domestic Abuse Forum, together with the Anglesey’s Domestic Abuse Co-ordinator, Maria Pritchard, are supporting a local media campaign hosted by MônFM, to raise awareness of the plight of domestic abuse victims locally.
The broadcast campaign will promote the work of local agencies collaborating to tackle domestic abuse.
The Anglesey Domestic Abuse Forum, which was the first of its kind to be established in Wales in 1995, hosts numerous key agencies dedicated in the raising awareness of and eradicating domestic abuse.
The Forum has adopted the Home Office definition for Domestic Abuse which is “Any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse (psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional) between adults who are or have been intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender or sexuality.”
The Forum is Chaired by Anne St Paul from Anglesey Social Services and facilitated by the Anglesey Domestic Abuse Co-ordinator, Maria Pritchard. Its objectives are to raise awareness of Domestic Abuse across the local population and multi-agency settings, and to develop and support initiatives such as the Independent Domestic Violence Advisor service, specifically for the purposes of tackling domestic abuse.
It also comprises a range of statutory and third-sector who are members of the Community Safety Partnership, including County Council departments, North Wales Police, Health Board, Mental Health, Hafan Cymru, Medrwn Môn and the local Domestic Abuse service provider, Gorwel.
Anne St Paul explained, “The Forum is actively promoting more awareness of Domestic Abuse issues on Anglesey and are proud to be participating in these initiatives”.
Domestic Abuse Co-ordinator, Maria Pritchard, added “We feel that International Women’s Day provides us with an excellent opportunity to highlight the sensitive plight of domestic abuse victims and their families through this media campaign - we will capture the moment to promote the invaluable contribution from multi-agency partners who tackle domestic abuse issues across the island.”
Other examples of recent successful initiatives include the development of a Telecare system and lock-fitting service for high risk victims of domestic abuse and a high profile joint county awareness campaign undertaken during last year’s Rugby Six Nations Campaign aimed at targeting potential perpetrators.
The Forum has a three year strategic action plan which provides support for local victims and their children, improving the responses of local Health and Criminal Justice Agencies and preventing domestic abuse and violence against women through raising awareness.
Maria Pritchard has also recently worked in partnership with the Farmwatch scheme to target potential victims in rural areas and she is developing a domestic abuse web page which will be hosted on the Isle of Anglesey County Council. Other projects include a training program for school staff on how to potentially identify the effects of domestic abuse within school children to support child victims any associated care needs.
If you or anyone you know may be suffering from domestic abuse, please do not suffer in silence. Contact the bilingual All Wales Domestic Abuse & Sexual Violence Helpline on 0808 80 10 800. All calls are confidential and the helpline is available 24 hours a day. Anglesey’s Domestic Abuse Co-ordinator, Maria Pritchard, can be contacted on (01248) 752876.