Domestic violence victims gets food parcel boost

Domestic violence victims in North Wales are being given emergency food parcels and supplies after extra funding.

Domestic Abuse Safety Unit (DASU) in North Wales is continuing to help women, men and their children affected by domestic violence across Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire and Wrexham.

Last year they worked with 3,500 victims and DASU’s head of operations Rhian Lewis said Covid-19 was placing an increasing strain on families.

“We’re expecting to see a big surge in referrals after the lockdown,” she said. “At the moment it’s difficult for victims to find a safe opportunity to reach out for support. From the calls that we are getting to our community and outreach services, they are more complex due to risk, increased feelings of anxiety and an increase in a sense of isolation.

“We’ve continued to offer emergency refuge accommodation and support services to victims throughout the lockdown. We do face-to-face support if it’s needed but most of it is done over the phone or virtually due to Government restrictions. 

“Many victims are facing financial hardship. They also may have lost their job, seen their role furloughed, and are basically really struggling financially. At one point the food bank in Conwy was closed, although it’s now reopened.”

DASU offered basic food packs for residents but admitted their stocks were running low when they applied to the Steve Morgan Foundation for help.

Rhian said: “We were awarded £12,000 and it was an absolute lifesaver. The Steve Morgan Foundation has helped us to continue to support victims and their families during this pandemic.

“It makes such a difference to the people we support. We had feedback from a lady yesterday who said she couldn’t afford to buy food.

“We know that our services are needed more than ever right now and we want to reassure all victims that we are still here offering support and safety options.”

DASU has been in operation for 31 years and has over 50 members of staff. It also manages the only male domestic abuse refuge in North Wales.

Steve Morgan, founder of the Steve Morgan Foundation, said: “Protecting and helping the victims of domestic violence in these difficult times is absolutely critical.”

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