Support if you are suffering from Domestic Violence
Independent Domestic Violence Advisor (IDVA) Service
Call 0121 553 0090 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
“She (IDVA) has been exceptionally supportive and there for me at any point when I needed her. She reassured me on many occasions that the choice had to be mine. She was not judgmental and understood why my decision was so hard.”
Sandwell Women’s Aid offer the nationally recognised Independent Domestic Violence Service.
IDVAs are trained specialists who provide a service to victims of domestic abuse who are at risk of harm from intimate partners, ex-partners or family members, with the aim of securing their safety and the safety of their children. You can access an IDVA’s support by contacting us directly, or through referral by other agency professionals such as health workers or the police.
The support that an IDVA can provide includes:
- Listening to you and being there for you
- Advice and support planning tailored to your needs
- Risk assessments and safety planning including practical steps for protection to keep you and your children safe
- Support and advice through the Criminal Justice system
- Information about Non Molestation Orders
- Signposting and assisting access to other agencies who can help e.g. Refuge, housing, immigration, counselling and legal services
- Maximising your safety by working closely with other agencies to reduce the risk of harm that you face, representing you at Multi Agency Risk Assessment Conference (MARAC)
- Referral for one-to-one counselling
- Group work and activities including confidence building, the Freedom Programme, Expect Respect programme and Health and Wellbeing
Although IDVAs work closely with other organisations to ensure you get the best support, they are independent of all statutory agencies including the Police, Local Authority and Social Services. All services are confidential and follow professional codes of practice.
Sandwell Women’s Aid IDVAs can also help a victim to gather vital evidence to support their case:
Visual Evidence for Victims Project (VEV)
VEV is for women who do not wish to go to the police at this stage, but who would like a photographic record to be kept of injuries caused through domestic violence. The VEV Project provides opportunities for victims of crimes perpetrated through domestic violence, homophobia and racial harassment to have their injuries recorded by agencies other than the police.
We now have number of specially adapted cameras at various sites within the organisation and we can make arrangements with any woman we are supporting to have photographs taken at a safe and convenient place and time.