Services I Can Use
You can ring 07718657160 to talk to the RAISE team who provide adult services or call the Early Intervention team who provide services for young people on 07718657157. These are open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.
The One Stop Shop
A One Stop Shop is a free and confidential advice service. You can meet a range of professionals that will be able to give you face-to-face advice about your situation. This is often the best place to start getting help.
Who is it for?
This service is open to everyone - no appointment is required, just turn up. These buildings will have disability access.
When and Where?
There are One Stop Shops all over Kent – you can find the one closest to you at here.
Independent Domestic Violence Advisers (IDVA)
IDVAs are specialist support workers. They offer intensive short term support that will help you with safety planning, represent your needs at meetings and help you through the court process if you have made the decision to prosecute your abuser.
Who is it for?
IDVAs work with all victims of domestic violence, men and women, regardless of gender identity, health needs, substance misuse or mental health needs.
If you would like to access this service visit What We Do, Adult Services.
If your abuser has assaulted you or you are afraid for your own or for others’ safety you can call the police. The police have the power to provide you with immediate protection at any time of the day or night. If you can, report an incident to the police straight away. In a non-emergency you can contact the police on 101 or visit your local station. If you need an interpreter, the police will be able to provide you with one.
Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme - If you want to find out if a current or former partner has been violent in a previous relationship you have the right to ask the police, who will carry out checks. If they show that the person has a record of abusive offences, or there is other information to indicate that they pose a risk, the Police will consider sharing this information with you. You can call 101 or go to a police station to make an application.
A Refuge is a safe house where women and children escaping domestic abuse can stay for a while.
You can move in to a refuge the same day you decide to leave. The locations of refuges are kept private for the safety of all residents, for the same reason you will go to a refuge that is not close to your current home.
What is a refuge like?
Just like the people we support, no refuge is the same. Some are purpose-built, self-contained flats whilst others are more like a large house with a bedroom to yourself and your children and communal kitchens, dining and living rooms.
How do I get a Refuge space?
The 24-hour National Domestic Violence Freephone Helpline will help you find a refuge space if you call 0808 20000 247. The police, social services and other support services can also give you advice on where to find support and advice regarding domestic abuse and refuges.
Who can go?
Refuges will admit self-defining women, no matter what background, age or orientation however different refuges cater for people with different needs. For instance if you have mobility issues there may be some refuges that are not suitable but you will be directed somewhere that can meet your needs.
There are some refuges that will not be able to admit you if you have been violent in the past or have substance misuse issues; this may mean that a service will have to find a different way to support you.
What happens next?
Once a refuge space has been found, a member of staff from that refuge will call you to take a referral from you. This process is to gather some information about you and your situation to ensure they are able to offer you the right support.
If you are offered a place you will usually be expected to arrive at the refuge either that day or the next.
When you arrive you will be asked to sign a license agreement which will include the terms under which you can stay in the refuge, how long you can stay and any necessary rules to ensure the safety of yourself and other residents. Despite there being some rules, you will be free to go about your daily life.
All refuges have trained staff. Support Workers are able to help with a wide range of issues and provide you with practical and emotional support. They will help you settle in and could assist in applications for welfare benefits; contacting solicitors; local doctors and schools; provide advice about education and employment opportunities, future housing and make any other relevant referrals.
The Freedom Programme
The Freedom Programme is open to any women who wants to know more about domestic abuse. The aim of the group is to help women understand the beliefs held by abusers and the effects upon children, whilst helping them gain the confidence to improve the quality of their lives and identify the local resources that can help.
If you would like to join the waiting list you can send us this form.
Services in Kent
For more information about services in your local area visit www.domesticabuseservices.org.uk
The Domestic Abuse Support in Kent website, provides advice and information on services for victims, friends & family, and perpetrators of Domestic Abuse.
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