‘Domestic Abuse is Child Abuse’ says Dove House campaign

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A hard hitting campaign with the message that: ‘Domestic Abuse is Child Abuse Christmas campaign’ is being highlighted this week and throughout the month of December by the Dove House Women’s Advocacy Project.

Niamh Canavan, Dove House Women’s Advocacy worker said: “For most of us, Christmas conjures up images of smiles, mulled wine and crackers but for some, Christmas can be the most feared time of the year. Domestic Abuse rises considerably during the festive period. The free-flowing alcohol, financial burden and spending more time at home in close proximity are all added pressures to a relationship. Our message is that Domestic Abuse is Child Abuse. Even if a child is not physically hurt, the result of witnessing any sort of Domestic Abuse may have lasting impact on their lives.

“Our campaign will be located in shopping centres and in Toys R Us during the coming weeks. In many abusive relationships women are often subject to stringent control about where they are and what they are doing, so by setting up in shopping centres we are giving victims of domestic abuse the opportunity to come and speak with us without arousing suspicion. It is also important to be clear that Domestic Abuse is a year round problem that affects all sections of the community. We do however want to highlight the rising rate of Domestic Abuse during the Christmas period and bring about a change of attitudes.”

The Women’s Advocacy Project based in Dove House aims to provide support to women who are experiencing or have experienced domestic abuse. We deliver a community based wrap around service that centers on a self-help ethos.

The group’s role is to signpost victims to specialist services and provide ongoing support to them through a particularly difficult period in their lives.

Anyone experiencing domestic abuse is urged to seek support from any of the numbers below:

Advocacy Project, Dove House (9-5.30pm) 028 7126 9327

Women’s Aid Federation (Domestic & Sexual Violence helpline) 0808 802 1414

Foyle Women’s Aid (Free Phone) 0800 917 1414

If you would like further information on the project or would like to make a referral please do not hesitate to contact Niamh. Referrals are always welcome and can be made in person or by contacting Dove House on 028 71269327 in the strictest of confidence. Mail niamhdovehouse@gmail.com