Foyle Women’s Aid appeal for support for Christmas campaign

This Christmas will be different for us all, but for some women and children living with domestic violence they face being trapped with their abuser with little opportunity of respite.
Marie Brown, CEO, Foyle Women's AidMarie Brown, CEO, Foyle Women's Aid
Marie Brown, CEO, Foyle Women's Aid

Others will flee to the safety of one of the refuges operated by Foyle Women’s Aid.

Staff at the charity will work around the clock this festive season to ensure their services remain available for women who need them most.

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But they desperately need the public’s assistance this year as they seek to help women in the Derry, Strabane, Limavady and Dungiven areas due to the impact of the Covid pandemic on their fundraising activities.

Foyle Women’s Aid CEO, Marie Brown said: “We are asking you to donate money through our JustGiving Christmas Campaign page or to buy vouchers and send them to us so we can enable women to buy whatever they need for themselves and their children.

“Normally we would welcome toys and hampers from the public at this time of the year but due to the restrictions, it is important for us to minimise footfall at our offices in order to keep everyone safe.

“Foyle Women’s Aid works hard to provide for women and children who are in our accommodations at Christmas. We provide everything from Christmas dinner, in partnership with Tesco, through to financial help with the purchase of toys for children and fuel to heat homes, as fuel poverty is a real issue in this area.”

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Marie said that every penny donated will help Women’s Aid deliver the care and support needed to keep women and children safe and well.

“We will strive to ensure that no woman or child engaged with our service will go without this festive season.”

Marie also encouraged local businesses to make a donation to Women’s Aid this year.

“We would also be very grateful if businesses could make a donation to us this year in lieu of corporate gifts or perhaps friends and families could join to support our work through our JustGiving page. We also recognise that this is a very challenging time for everyone, and we are very thankful to local people for supporting the work of Foyle Women’s Aid.”

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The ongoing pandemic has brought the area’s high domestic abuse statistics into sharp focus.

Figures released recently by the PSNI reveal that from October 1, 2019 to September 30, 2020, in the Derry and Strabane area, there were 3,191 domestic abuse incidents recorded.

This was an increase of 115 on the previous year.

The number of domestic abuse crimes rose to 2,016, an increase of 376 on the previous 12 months.

The alarming statistics have prompted Women’s Aid NI to launch a major campaign aimed at highlighting the deteriorating situation.

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‘Unlock Your Lockdown’ was also launched to provide female victims of domestic abuse with reassurance that vital help and support is available to them.

To donate to Foyle Women’s Aid visit can also text FWAD02 and an amount to 70070. Vouchers and cheques can be made payable to Foyle Women’s Aid and sent to Pathways, 24 Pump Street, Derry. BT48 6JG