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Grant helps secure domestic abuse support worker role

29 January 2020

A grant of £3,000 from ourselves has helped secure a vital role at Springfield Domestic Abuse Support in South Lakeland for another 12 months.

The charity needed £5,000 to part fund a domestic abuse support worker and the grant from us, along with £2,000 from Kendal Town Council, meant the charity could access £5,000 of match funding, safeguarding the role for another 12 months and increasing it to 24 hours a week.

Councillor Suzie Pye, our Portfolio Holder for Health, Wellbeing and Financial Resilience: said: "Many people in Kendal may not even be aware that Springfield exists, but for the people who come through their doors to escape abusive relationships, it is a lifeline. I am pleased as part of my SLDC portfolio, to be able to part fund a domestic abuse support worker so Springfield can continue to offer vital help and support to vulnerable women as they get back on their feet."

The domestic abuse support worker, Pam Beeston, has been in post since March last year but funding was due to run out this month.

Victoria Roberts, Springfield Strategic Service Manager, said: “The post has made a huge difference to what the Community Service can offer. Demand for our service has grown over the last few years and the funding provided by Cllr Pye and Kendal Town Council has allowed us to continue to deliver vital services to the local community. The needs of the people that we support are multiple and varied to each individual, however what they do all share in common is wanting to be  listened to, heard, believed, not judged and to be provided with a safe space to talk.”

Springfield started its Community Service in 2015, providing tailored support to women and a small number of men in South Lakeland who have experienced or are still experiencing domestic abuse. This includes one-to-one support, counselling and a range of group activities including: The Recovery Toolkit (a nationally accredited programme,) the Dream It (a weekly Drop-in), Freedom Programme (a course which focuses on developing an understanding of abuse and healthy relationships), a Self-Esteem Course and monthly mindfulness sessions.

Since the Community Service began there has been a high demand for its services. In 2018/2019 Springfield has provided 387 individual support sessions with service users from the Community Hub. When they have not been able to provide face-to-face support they have provided 61-telephone support sessions to people that could not attend the Community Hub. Springfield strives to be as accessible as possible to the community and especially those that live in rural communities with no form of transport or those with mobility issues to get to appointments.

Established in 1915, Springfield provides accommodation and community support for people whose lives have been affected by domestic violence and abuse. Its values are about making a difference for each woman who enters through its doors and caring about what she wants for her future.

The refuge provides temporary housing for women who are fleeing from abusive relationships and are at risk of becoming homeless. It is the only dedicated refuge in Cumbria and provides a safe haven to women from all over the UK. Each woman is provided with support to access benefits, reduce debt, improve their general health and wellbeing, find volunteering and work opportunities and secure accommodation.

If you, a friend or family member are a victim/survivor of domestic abuse and you would like confidential advice or support please call Springfield on 01539 726171.

Pictured (from left to right) are Councillor Suzie Pye with Pam Beeston and Victoria Roberts from Springfield.

Cllr Pye with Springfield staff

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