Covid-19 Action Fund winner: domestic abuse
The Covid-19 Action Fund provides grants for Churchill Fellows to increase their vital contribution to the national effort against Covid-19. Hundreds of pandemic projects nationwide are being run or assisted by Churchill Fellows, using the international expertise they gained during their Fellowships overseas. Here is the Action Fund recipient working on domestic abuse issues.
Becky Rogerson: preventing domestic abuse
The rate of murders linked to domestic abuse appears to have doubled during the lockdown period. Many potential victims are trapped in abusive relationships and do not have the space to make calls to helplines or visit professionals who could identify warning signs. Whilst friends and family members are encouraged to report abuse, many often don't know how or who to, and pathways can be blocked by legislative restrictions and lack of accepted practice for this amongst police and service providers. Becky Rogerson is the director of the domestic abuse charity Wearside Women in Need, based in Sunderland.
She will use her grant to promote a campaign that raises awareness and equips the community in supporting its members and reporting abuse, and to develop a model that ensures services respond to the community with open pathways and support. She will initially develop this in the north-east of England. She will provide advice, a toolkit, a helpline and website with resources to empower the local community, and she will launch a model of community support from local services and the Northumbria Police. Her aim is that this model and campaign could be replicated to other regions across the UK. Becky's Churchill Fellowship explored legal and community responses to domestic violence across North and South America.