Hart District Council has led on an innovative project bid to prevent domestic abuse and support victims across Hampshire and Dorset, securing £1,297,125 of funding.
The funding has been awarded by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government to support people suffering domestic abuse and introduce new initiatives focussed on early intervention, keeping victims of domestic abuse safe in their homes and is a continuation of the Making Safe Scheme.
This new funding will allow the Making Safe Scheme to operate in Hampshire for another 18 months, expand into Dorset and the Isle of Wight. The scheme was set up in 2015, by Hart District Council, as a project to support victims of domestic abuse by having dedicated outreach workers employed by You Trust and Southern Domestic Abuse Service who work with the Blue Lamp Trust fitters to fit security measures into the homes of those who are threatened by domestic abuse, to keep them safe.
Speaking about the funding, Cllr Stuart Bailey, Cabinet Member for Housing at Hart District Council, said: “It’s fantastic news that we have been successful in bidding for this project. We estimate that nearly 1,800 people will be helped by the Making Safe Regional Hub. As well as this, the introduction of additional outreach for isolated communities, plus an accommodation aspect for people who are normally excluded from mainstream refuge accommodation will be a great addition to this scheme. My thanks to the Hart Housing team who have continued to deliver outstanding services, not just for Hart, but across Hampshire.”
The new initiatives that will be adopted as part of the scheme include early intervention in hospitals, GP surgeries and other community health care settings and specialist refuge, to increase by 24 bed spaces per year, with the possibility of bringing a further 12 bed spaces on the Isle of Wight.
Speaking about the funding Housing Minister Heather Wheeler MP said: “Domestic abuse is a devastating crime, which shatters the lives of survivors and their families. It is our duty to ensure survivors can seek help by providing the support they need to restart their lives.
Through providing specialist accommodation and access to employment, this fund will make sure local authorities and charities can provide a strong safety net for anyone facing the threat of abuse in their own home.”
The funding will be released to the Council in the next few weeks and will be used to fund 22 health workers, domestic abuse specialists and scheme workers. For more information about housing services in Hart, please visit www.hart.gov.uk/housing.
Anyone who is experiencing domestic abuse should contact the free, confidential help service on 03300 165 112.