News from RtR

West Berkshire Domestic Abuse Service are planning to run a Recovery Toolkit Course to start on March 28, 2019 from 10.00 - 12.00 for 12 weeks (with a break for 2 weeks over the Easter Holidays). The Recovery Toolkit has been written to support women who have experienced Domestic Abuse/Violence, and are no longer in an abusive relationship, to assist each of them to look at ways to develop positive lifestyle coping strategies. Referrals to be made using the attached form.

The Cowshed

The Cowshed is a new charity based in Berkshire which provides support to people of all backgrounds in a time of personal crisis, so could be extremely useful for those fleeing domestic abuse.  Their aim is to provide good quality cleaned and ironed clothes free to anyone in need (referred through social services, churches, schools, doctors and other health professionals).  The clothes are donated from the general public as well as retailers and manufacturers; they are then sorted, washed and ironed at the Cowshed's warehouse ready to be delivered or collected by social services, other health professionals or directly by their clients. The idea is that their clients feel they are receiving a gift to assist them in a time of crisis rather than some old clothes that are overworn, marked or damaged.

Many of you may have seen the recent documentary when it aired on BBC2 on February 6.

Reducing the Risk has again proudly assisted Anna Hall, the award winning film maker in her new venture. Behind Closed Doors Through the Eyes of the Child, looks at exactly what you'd think. It talks to several survivors of domestic abuse who just happen to be children or young people. Our IDVA team were instrumental and also feature in the fascinating film so we'd recommend this to anyone interested in the subject. Although the film has now aired on BBC 2 it is still available for viewing on iPlayer so please take a look.

...and our good friends at Oxford Against Cutting have a reminder that you can help end FGM by talking about it. Last week saw the first successful prosecution in the UK for the crime of FGM, after a woman mutilated her three-year-old daughter. We can prevent more girls from being cut by talking openly about this extremely harmful form of child abuse, and they have some specific suggestions.

Rachel Axtell writes: 

I am delighted to share a new therapeutic project supporting people affected by domestic abuse. This project will provide a safe group environment to explore the impact of domestic abuse and how to move forward from the trauma, and break negative patterns for the future. This includes physical, sexual violence and emotional abuse including coercive control and can be recent or historic. CMHT have secured funding from the OPCC to deliver across East Berkshire and are forming the initial group at the moment. Please consider suitable clients from your current, recent and previous caseloads for service users who may benefit from this healing work.


Citizen's Advice have a new national service: Finding Legal Advice Options for Women Survivors (FLOWS) is an England-wide legal advice service. It offers free legal advice and support to front-line workers in Local Cit A working with women responding to domestic abuse — and they can also advise women themselves and arrange representation.

Our great friends and DA Champions in West Berks are holding an innovative learning opportunity on economic abuse called Lunch & Learn- Economic Abuse. Use your lunchbreak to develop your awareness and understanding of economic abuse within intimate partner relationships.

You do have to bring your own lunch but can learn about the issues, whilst you eat:

This is one for all our active DA Champions in Oxfordshire.

Oxfordshire Domestic Abuse Update 

Guidance regarding advising victims on how to gather evidence, keep safe online, and deal with unwanted or intimidating electronic communications.
January 2019

The Violence, Abuse & Mental Health Network will research the impact of violence and abuse on mental health. The network will focus on all types of domestic and sexual violence and abuse, and all aspects of mental health and wellbeing (i.e., not just diagnosed mental health conditions).