National Covid-19 funding invested in Cleveland’s domestic abuse and sexual violence services will reach £572,675 following another successful bid by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner.
The Ministry of Justice have announced a further funding boost of £169,675.81 to support organisations in Cleveland who have felt the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, either through additional costs or increased demand.
In July, the Government doubled Cleveland’s requested funding from £192,000 to £403,000, in recognition of the area’s significant demand for domestic and sexual violence support agencies.
The original batch of funding was allocated to support services to 31 October – with this most recent investment set to sustain them until 31 March 2021.
Acting Police and Crime Commissioner Lisa Oldroyd said: “The services we commission have absolutely stepped up to the challenge presented by Covid-19, ensuring vulnerable victims affected by domestic or sexual violence can continue to access the support they need.
“Not only have the services had to invest in technology for staff to work from home, but many have digitised their expert support, launching live chat functions and conducting support sessions with victims via telephone or video call.
“I’m pleased the Government are continuing to invest in these services, so they can sustain their efforts to support vulnerable people into 2021 – despite the ongoing challenges posed by the pandemic.”
Arch North East, Eva Women’s Aid, Foundation, The Halo Project, Harbour, My Sister’s Place, NACRO and Safer Communities all received funding in July to reimburse their costs from the national lockdown and support their work moving forward.
Examples of how the funding was used:
- Purchasing digital equipment and technical support to allow staff to support vulnerable people remotely;
- Welfare supplies for vulnerable victims including groceries, household goods and mobile phones to ease isolation;
- Additional provision or staff to deal with an increase in demand or to replace work normally carried out by volunteers;
- Additional support for young people affected by domestic abuse, including support workers and specialist counselling;
- Remote evidence video link to support victims in giving evidence without attending court;
- Protecting the wellbeing of staff who have continued to work throughout the pandemic through increased supervision;
- Cleaning supplies and PPE equipment.