This is a community based project that provides support to BME victims who are threatened by or at risk of domestic abuse, forced marriages, honour based violence and FGM. The project is funded by the PCC’s and VAWDASV Regional Teams and is available in the South Wales, Cwm Taf, Gwent and Dyfed Powys areas.
The project addresses safety for the individual and their family, deals with housing issues, access to benefits, immigration issues, the right to reside and support with the habitual residence test. It supports service users in addressing their debt issues, arrears, access to legal support and personal development training. Language support is provided to those who are unable to communicate in English.
The project empowers and enables victims to be able to make future choices. It also support those victims of domestic abuse or violence against women who do not want to move to a refuge for various reasons and wish to remain in other own homes, by ensuring appropriate safety plans are in place. The support includes effective risk assessments and management plans, target hardening and collaboration with Court IDVA’s to issue criminal and civil justice proceedings if required.
The lack of understanding of BME issues by public services often prevents service users accessing appropriate support in time. Bawso support workers carry out preventative work by raising awareness with other professionals and service providers about domestic abuse from BME perspectives. They also help BME victims access relevant support services in their locality, as well as providing information about living in Britain and their own cultural practices, especially around child protection, forced marriage and FGM acts and orders.