Office based support:
How can I get support?
We know that it can feel scary to contact a service like this for the first time and we want to make it as easy as possible for you.
You don’t need to be referred by anyone although we do accept referrals from other agencies e.g. police, social work, GP etc. if you would prefer someone to contact us on your behalf. You might want to contact us without giving your name when you are first looking for information or support and that is absolutely fine.
If you later decide that you want to access on-going support or refuge, we will ask for your name and contact details as part of safety planning.
You can phone us on our support line (tel: 0141 776 0864), send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or make an appointment to see the office-based Women’s Support Worker. In an emergency, you can drop-in to our office which is open weekdays from 9am until 4.30pm.
You can contact us just once to get some information or come back as often as you need to, to get emotional support and practical information.
What will happen when I contact you?
You will be able to speak to a female member of staff who will listen to you, believe you, not judge you and support you to make the decisions that are right for you at this time. She will talk to you about the kind of support you are looking for, how we can best meet your needs and tell you about any other agencies that may be able to help. When you first speak to someone, that worker will try and help you work out which area of our service is right for you. That could mean looking at refuge accommodation or supporting you to look at other housing options, referral to another specialist service or offering regular one to one support.
What kind of support can I get?
We can offer support in a variety of areas including:
- One to one emotional support
- Helping you make a safety plan to keep you and any children you have, as safe as possible,
- Supporting you to access accommodation, either in refuge or elsewhere
- Providing you with information about housing and benefits
- Supporting you to access legal advice
- Supporting you to attend appointments and advocate for you to get the services that you need.
- If you choose to report your experience of domestic abuse to the police we can support you to do this but we would never pressure you into doing this if you don’t feel that this would be right for you.
I’m worried about the impact of domestic abuse on my children. Can they get support?
We can support children between the ages of 5 and 19, even if you decide that now isn’t the right time for you to get any support. For more information on this, see the children and young people page.
I’m in a same sex relationship. Can I get support from you?
If you are woman who has or is experiencing domestic abuse from a female partner, you are welcome to use our service. We are committed to treating lesbian and bisexual women in the same way as all other service users.
I’m a transgender woman. Can I get support from you?
Yes, our service is inclusive of all women and this includes transgender women. We are committed to ensuring that East Dunbartonshire Women’ Aid is a safe space for you.
Will you tell anyone else about what I say?
We offer a confidential support service, which means that the only reason we would pass on any information without your permission is if you say something that indicates that a child or a vulnerable adult may be at risk of harm.
East Dunbartonshire Women’s Aid provides an outreach support service across the Local Authority Area. This service is accessible to women who are either resident in the East Dunbartonshire Area of the council or seeking to settle here.
This service is inclusive of women with experience of domestic abuse in same sex relationships, and transgender women.
If you are unsure whether or not you would be eligible for this service, or perhaps not sure if what you are experiencing, or have experienced, is domestic abuse, please do call and talk to one of our workers, who will help you find the right support.
What kind of support is offered?
The outreach service can offer support tailored towards women’s emotional and practical needs, including safety planning and advocacy. This could include supporting women towards safe, permanent accommodation, or to keep safe in their own homes.
We can offer support in a variety of areas including
- One to one emotional support
- Helping you make a safety plan
- Supporting you to access safe accommodation, either in our refuge or elsewhere
- Information on housing, benefits and legal issues and helping you to fill out any relevant forms
- Support you to go to any appointments you need to, and advocating on your behalf
How is the Outreach Service accessed?
The Women’s Outreach Service can be accessed directly by women by telephoning our office line on (0141 776 0864) and making an enquiry or by way of referral from another agency or even family and friends.
East Dunbartonshire Women’s Aid will take some details and then arrangements can be made for an initial meeting at a convenient and safe time and place.
Follow On Support
Women and children generally stay in refuge until they access their own accommodation. Follow On Support is offered to women when they are re-housed, after having lived in East Dunbartonshire Women’s Aid refuge accommodation. Women are allocated a support worker who will support each woman as she moves out of refuge.
Follow On workers are available for support and information and will help in any way that they can. Women can expect emotional, as well as practical support and women will be listened to with respect and given space to talk about their feelings in their own time.
Workers can accompany women to appointments to other agencies as required (benefits agency, lawyers etc).
Follow On support may involve supporting women in settling into their new community by finding out about services available to them in this area. A Follow On Worker may also support women to find courses available to them, from academic courses to courses on self-esteem and confidence building.
Groupwork is also available in the form of peer support and trauma and wellbeing recovery programmes.
The overall aim of the Follow On service is to make the transition from refuge to a woman’s new home as smooth as possible.
Our independent domestic abuse advocates (IDAAS) will work with you if you have been identified as facing a high risk of harm from your partner or ex-partner. They will work alongside you and other agencies like housing, the police and social work to try and increase your safety.
IDAAs work with women on a short-term basis to reduce their risk, and once the risk is reduced they will receive support from another part of the service.
As part of the support you receive from an IDAA you may be referred to East Dunbartonshire Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conference (MARAC). This is a meeting that is held once a month to discuss the victims of domestic abuse in East Dunbartonshire who are identified as being most in danger. It is attended by many different agencies including Women’s Aid, the Police, Housing and Social Work. At the meetings we share information that is relevant to your safety and create a safety plan which all the different agencies take part in. The IDAA will make sure that your views are represented at the meeting, and make sure that you know what will happen following it.