Wirral Family Safety Unit is a team of Independent Domestic Abuse Advisors (IDVAs).
IDVAs are independent of police or children’s services and support adult victims of domestic abuse, often in highly complex cases. Last year Wirral’s FSU received more than 800 referrals to support victims of domestic abuse.
As part of our current ‘Nearest and Dearest’ campaign, highlighting the often-untapped support available through close family bonds, friendships or even acquaintances, we spoke to one of Wirral’s specialised IDVAs who told us 10 key things an IDVA can do for survivors in Wirral…
• An IDVA can support you and help you to understand what your options are. They will assess your risk and provide you with a support plan.
• If you are in an abusive or dangerous relationship and want to end the relationship.
• Or, you may not feel in the right place to end the relationship and are concerned for your safety, the IDVA can help and advise you. The IDVA will not judge you.
• You may wish to leave or end the relationship but are concerned about how you will manage financially, the IDVA can give you information.
• You may have concerns around housing – an IDVA can help you access support and advise you.
• You may wish to go to court for civil action to apply for an order or injunction to support you to be safe, the IDVA will be able to assist you
• You may have concerns about the impact your relationship is having on your children and feel they may need support. An IDVA can assist you to find the right support.
• You may be experiencing abuse from a family member (eg teenager or adult child). An IDVA can help and advise you.
• You may be experiencing complex issues that can be better supported by another specialist. If the IDVA is unable to advise or support you, they will identify someone who can.
• IDVAs are the voice of their clients at MARAC (Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conference) meetings and can advocate on your behalf.
Perhaps most importantly, when you are being supported by an IDVA, you WILL be listened to. You WILL be believed.
(Due to the nature of working to support men and women at high risk of abuse from perpetrators, the IDVA has chosen to stay anonymous).
Looking for support?
- If you are concerned for yourself or a loved one, the Family Safety Unit can be contacted on 666 4914 or you can visit www.itsneverokwirral.org for information about local support.
- In an emergency, if you’re concerned for your own or someone else’s immediate wellbeing, always dial 999. In non-emergency cases and for general advice, please call 101.