The Domestic Violence Crisis Service (DVCS) is a local, inclusive service supporting children, young people and adults who have been impacted by family and intimate partner violence within their relationships since 1988.
DVCS provides a range of services to clients, including access to a 24/7 crisis intervention line, legal advocacy and support, support to young people and their families, support groups for women and children, security upgrades, access to emergency accommodation, safety planning and support to men who want to stop their use of violence.
But we can’t do it alone. This financial year DVCS is on target to reach over 75,000 individual contacts. That is an average of over 200 per day and a 31 per cent increase from the previous financial year: DVCS supported over 4,500 people last financial year. The vast majority of people DVCS supports identify as female and are aged between 25 and 44 years of age. This has been the trend for a number of years.
DVCS is a non-government community organisation governed by a Board of nine local people with a varied skill set. DVCS is run by a Chief Executive Officer, Mirjana Wilson who started working with DVCS over 15 years ago, responding to calls for support on their crisis intervention line. Ms Wilson is supported by a Director of Client Services and a Leadership Team of six and a further 35 employees with many working on a 24-hour rotating roster. All client facing staff have relevant specialist skills and work together as a team to provide high-quality and relevant support to our clients.
Now is a perfect opportunity to support a local organisation supporting our local community by making a donation of just $25. All donations of $2 and over are tax deductible and if you make them before 30 June, you can claim them almost straight away!
DVCS can do a lot with $25. It’s enough to pay for breakfast for an individual we place in emergency accommodation for a week. It pays for credit on someone’s mobile phone. It pays for part of a taxi fare when we need to get someone to court. It pays for accommodation for a pet escaping violence. If seven people donate $25, we can pay for one night of emergency accommodation.
“Each year we receive a grant of $40,000 from the ACT Government to pay for emergency accommodation. At the time of writing this, we have already spent over $116,000 on emergency accommodation this financial year. We will never refuse anyone accommodation based on running out of money. We’ll get the money from somewhere, and we hope that somewhere is the wonderful people reading this.
“We really hope the Canberra community can help us help those experiencing violence within their relationships. Having access to emergency accommodation can be the real difference between life and death for some,” said Ms Wilson.
Teyarna, a Voices for Change Advocate has used the emergency accommodation provided by DVCS and this is what she had to say:
“I laid my children down to sleep in emergency accommodation feeling confident that we would live to see another day. Because of [donors and sponsors], I felt supported and that my life mattered. I was met with kind and caring people [at DVCS] who assured me I could call them whenever I needed, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.”
To make a donation, simply visit the DVCS webpage.