Flag DV, a local charity supporting those experiencing domestic violence and abuse, has remained open for business during the pandemic. As the country first went into its first lockdown in March they had to move their face-to-face legal advice clinics into a virtual format. As with any new adjustments, it came with a big learning curve for the team as well as their volunteer Family Law Solicitors. But thanks to amazing financial support from several funders, they were able to adapt to the change when their clients needed them the most.
As this year progressed, Flag DV saw an unprecedented number of people trying to access support, with figures for November alone being 140% above what they had seen previously for the time of year. As the strain on personal lives places further stresses on an already abusive environment, the need for more support has become even more apparent. To date they have supported 374 individuals, and with those cases there were a total of 529 children involved, that is 903 people, and counting across the Thames Valley who have received support during a very difficult year.
January is usually a busy time for domestic abuse support groups, and with numbers continuing to grow, and with the introduction of Lockdown 3 bringing a new wave of stress and anxiety to many households in the Thames Valley, Flag DV are preparing for a significant rise in referrals.
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic abuse and needs legal advice about your personal situation, visit Flag DV’s website and self-refer, www.flagdv.org.uk.