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S.O.S Project Mobile Phone Amnesty Update.

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Thank you very much to everyone who has donated mobile phones so far to the S.O.S Mobile Phone Amnesty.  mobile phones

Modern mobile phones are very easy to track - the attached link is written by Ben Goldacre from The Guardian who describes pdfHow_I_stalked_my_girlfriend.pdf147.29 KB.

We are really pleased to be able to offer women a "new" phone either if they believe theirs has been tracked, or if it has been broken or if their partner never allowed them to have a phone of their own.  Having a new phone that hasn't been tracked makes a massive difference in helping to keep women safe who are being stalked by ex-partners and gives them immediate access to the Police.

In particular we would like to thank Maria from Royal Wootton Bassett who has sent a box full of phones and chargers!

We asked Maria what had prompted her to be so generous with her donation and she said HOMETRUTHS’ Mobile Phone Amnesty “Firstly, gives a new life to an old phone that's just cluttering up the place and it’s an excellent way of reusing resources and I'm all for reusing stuff in a valid way.” But she also has supported friends who have survived domestic abuse, and is also aware of the death of the daughter of someone who lives in her community. “People tend to think only of physical violence, and not about mental cruelty, and psychological issues.  These often go unaddressed, leaving women extremely vulnerable and with low self-esteem, no confidence, and a very depressive cycle begins. Women need to be empowered to understand that was is happening to them is not normal, not acceptable, and that there are people who care and will help.”

Thanks Maria, and if anyone else is able to donate their old phones please get in touch.

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Robert Buckland MP met with TEARS Group today.

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Robert Buckland MP for South Swindon met with the TEARS Survivors' Forum today.  Robert B

HOMETRUTHS facilitated the meeting between Robert Buckland and ten survivors of domestic abuse and stalking.  Robert was instrumental in bringing about the new stalking law that was introduced in England and Wales in November last year, and most of the attendees had experienced stalking and harassment from their ex-partners either during or following their relationship. 

Robert Buckland helped launch an independent parliamentary enquiry into stalking law reform.  In his speech to the House of Commons a year ago when consideration was given to the Lords Amendments to the Protection of Freedom s Bill, he described stalking as: "...emotional terrorism; it is a crime of control, a crime of manipulation, and, yes, a crime of violence."

Today Robert talked about the Paladin National Helpline for victims of stalking, the All Parliamentary Group with which he is actively involved and the importance of training police officers, prosecutors, Judges and Magistrates and other professionals.  This was felt strongly by the TEARS group who suggested that they feel "worried to mention it to people other than HOMETRUTHS as no-one else understands."

He was interested to here about the S.O.S - Survivors of Stalking Project HOMETRUTHS is developing and talked about ways we can work together around the issue of stalking within domestic abuse.

Other matters discussed included: changes to Legal Aid, the impact of domestic abuse on the Family Court processes around children, evidencing domestic abuse and stalking within the Criminal Justice System, and the impact of domestic abuse on work and employers.

TEARS enjoyed meeting with Robert Buckland and went away with details of his Friday Surgeries and email address to enable future contact.

After Rober Buckland, Michelle Matthews, Locality Lead Facilitator for North Central Swindon met with the TEARS Group to talk about the role of the Locality Leads in Swindon.  There are 7 in total and their role is to connect the community of Swindon with the local council.  Michelle explained how community groups like TEARS can connect further with the local areas and talked about some of the groups and projects her Locality Team work with currently.

Thank you very much to both Robert Buckland and Michelle Matthews for coming to meet with the TEARS Survivors' Forum.

We will be meeting again in a couple of months - any survivors of domestic abuse living in Swindon who would be interested in attending please contact us on: 01793 617589 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

 

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HOMETRUTHS in the Malmesbury Standard

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HOMETRUTHS have been featured in the Wiltshire & Gloucester Standard, as we support more survivors of domestic abuse in the rural areas outside Swindon.

http://www.wiltsglosstandard.co.uk/news/northwilts/10733845.Help_for_victims_of_domestic_abuse_in_rural_areas/

malmesbury standard 

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Grow Your Tenner Has Started!!

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Localgiving.com launched Grow Your Tenner 2013 on 15th October at 10am. ten pounds

pdfGrow Your Tenner 2013

Every £10 donation made to a local organisation is doubled.

This is a fantastic way of making a donation to HOMETRUTHS to support us in our work with survivors of domestic abuse in Swindon and Wiltshire.

As an independent organisation we are self-funded and ensure that all donations go directly into helping the people we work with.

Please click this link to find out how Grow Your Tenner works, and please consider making a donation to HOMETRUTHS because every penny is vital in making a difference to the lives of survivors and their children living with domestic abuse.

Thank you

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Thank you Gemma!!

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Gemma's Walk has raised over £500!!! We cannot thank Gemma enough for her courage and strength in making it to the end of the 100km/62mile Thames Path Challenge.

Apparently not all participants made it to the end so a huge congratulations to Gemma for finishing and thank you so much for raising money for HOMETRUTHS.

Thank you also to everyone who sponsored Gemma, we really appreciate every donation and all the money raised will go into providing services to keep survivors of domestic abuse and their children safe from harm.

Gemma's Walk

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Listen to Jack FM from Monday for the HOMETRUTHS appeal!

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Listen to Jack FM from Monday 30th September Jack FM Swindon

From Monday 30th September, Jack FM Swindon, will be appealing for old mobile phones in support of HOMETRUTHS' S.O.S - Survivors of Stalking phone amnesty.

Jack FM radio station broadcasts on 107.7 fm across Swindon and surrounding areas. www.jackfmswindon.com

HOMETRUTHS really appreciates the support of Jack FM in raising awareness of the S.O.S project and any old mobile phones that we receive from Jack listeners to give to the women we support who are being stalked.

S.O.S Survivors of Stalking

1 in 5 women will be stalked in her lifetime in the UK.  The most common stalkers are male ex-partners.  HOMETRUTHS S.O.S Stalking project is a pilot project funded by the Wiltshire Police Authority (which has now been superceded by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner) to provide safety planning, risk assessment, support, information and connecting victims of stalking with the help police and other agencies can provide.

Stalking can continue from anything between 6 months and over 2 years and we are working with women who have experienced stalking both in their relationship but also after the relationship has finished.

S.O.S supports women and girls from the age of 16 who have or are experiencing stalking and harassment from partners, ex-partners, one-time dates or persistent males pursuing a relationship that is unwanted.

What is Stalking?

Stalking became a criminal offence in November last year and until then had been dealt with purely as harassment.  Stalking includes: repeat phone calls and texts, contacting through social media such as Facebook and Twitter, following, hanging around the house, work or college of the person they are stalking, driving past them in the street, contacting the friends or family of the victim.

Stalking has a massive impact on the lives of the people being stalked and harassed.  It leads to depression, anxiety, high levels of fear and people have problems eating, sleeping and going out.

If you are being stalked or harassed by a partner or ex-partner or if you would like to find out more about the S.O.S Project  or can donate any old mobile phones then please get in touch.

01793 617589  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Please post phones and chargers to: HOMETRUTHS, Box 63, 116 Commercial Road, Swindon, Wiltshire, SN1 5BD. Thank you very much.

 

 

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Stalking S.O.S Group Meeting

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We had a really good meeting of the S.O.S Survivors of Stalking Group today.  Really good to see everyone.  The women who attend are a really welcoming group and any women living in Swindon or Wiltshire who have or are experiencing stalking and harassment from a partner or ex-partner would be interested in coming to future meetings, please get in touch.

 

Tagged in: S.O.S Project stalking
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Thank you Chris from cf10ten

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Thank you very much to Chris Franklin from cf10tencf10ten for helping us update this website!  We really appreciate you giving your time and expertise so generously.

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Breast Feeding Event in the Parks.

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HOMETRUTHS attended a breast feeding event at the Parks in Swindon today.  We took along information about our services because pregnant women are more likely to experience the start of, or an escalation in domestic violence.

Thank you Carolyn for inviting us, it was a really good turn out and great to see lots of mums, bumps and babies!!

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Counting the Cost of Domestic Violence - 12 women murdered in August 2013

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Karen Ingala Smith has been counting the numbers of women killed by their partner or ex-partner, she found 12 women were killed last month alone.

Two women a week continue to die on the UK at the hands of violent partners and ex-partners, the importance of HOMETRUTHS and domestic abuse services is vital:  http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/sep/15/domestic-violence-men-killing-women

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Theresa May, Home Secretary, announces an inquiry into the Police Handling of Domestic Violence cases

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Home Secretary Theresa May, announced on Friday 6th September that an inquiry by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) will be undertaken to look at the performance of Police forces across England & Wales, to identify where improvements can be made and to report back in April 2014.

This is welcomed by domestic abuse organisations, however concern about the limitations of the inquiry to the police service have been expressed.  A broader inquiry including the Crown Prosecution Service, Social Services and the NHS would be preferrable by an independent inspectorate that would undertake a public enquiry.

Read more in the following report:http://www.theguardian.com/society/2013/sep/06/domestic-violence-police-handling-review

 

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"Stalked by the Man who said he Loved me"

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A fantatsic feature was run in the Swindon Advertiser on Wenesday 4th September about HOMETRUTHS' S.O.S - Survivors of Stalking Pilot Project.  Four members of the S.O.S Survivors's Forum : Christen, Susie, Diana and Tracey met with a reporter and explained why they are involved in supporting HOMETRUTHS to develop this programme within Swindon and Wiltshire.

Each of the women has experienced stalking by a partner or ex-partner and they provide an opportunity for us to consult with them and draw on their personal experiences to provide invaluable contributions to the development of the project.

S.O.S is funded until November 2013 and we will use the outcomes to seek continuation funding of such an important project.

If anyone is interested in finding out more about the project, would like to be involved in helping with the development and funding of the project or if anyone is experiencing or has experienced stalking by a partner or ex-partner please get in touch: 01793 617589 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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BBC News Points West Interviews HOMETRUTHS

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BBC News Points West invited HOMETRUTHS to comment on the appeal by Debbie Buttars - mother of Hannah Fisher, who was murdered by her boyfriend - for schools to teach pupils about domestic violence.  Whilst we fully support the need to teach children about domestic abuse so they can learn about the signs of abuse to keep them safe in their own relationships, we also recognise that without resources and specialist support in place for children and young people there can be risks for young people living in homes where there is domestic violence. 
  
750,000 children are estimated to be living in homes in the UK where domestic violence happens.  Raising awareness increases the number of disclosures by children who recognise the behaviours within their own homes and families, and teachers and school staff need to be equipped and resourced to deal with the potential child protection and safeguarding issues this raises.  Resources need to also be in place to support the whole family and organisations like HOMETRUTHS who provide dedicated safety and support services for survivors of domestic abuse from the age of 16 and their children, need sustainable funding.
  
Watch the interview on BBC iPlayer.
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Freedom Programme Open For Referrals

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The Freedom Programme is open for referrals for the next group starting in September 2013.

It is available to women who are aged 16+ who are or have been in abusive and violent relationships and anyone with a history of domestic abuse that still effects them now.

It runs during school term time, there is a free creche for children under school age and it is weekly for 2 hours.

Anyone interested in coming along or finding out more please get in touch, it is open to the women of Swindon and anyone from the surrounding area who can get into Swindon.

Women can contact us directly and we also open to referrals from agencies and services.

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Did you hear us talking about S.O.S Stalking Project on Jack FM?

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Jack FM Swindon rang us and asked to have a chat about our S.O.S Stalking Project: http://www.jackfmswindon.com/news/swindons-news/stalking-charity-helps-double-the-women-expected/

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Gemma's 100km Sponsored Walk for HOMETRUTHS

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On September 14th, Gemma Clarkson will be walking 100km (62 miles!) over a 24 hour period when she undertakes the Thames Path Challenge to raise funds for HOMETRUTHS.

This is an amazing distance to walk and we really appreciate Gemma choosing HOMETRUTHS as her cause to raise funds.

We would like to raise £1,000 to help fund the services we provide for survivors of domestic abuse and their children living in Swindon and Wiltshire.

Please make a donation and ask family, friends and employers to donate as well.  Donations can be made on-line at: https://localgiving.com/fundraising/gemmawalks100km

Spread the word and support Gemma in her amazing challenge!

Thank you!

 

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Fabulous day at Pinehurst Family Fun Day!

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HOMETRUTHS had a great afternoon at the Pinehurst Family Fun Day on Saturday 13th July 2013.  Temperatures were soaring and the sunshine brought out lots of people from the local community.

Thank you to everyone who put so much effort into the day and for arranging for HOMETRUTHS to have a stall - it was a brilliant opportunity to meet people and raise awareness of domestic abuse!!

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Interesting Training Session on Clare's Law

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HOMETRUTHS attended a really interesting session this morning about the Clare's Law pilot scheme which is being piloted in 4 Police force areas including Wiltshire.

Lots of questions and thoughts around the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (DVDS) which enables intimate partners the right to ask about the criminal history of a current partner, and concerned third parties including family, friends and professionals to apply for the right of a person they have concerns for to know about the history of a partner.

Thank you to Sarah, Pete and Liz from Wiltshire Police who made it such an interesting session.

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More information about Clare's Law: http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2013/apr/21/a-history-of-violence-clares-law

 

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