How Can We Help You?
The Government defines domestic violence as "Any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse (psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional) between adults who are or have been intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender or sexuality".
This includes issues of concern to black and minority ethnic (BME) communities such as so called 'honour based violence', female genital mutilation (FGM) and forced marriage.
In Women’s Aid’s view “domestic violence is physical, sexual, psychological or financial violence that takes place within an intimate or family-type relationship and that forms a pattern of coercive and controlling behaviour”.
The Women’s Centre delivers the Freedom Programme in the Stockport area. It’s an 11-week programme that is open to any women who has experienced domestic abuse with her partner (whether that’s a man or a woman), a parent (including forced marriage) or son or daughter. The Freedom Programme will:
Help you to have a better understanding about healthy relationships
Help you to feel better about yourself and build confidence to improve the quality of your life
Help you to understand the beliefs held by abusive people
Help you to recognise which of these beliefs are shared by society – and which of these beliefs you might share
Explore the effects of domestic abuse on children
Introduce you to local resources
Here’s what some of the women who have already attended have said:
‘I wish I’d had this information 30 years ago’
‘I have learned so much about the dynamics of abusive relationships ...’
‘The best part for me... I have been able, for the first time EVER, to talk freely about what happened without being judged or blamed ...’
Reclaim is a programme that aims to help women to understand relationships of power and control, and develop ways of thinking and behaving in order to keep themselves and their children safe from harm.
Our experience tells us that women often blame themselves for their partners’ beliefs and behaviours towards them, making it very difficult to understand what is happening to them and reach the first step of reclaiming their lives and identity through awareness. Self-blame is a common effect of emotional and physical abuse and we believe that if a woman learns of the tactics of abuse and can realise that she has been controlled rather than being in control of her partner's behaviours, then this can reduce her anxieties about the way she views herself and start the process of building self-esteem and change.
The Reclaim programme has been designed as a training resource to help enable women who are or have been experiencing domestic violence and abuse to gain a greater understanding of the nature of an abusive relationship, empowering them to recognise the possible signs of power and control and the effects this has on them and their children.
The programme aims to promote self-knowledge and personal growth assisting participants to develop the ability to make informed choices with confidence in their own judgements and decision making processes, taking control of their lives to make positive changes and helping to reduce the self-doubt that experiencing abusive relationships can create.
The programme will also focus on equipping participants with the tools needed to keep themselves and their families safe from harm as far as possible, through awareness raising and safety planning.