Support and advice:
Reducing the Risk works in partnership with Oxfordshire County Council and City Council to bring you information relevant to the Oxfordshire area.
Oxfordshire County Council has shared guidance on how to respond to concerns around domestic abuse at this time, whether that is as an individual experiencing domestic abuse, a family member or friend, a neighbour, or someone concerned about hurting another person. They have produced advice on safety planning for professionals and victims of domestic abuse.
There are two downloadable posters available you may want to print off and display within your services or on social media:
OCC produces partner updates which include useful guidance, information on how you can help support those experiencing DA, and up to date news about local services.
- Oxfordshire Domestic Abuse Partner Update – April 2020
- Oxfordshire Domestic Abuse Partner Update – March 2020
If you’d like to sign up to the mailing list for partner updates please contact: Abi.Wycherley@Oxfordshire.gov.uk
Read more below about the services available in Oxfordshire. For National helplines, services and specialist support, click here.
Guidance for domestic abuse and older people
OCC have recently released information on domestic abuse and older people, including ways of checking in and supporting them. There is also a poster which can be used to share information about services available to support older people experiencing domestic abuse.
A2 Domestic Abuse Services
The Oxfordshire Domestic Abuse Helpline provides emotional support and practical information for adults affected by domestic abuse. They work with victims to empower them to make decisions regarding their relationship, irrespective of whether they wish to leave or not. The helpline can help with any enquiries that you may have and provide access to support services. This is a free number and will not show on a landline phone bill, but may appear on an itemised mobile phone bill. A referral form for professionals is available on their website.
Helpline: 0800 731 0055 (M – F 10:00 – 19:00)
Provide counselling to victims and survivors who are in, or have left, an abusive relationship.
Phone: 01865 242960
Oxford Sexual Abuse and Rape Crisis Centre
Confidential listening service offering support and information over text, email and phone, for women and girls who have experienced sexual abuse and violence. They also provide the Independent Sexual Violence Advocacy service for Oxfordshire.
Phone: 0800 783 6294
FLAG DV, Free Legal Advice Group for Domestic Violence, is a charity providing free legal advice from family law solicitors. They focus on empowerment, protection and choice and operate across Thames Valley in Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire. To access their service, please complete their referral form. They also operate a phone line ensuring all victims can access the service. Support is available to any domestic abuse victim in the Thames Valley, no matter their gender, sexual orientation or gender identity.
Phone: 01635 015854 Mon/Wed/Fri 10am – 1pm
Oxford Parent Infant Project (OXPIP)
Oxpip works with parents to help them better understand their relationship with their baby and supports parents who are uncertain about their parenting.
Phone: 01865 778034
Oxford Family Information Service
Providing information and support for children, young people and families in Oxfordshire.
Phone: 01865 323332
This info-packed site contains everything for young people in Oxfordshire! Their LGBTQ page has been developed to provide LGBTQ+ communities with better access to information, services and advice from local, regional and national organisations.
Oxfordshire Safeguarding Children’s Board
- Training brochure
- Threshold of need – 2019
- Procedures manual – 2019
- Domestic abuse pathway for young people
Oxfordshire Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH)
Phone: 0345 050 7666
If you have an urgent concern for a child, call 999 or 1010.
LCSS (The Locality and Community Support Service)
The Locality and Community Support Service (LCSS) is part of our Children’s Services Integration Programme. You can find your local LCSS Community Coordinator on the OSCB website.
The LCSS provides advice and guidance to universal professional partner agencies including schools, health and voluntary and community groups, across Oxfordshire when emerging concerns are raised for children that do not require an immediate safeguarding response. The LCSS is the first point of contact where non-immediate safeguarding concerns are identified.
Safe! supports children and young people to feel safe, thrive and achieve their potential. They provide a young victim service and Building Respectful Families for families affected by Child to Parent Violence across Thames Valley.
The Building Respectful Families programme has been developed using the Break4Change model which has a proven record in Brighton and Hove.
For more information contact Ruth Donaldson on 01865 203 829 / 07419 374271
Abuse of vulnerable adults
In Oxfordshire, the criteria for being defined as a “vulnerable adult” are someone who is:
- Aged 18 or over,
- Receiving or in need of care. e.g. help with washing or dressing,
- Unable to take care of themselves, or unable to protect themselves against significant harm or exploitation.
Further information on policies and procedures in Oxfordshire is available in the following resources:
- Oxfordshire Safeguarding Adults Board Website
- OSAB’s Multi-Agency Procedure – 2018
- OSAB’s Threshold of Needs Matrix – 2018
- Oxfordshire Social and Community Services
Phone: 0845 050 7666 / 01865 328232
Out of hours emergency number: 0800 833 408
Independent Domestic violence Adviser (IDVA) Service
Reducing the Risk IDVA Service works with everyone assessed at high risk of significant harm or trauma through abuse. For more information about the service, visit our dedicated page.
Housing departments have a duty to house anyone fleeing domestic abuse.
Oxford City: 01865 252858
Cherwell: 01295 252535
South Oxfordshire: 01235 540359
Vale of the White Horse: 01235 540359
West Oxfordshire: 01993 861010
Social & Community Services: 0845 050 7666
Out of hours: 0800 833408
Oxford Witness Service
If an individual is going to court as a witness or victim of crime, the Witness Service can provide free and confidential support to help them cope. Family and friends who are attending court can get help too and the Witness Service supports witnesses for both the prosecution and defence. The Witness Service can also provide support to children at court.
The Witness Service can give the individual:
- Someone to talk to confidentially, about how they feel before a trial
- Information about what to expect in court, including a chance to see the court beforehand and learn about court procedures
- A quiet place to wait before the individual is called to give evidence
- Someone to go with the witness into the courtroom if they want, to help them feel more at ease
- Practical help (for example with claiming expenses)
- Easier access to people, such as court staff, who can answer specific questions about the case
- A chance to talk over the case when it has ended and to get more help or information
The Witness Service is free and independent of the police or courts.
Phone: 01865 240957 / 01865 727753
MARAC in Oxfordshire
To make a referral, use MODUS or email the county MARAC administrator for guidance: Alan.Thompson@thamesvalley.pnn.police.uk
Support with injunctions
There are a number of possible options for any victim of domestic abuse regarding family court. If you are on a low income or think you cannot afford to pay for one privately, you can use the Ministry of Justice Legal Aid Calculator to see if you qualify for help.
The Law Society website can help in finding a qualified solicitor whether privately or, if you qualify, a Legal Aid Provider in family law. The search facility is useful in identifying local firms in any area.
DA Champion Training
The Oxfordshire Champions Network is formed of trained, supported and resourced practitioners across a range of agencies who are committed to helping victims of domestic abuse. For more information on DA Champion training, visit the dedicated page.
Oxfordshire Domestic Abuse Recovery Pilots
The Launch Event for Oxfordshire’s suite of Pilots for Recovery from Domestic Abuse took place on Friday 23rd October, 11am-1pm. You can view the slides from the event here.
7 unique pilots have been commissioned from a range of providers to support both adult and children survivors of domestic abuse experiencing trauma as a result of domestic and sexual abuse, including female genital mutilation, so-called honour based abuse, and forced marriage.
The pilots will be responding to current need which may have been exacerbated by the recent Coronavirus safety, social distancing and movement restriction measures. The interventions will support those currently in need of trauma informed support to recover from the medium and longer-term effects of domestic abuse. The focus is on supporting survivors to gain further emotional and psychological stability and improved self-actualisation on their journey of recovery.
We expect referrals from a range of agencies but welcome in particular referrals following on after initial support which may have been provided by professionals such including specialist domestic and sexual abuse services and short term interventions by statutory, independent and community and voluntary sector organisations, such as Children’s Services, the police and other organisations within the criminal justice system and other more generic support services.
The Pilots will be running for 6 months from October 2020 and there are 4 options available.
Please note: These programmes are not being run by Reducing the Risk, so please direct any questions to the programme coordinators (contact details are on the posters/flyers).
Option 1: Adults (18+)
Own My Life
A programme for single women/women with children below statutory CSC threshold.
iRest for Adults
An evidence-based form of guided meditation that has been shown to resolve symptoms associated with PTSD following domestic abuse.
WoW Space Recovery Project
Supporting women to recover from Cultural Harm based domestic abuse.
Option 2: Children (5-11s)
Mulberry Bush Third Space
Supporting children aged 5-11 in a therapeutic community-based setting enabling safety and expression through play and exploration.
Option 3: Children (11-17s)
SAFE! Recovery Groupwork
Including one group for young people with domestic abuse in the family and one group for young people with domestic abuse in their own intimate relationships. More information to come soon.
iRest for Young People
Similar to iRest and Bloom for adults, but for 11-17-year-olds with parents/adult present, this is an evidence-based form of guided meditation that has been shown to resolve symptoms associated with PTSD following domestic abuse.
Option 4: Whole Family Local Programmes
St Mary’s Church in Chipping Norton
Combining evidence-based programmes with innovative interventions involving art, cooking, and forest school activities.
PACT in Abingdon
Including holistic 1:1 and group interventions for parents and children affected by domestic abuse.
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