Helping vulnerable women across the UK
When thinking about domestic abuse, it is common to picture victims trapped in physically, emotionally or financially abusive relationships. But what happens to victims who have made the brave decision to leave their abuser and start a new life for themselves? Many of them might start out in a refuge, which is a safe house designed for victims (usually women) to escape from domestic abuse. According to Women’s Aid, there are now over 500 refuges across the UK.
With the rise in domestic abuse over recent years, we are seeing an increased awareness of the need to tackle domestic abuse and this in turn has led to the creation of various support services. More and more people are now fleeing to refuges looking for a safe place to stay away from fear and abuse.
The downside of this is that the increase in demand is putting a strain on the resources available in refuges. A lot of victims flee their homes in emergency situations and don’t always have the time to pack essential belongings, including body care and sanitary products. When they arrive at a refuge, victims have enough to cope with in terms of their emotional and physical recovery without having to worry about their personal hygiene.
That’s where Elle for Elle comes in. This is a non-profiting charitable organisation created by two friends, Lynette Page-Collin and Rachel O’Hare. The aim of Elle for Elle is to collect body-care, haircare and cosmetics from the public and donate these to women’s refuges across the UK. This is part of their “Dignity after Distress” campaign, which focusses on providing women with the essential items needed to take care of themselves and maintain their personal hygiene after going through their traumatic ordeals.
Elle for Elle is supported by various retailers and groups across the UK and, this February, Maguire Family Law offered a helping hand. Our team worked together to gather beauty and cosmetic products, either from local shops or our own bathroom cupboards, to donate to Elle for Elle. Eimear Maguire (Director) and Katie Anderson (Business Support Manager) then attended Elle for Elle’s networking event at Alderley Edge on 13 February 2019, armed with three shopping bags filled with donations. To date, Elle for Elle have donated over 20,000 products to vulnerable women, and this figure is increasing by the day.
There are a variety of ways to donate and you can do this either via Elle for Elle or directly to your nearest refuge. For more information about about the amazing work Lynette and Rachel do, please visit their website.
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic abuse, it is important that you get the right help and support. There are various charities and support services who you can contact, including:
- Women’s Aid
- National Centre for Domestic Violence
- Men’s advice line
You can also read our latest blog ‘Protecting Yourself from Domestic Abuse’ to find out more about the legal remedies available – https://www.family-law.co.uk/protecting-domestic-abuse/.