Kent: Victim Support Groups Get Funding

8 June 2016, 12:32 | Updated: 8 June 2016, 12:36

Almost half a million pounds has been awarded to 13 organisations who provide specialist support to victims of crime in Kent.

The money has been set aside by Kent's Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Scott. It will go to groups specifically offering support to children and young people, victims of hate crime and male victims of crime, as well as therapeutic services and trauma counselling.

Mr Scott said: "It's vital that victims of crime get the help they need to cope with what's happened to them. People can be affected by crime in many different ways, and that's why I want to commission services like these that treat people as individuals and offer specialist support to meet their needs.

"I'm really pleased to invest this money in these organisations and I look forward to working with them and seeing for myself the difference I know this funding will make."

Tunbridge Wells based charity DAVSS (Domestic Abuse Volunteer Support Services), is one of the organisations receiving a share of the money. It has been awarded £10,546 for a nine-month project offering enhanced support to male victims of domestic abuse, including gay, transgender and disabled men.

Male victims of domestic abuse are a particularly hard-to-reach group, with it being estimated that men are twice as likely as women to not tell anyone about being abused.

Sue Dunn, Chief Executive of DAVSS said: "Domestic abuse remains a taboo subject in our society, even more so for victims who are male. Following our Men Standing Up Against Domestic Abuse conference, the number of men contacting DAVSS continues to increase. A year ago we were supporting seven male victims; today it is more than 60 per year. 

"DAVSS is proud to support male and female victims of domestic abuse. This grant from the Police and Crime Commissioner will go directly to supporting male victims and training volunteers and their managers to better understand the impact of domestic abuse when the victim is male."

The groups getting funding are;

CAB Medway - £40,000 - Medway
Choices DA Service - £45,145 - West Kent and Medway
Dandelion Time - £41,400 - Maidstone
DAVSS - £10,546 - West Kent
Family Matters - £41,000 - County wide
Juvenile Justice International - £39,900 - County wide
MCCH - £48,170 - County wide
Medway Mediation - £19,850 - Medway
NRCS (New Romney Counselling Services) - £15,880 - East Kent
Rising Sun - £34,895 - Canterbury and Ashford
Rubicon Cares - £50,000 - County wide
SATEDA - £23,297 - Swale
Sign Health/DeafHope - £40,588 - County wide