Big Lottery Fund
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Big Lottery Fund boost for Stirling Women’s Aid
The Big Lottery Fund Scotland today (17 JAN) announces its latest package of funding worth over £5.5 million to eleven projects across Scotland.
Stirling and District Women’s Aid receives over £300,000 from the Investing in Communities portfolio.
Moving On - Breaking the cycle of domestic abuse project will support women and their children who have suffered domestic abuse, with the aim of improving their safety, relationships and resilience. The project will help families leaving refuge accommodation, living in their own homes or in homeless accommodation.
Big Lottery Fund Scotland Chair, Maureen McGinn, said: “I am delighted to announce this latest round of grants from our Investing in Communities portfolio. Supporting women and their children who have suffered domestic abuse is an excellent example of the type of project we wish to fund. It is reassuring to know that today’s grant will help fund the programme, allowing Stirling and District Women’s Aid to continue their valuable work and help vulnerable families rebuild their lives.”
Stirling and District Women’s Aid provides refuge accommodation and drop-in support to women and children experiencing domestic abuse. Today’s grant of £316,123 will help fund their Moving On – Breaking the cycle of domestic abuse project. This initiative will help more people like Jane, who says: “I’m a stronger person now. They made me see that I didn’t have to put up with my husband’s violence and mental torture.”
Jane (name changed) first called Stirling and District Women’s Aid (SDWA) one Monday morning after her husband of ten years had assaulted her in front of their children. She’d been hit by him before and he was always very apologetic after the incidents. The family lived in a lovely house in a nice area and Jane stayed at home with the children. Her husband didn’t want her to work.
SDWA supported Jane, seeing her regularly while Jane gradually felt more able to speak about her experiences. The abuse had started slowly with her partner being mostly emotionally abusive, constantly putting her down, telling her she was stupid and ugly, but escalating to physical abuse when she was pregnant with their first child. Jane worried about the children, aged five and seven years, and was keen that they received support which was set up through SDWA children’s workers who saw the children through school.
After a few months of supporting Jane and building an understanding that she was not the cause of the abuse, Jane began to get her self-esteem back. At this point she began to make steps to change the situation she was in. Her SDWA support worker arranged a meeting with a lawyer to discuss separation and give Jane an idea of what she was entitled to. The support worker also helped Jane find a flat and apply for housing benefit to cover the rent. Jane and her children moved out of the family home and Jane filed for divorce.
Over the next few weeks Jane’s support worker helped settle her and the children into their new home, outlined steps to ensure their safety, and provided practical and emotional support. Those first few weeks were hard with the ex-partner sometimes turning up at the house shouting and being threatening. SDWA were there throughout and worked with police and the domestic abuse unit to make sure the family were safe.
The separation was completed after a few months and Jane went back to work as an administrator and enjoys the financial independence this gives her. She’s making new friends and volunteers at the school. The children are doing very well and have started going to the after school basketball club. They’ve grown in confidence and are now happy to bring friends home. As the family gets stronger SDWA have reduced their support with the understanding they’re there when needed.
Jessica Lindohf, Manager of Stirling and District Women’s Aid, said: “This funding makes a huge difference to Stirling and District Women’s Aid. It will enable us to extend the support we currently provide families who experience and have experienced domestic abuse. We will be able to deliver an outreach service to families all over the local authority. It will, in particular, make a difference in the rural areas and with families who are unable to access our drop in service which we are currently not able to reach. We are delighted with the funding and will be able to make a real difference to women’s and children’s lives supporting them to move on and rebuild their lives.”
Today’s funding is part of a package of eleven Big Lottery Fund Scotland, Investing in Community grants totalling £5,618,181 million. To see today’s other successful projects visit
Frances Chisholm, Press Team Scotland: 0141 242 1458
Public Enquiries Line: 0300 123 7110
Text phone: 0845 6021 659
Full details of the Big Lottery Fund programmes and grant awards are available on the website: www.biglotteryfund.org.uk
Notes to Editors:-
• The Big Lottery Fund (BIG), the largest distributor of National Lottery good cause funding, is responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised for good causes by the National Lottery.
• BIG is committed to bringing real improvements to communities and the lives of people most in need and has been rolling out grants to health, education, environment and charitable causes across the UK. Since its inception in 2004 BIG has awarded close to £6bn.
• The Fund was formally established by Parliament on 1 December 2006.
• Since the National Lottery began in 1994, 28p from every pound spent by the public has gone to good causes. As a result, over £29 billion has now been raised and more than 383,000 grants awarded across arts, sport, heritage, charities, health, education and the environment.
• The Scotland Committee has been making Big Lottery Fund decisions on Scottish projects since March 2007. As well as taking devolved decisions on Lottery spending, the Committee, led by Chair, Maureen McGinn, has and will continue to play a strategic role in the future direction of BIG in Scotland.
• The Big Lottery Fund is investing in Scotland’s communities through its Investing in Communities portfolio, as well as the small grants schemes Awards for All, Investing in Ideas, Communities and Families and 2014 Communities.