The Coronavirus Appeal: Hestia

4 May 2020

Cases of domestic abuse are soaring across the UK as the country-wide lockdown continues. For many women and children this means living under the constant threat of violence or targeted abuse. It is exhausting as well as humiliating. Under lockdown, stress can build to highly-pressurised and dangerous situations. Leaving takes time and a huge amount of support to overcome the fear and the worthlessness impressed upon victims.

Hestia provides that support to those going through the process of leaving and beginning to heal and rebuild their lives.This vital work is underpinned by empowering women to regain confidence and create social circles within their local community. From support groups, building social circles through to finding new homes and jobs, Hestia's work has long been built on personal connections to establish trust.

Due to COVID-19 Hestia are facing the unprecedented situation where demand for their services skyrockets as their services and support-building must alter under a lockdown.

Hestia's refuges remain open and the charity is working hard with local authorities to ensure that those women looking to leave their refuges for the next step in their lives after abuse can continue to move, in turn allowing more women fleeing modern slavery and domestic abuse to access their services. Nevertheless, with support groups, connections and networks cut off effectively overnight those living on or below the poverty line are struggling to cope without access to things many of us take for granted: phones and technology to connect us to family, friends, school.

Hestia's staff members face wholly new challenges, they offer advice and referrals for women in danger in five minute bursts as victims try to hide from their perpetrators in their homes and where families live within one room at their refuges many with few possessions for entertainment.

The charity is working tirelessly to provide options for victims at this time. From sourcing pre-paid cards that enable victims to buy essentials to working with Boots pharmacies in a new initiative that will allow those victims seeking help to use consulting rooms to make calls to their helpline privately.

Hestia is a lifeline that we cannot allow to fail.

  • £10 provides a weekly food voucher. £10,000 will help provide £10 weekly food vouchers to 250 survivors over the next month
  • £30 could keep a family safe for a night

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