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Domestic abuse

Shared Lives for survivors of domestic abuse during Covid-19

One in four women and one in six men will be victims of domestic abuse in their lifetime. The Covid-19 crisis has made things even harder for people experiencing abuse, which is why Shared Lives Plus  received emergency funding from the Ministry for Housing Communities and Local Government to accommodate and support people affected by domestic abuse. We teamed up with national charity SafeLives and specialist support charity Stay Safe East to ensure that survivors staying in Shared Lives access the best support, at the right time, in a way which works for them.

You can read about the outcomes of this work in our latest report below

If you are experiencing domestic abuse and you would like help, you can Freephone 24-Hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline: 0808 2000 247
or visit (access live chat Mon-Fri 3-10pm)

To find out how Shared Lives can support survivors of domestic abuse, watch our animation.

About Shared Lives for survivors

In 2017 Shared Lives Plus were funded by the Tampon Tax Fund to work together with domestic abuse charity, SafeLives, to develop and pilot the Shared Lives model for survivors of domestic abuse. Over three years, we have worked with local Shared Lives schemes in Shropshire and Buckinghamshire to support survivors, many of whom had health and social care needs and required additional support in daily living.

 What survivors say about Shared Lives

“I wish I knew about them before and I may have been able to keep my kids. I like my host and her family. I like the support I have had. I like that people listen to me and scheme worker and host are always there for me and organised courses for me to help me.”

“It was very overwhelming as I wasn’t used to normal kindness.”

“This has changed my life. I have told everyone I know how amazing this is and how it saved me.”

“It’s so lovely that the host cares for me.

“I was unsure whether it would be the right thing for me, but I knew I needed support and was willing to give it a go. Moving in with my host was different to what I imagined. I didn’t want to be treated like a child, but I wasn’t.

I was able to be independent and make my own decisions, but I’ve had someone there to help me and I’ve had a safe place to call home. My advice to others would be to give it a go. It’s helped me and I’m in a much better place now”.

“When it comes to housing, survivors have limited options – we believe everyone experiencing domestic abuse deserves better than this. We hope Shared Lives schemes will provide a further safe and secure environment for survivors to recover from the abuse, regain confidence and rebuild their lives.”

- Suzanne Jacob OBE, Chief Executive of SafeLives

“Over decades, we have seen how building healthy relationships and getting practical support from a carefully chosen and trained Shared Lives carer has enabled women fleeing domestic abuse to rebuild their lives at their own pace, with the support of a household who are with them for the long haul.

We are very excited to be working with SafeLives to develop this model more widely, including for women with learning disabilities, mental ill health and other support needs who have experienced domestic abuse.”

Jayne Wilson, interim CEO, Shared Lives Plus