Volunteers appeal to support victims of domestic abuse
Seven volunteer organisations have collaborated to form the CRiTiCaLL initiative to support victims of domestic abuse throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, Safe Ireland, Dublin City Volunteer Centre, Dún Laoghaire Rathdown Volunteer Centre, Fingal Volunteer Centre, South Dublin County Volunteer Centre and Wicklow Volunteer Centre are appealing to communities to aid and support them in their response.
In preparation for the rolling out of increased supports, the participating Volunteer Centres have announced a list of ways that people can help this community response:
• Donations – purchasing much-needed items and dropping them off in Dublin 8
• Volunteer your home – volunteer a holiday home or second property as a safe haven
• Write letters of courage and hope to those emerging from domestic abuse
Lord Mayor Tom Brabazon showed support for the initiative for providing a pathway to safety for women living with domestic abuse during this time. “Domestic abuse takes many forms, as we know, so the response must be flexible, creative, and sadly immediate when danger is imminent. CRiTiCaLL shows people how they might be able to respond to the needs of men, women and children in different ways and as Lord Mayor, I fully support this coordinated community response, as do my colleagues,” said the Lord Mayor. At the heart of the initiative, Edel Flynn of Element78 who is a Dublin City Volunteer Centre Board Member, said that the Covid-19 pandemic has proven how volunteers are prepared to go above and beyond for those in need. “The supports provided by Dublin City Volunteer Centre that enable such a vital initiative in the city during these critical times is a testament to the staff, volunteers and the goodwill that exists in the city,” said Flynn.
As many refuges are already at full capacity, the initiative hopes to ensure that there are supports in place for those wishing to leave unsafe situations. “We want to ensure that when people are ready to make the courageous step to leave an abusive situation that we have every resource to hand to support them in their recovery and pathway to a new, safe life,” said Kelley Bermingham, Community Officer, Saint Patrick’s Cathedral. Any offers of support for the initiative will be directed to Kelley Bermingham, Community Officer of Saint Patrick’s Cathedral and Lisa Marmion, Services Development Manager of SAFE Ireland. All practical resources will then be allocated to where they are most needed through partnership with various organisations including An Garda Síochána, The Iveagh Trust and Serve the City, maintaining the dignity and respect for those who receive your support during this time.
Should you wish to support this initiative, a full list of what you can do to help is here: https://www.i-vol.ie/organisationdetails/?orgID=0014G00002TybEOQAZ Edel Flynn of Element78 is a board member of the Dublin City Volunteer Centre, which provides services for organisations and individuals in the Dublin City and part of a nationwide network.