Our Support Explained

Our approach

The services Vale Domestic Abuse Services provides are led by the needs of the people we work to support. They are strengths based, trauma informed and always provided confidentially, placing the survivors’ voice at the heart of all that we do.

Our work is based on building meaningful, supportive, enduring and respectful relationships with all our clients, partners, stakeholders and funders. We cannot do this without a strong commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion.

Vale Domestic Abuse Services’ approach is to try to make sure that Equality, Diversity and Inclusion is central to everything we do, and informs both our services and our organisational culture.

Our goal is to develop and deliver consistently inclusive programmes, projects and services that support and bring together survivors of domestic abuse and their children, and facilitate recovery.  We believe this enables best practice.

We offer a range of services to help survivors and their families to find safety and rebuild their lives. All our services are delivered by qualified and experienced colleagues who understand the nuances of domestic abuse, sexual violence, and gendered abuse.

We know that life can be different. Our focus is to support you to think about your options, recognise your strengths and move forward in the direction you want to go. We will always treat you with respect, care and curiosity. We value your voice and want to listen and hear you. We provide the space and time for you to make your own decisions.

If you are worried about your relationship and want to talk it through, we are here for you

You are not alone!

phoning the helpline

The Helpline

(but do remember you can drop in and see us as well!)

Our helpline is open 9am – 5pm Monday to Friday. We know that the first call is the most difficult and we want to reassure you that this is a safe space for you to talk. You can give as much or as little information as you feel comfortable with.

We promise to listen, answer any questions, go through your options with you in a confidential and non-judgmental way, and give you the space to make your own choices. We will not disclose anything you tell us to a third person unless you give us consent to, or if we believe you or another person may be at risk of harm.

If English isn’t your preferred language, we can arrange to speak with you through a translation service and if you have impaired hearing and require a sign language service, we will arrange for someone to see you along with someone qualified in British Sign Language.

Our helpline is open between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday and our number is 01446 744755.  Out of our hours you can contact the Live Fear Free Helpline on 0800 80 10 800

If you want to explore your options further we may book you an appointment with one of our specialist DART workers.

The DART Team

If you have contacted us for support, if someone else has referred you to us, or if the police have told us about an incident, one of our practitioners will talk with you about what you have been experiencing and what support you would like.

The DART team is made up of a number of specialist domestic abuse practitioners, all of whom are trained and qualified in Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence. Our workers also have specialist knowledge in other areas like housing, mental health or substance use.

They can help you with:

Safety planning
Safe accommodation
Support with the police process
Support around Family Court
Help to make your own home safer
Help with finances and money issues
Help with finances and money issues
Support to access legal advice and the courts
Support and advocacy with other agencies, such as social services, health housing and the police
Support to access welfare benefits, training and employment
Link you with other services that may support you

We also provide specialist support with the court system. We will:

Keep you informed about your case
Accompany you to appointments and court
Request special measures
Arrange pre-trial visits
Support you to complete your victim impact statements
Keep you informed at every step of the way
For Your Children

We know that you will be worried about your children and their wellbeing will be one of your greatest concerns.

We offer:

One to one support – for children and young people to talk about their feelings and support in building strategies and understanding their feelings and behaviours.
Group work – where children and young people can meet others in similar situations and learn about safety, feelings, anger, trauma and wellbeing, and what healthy, safe and equal relationships look like.
Engagement activities – where children and young people can have some fun, access opportunities and build relationships.
For Parents

We know that the abuse you have been subjected to will have had a big impact on you as a parent. We can help you to rebuild protective relationships with your children and help you to turn your hopes, dreams and plans for you and your children into a reality.

For Young People

Our Young People’s service is a free service offered by Vale Domestic Abuse Service for young women and men (18 and under), living in the Vale of Glamorgan, who think something isn’t right in their relationship or have lived in a household which has been abusive.

We aim to:

Support you to make sense of your experiences and understand your feelings    
Explore the concept of safety and what that means to you
Raise awareness of what a healthy, safe and equal relationships looks like so you can identify warning signs
Talk about the difficult dilemma’s and decisions that face you in society, your intimate relationships and friendships
Enable you to identify, reflect and acknowledge your feelings, experiences and behaviours in a positive way
Explore your rights and responsibilities so you can make informed decisions about relationships
Helping with independent living, housing, finances and other wellbeing and life skills

Our Refuge Accommodation

We can provide temporary refuge emergency accommodation for people escaping domestic abuse and sexual violence. Our refuge accommodation is a temporary, safe and confidential space where you can consider your options and plan to rebuild your life. 

We have a communal refuge, accessible 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and a range of self-contained spaces for those individuals and families where communal living is not suitable. Our first step is to discuss whether our refuge accommodation would be suitable for you. We understand it is difficult to talk about some things, but please be honest with us, we want to ensure you get the support you need. It may be necessary to refer you to another refuge if ours is not available or is not suitable for your needs.   

When you agree to accept support from Vale Domestic Abuse Services, we will provide you with a support worker called a SDAP (Specialist Domestic Abuse Practitioner). Your SDAP will be your main point of contact throughout your journey with us. They will help you settle in and provide emotional support, as well as providing practical items, such as clothing and toiletries, that you may not have with you.   We will help you to create a plan of action and support you to make the life you want to be living into a reality.

mother and baby on the sofa

Women’s Wellbeing centre

Whilst we know that it must be a relief when you can shut your own front door and feel safe, a lot of survivors tell us this is when the hard work begins. There is a lot to make sense of and it can feel scary, overwhelming and lonely.

To support with this, the Vale Women’s Wellbeing Centre offers:

> Therapeutic Group work

We deliver a range of programmes including ‘Own My Life’ and ‘Journey Beyond Abuse’, where you can learn from and with other women as you help each other to reflect and build self-esteem and confidence.

> Wellbeing workshops

We provide group sessions where you connect with other women and learn and practice to keep yourself well.

> Counselling

We can provide up to 12 sessions of counselling, both online and in person, at a time that is suitable for you.

> Survivor network 

We know domestic abuse can strip you of your voice. Your voice is valuable and this is the place to use it, to tell your story and have the opportunity to influence services, policies and decisions.

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