Domestic Abuse

Basic DIY workshop-New pilot project-May 2024

We are delighted to be working with one the Stonewater refuge to deliver Basic DIY session for women living in refuge. It is delivered by Leesa Tall and Nasreen Begum, interpreter. This six weeks sessions will be covering recognising and becoming familiar with basic items in the home such as meters, boiler, water stop cock, fuse box etc…. Learn how to change and understand the different types lightbulbs. Looking at washing machine and tumble-dryer pipes. How to put a curtain pole up safely, picture frames and flat packs and much more.

Leesa explained why she doing this:

‘Living in a refuge with my children, including one with a disability, presented challenges. Upon securing a home, I faced obstacles like a bare property with no lightbulbs or curtains. Without a support system, settling my children was difficult. After weeks with just a sheet covering the window, I learned to manage household tasks through online resources and conversations. This experience motivated me to help other women in similar situations feel empowered and confident in handling household tasks.’

June 2023-June 2024

Under our rainbow project, a small amount of funding has been given towards our Domestic Abuse project as well as our new pilot project, DIY lesson for women survivors. The grant is used for QPCO’s client only. The grant was awarded from BLCF under the Frank Branston Fund.

April 2021-March 2023

QPCO was funded by the Office of the Police Crime Commissioner to provide support for victims of Domestic Abuse (DA), victims of sexual offences and victims of violence against women and girls (including victims with no recourse to public fund). We have had 143 referrals for the period of April 2022 to March 2023. In one of the testimony we received from Bedfordshire Police, the following point is made: ‘Having the safe haven that Queens Park Community Organisation fund followed by the transport to a long-term refuge saves the lives of both Women and Children.’ We are very proud of this achievement and hope we can carry on providing this essential service in the future.

Our project delivered:

  • essential and potentially life-saving temporary accommodation while victims of domestic abuse and their children wait for shelter accommodation and obtain their paperwork to be entitled to benefits. 
  • transport towards moving to a new location or attending court or enabling them to live their lives.  
  • interpreting service for victims of DA and local voluntary sector organisations helping victims.
  • organising and funding the securing of property for victims who have been moved into new accommodation but may still be at risk or harassment/threat/violence or feel unsafe due to past experiences.
  • essential items such as blankets, clothes, toiletries, sanitary products and food for victims with no recourse to public funds and their children.

I thought I would email to say a massive thank you for all of your support over this last year. Your support has been invaluable to the police and also the VEO team and we are very lucky to have you especially in our moments where we are desperately trying to secure emergency accommodation or just help with travel costs for a fleeing victim. I do not know what we would have done without your support and guidance. One particular case stands out for me where you supported me with a Zimbabwean victim who was trying to flee her abusive relationship from her husband. She had visa issues and also very reliant upon her husband, but with our joint up approach the victim was in good hands and you happened to know of a Zimbabwean community who you put the victim in touch with, where she was offered help and support, was offered 121 support and was able to stay with another Zimbabwean female, you also managed to get her free legal advice around her visa.

This is just one of many examples where you have exceeded our expectations, so thank you again for all your hard work and support 😊.

Bedfordshire Police

I have used QPCO on several occasions and have been overwhelmed by the speed in which they have been able to arrange accommodation for vulnerable victims of rape / serious sexual offences. One of my victims had a chaotic lifestyle and was living in an unsafe and toxic situation and was then raped and sexually exploited. The second victim was in an abusive marriage and her husband had repeatedly raped / sexually abused her. After exploring various avenues for help with temporary housing (for the second victim I had been chasing Harrow housing for four days), I contacted QPCO very late in the day for both victims, and within ten minutes they had arranged hotel accommodation with breakfast. This allowed us the time to find a more appropriate and long term solution for both victims, getting them to a place of safety and ensuring relevant agencies were able to support both ladies. QPCO most certainly go the extra mile to support vulnerable people, offering both practical and emotional support, including food banks, interpreting, signposting etc. This is probably the most supportive voluntary agency I have worked with in a long time and their passion for vulnerable people is remarkable to see – we need more agencies like this to support the work we do because statutory services are stretched and cannot offer immediate support in many instances. Marie-Ange will make herself available at all hours – including late at night – to ensure a victim has food, clothing, toiletries etc. Every member of the QPCO family is kind, empathic and generous in both their time and energy – all a huge asset to Bedford.

Bedfordshire Police