Intimate partner violence is a widespread problem in Russia. Women and girls who suffered from it are one of the most stigmatised and vulnerable groups in Russia. Yet there are not many programmes aimed at psychological help for victims of intimate partner violence.

We are happy to award a grant to the Russian Charitable Organisation for Aid to Children and Youth “Ulica Mira” on a project to deliver psychological help to young women and children who have experienced intimate partner violence. This project is specifically designed to help young women and children to overcome psychological consequences of abuse and targets specific issues faced by victims of intimate partner violence that undermine their ability to break out of the abusive relationship.

Beneficiaries of this project seek help in relation to abuse by a current or former partner/ husband, sexual abuse by a partner, stalking and threats, traumatic and other psychological consequences of abusive relationships, emotional consequences of abuse or divorce/separation with an abusive partner.

This project is essential to help the victims to deal with this abuse, to restore their mental health and to reduce the risk of future abuse. Children learn how to deal with trauma and get back to normal life. The project is running from September 2019 and it will continue into early 2020.

The short-term objectives are:
• Help victims to develop skills needed to ensure safety;
• Encourage victims to increase their self-esteem, decrease feelings of guilt and shame of the abuse;
• Help victims to overcome psychological consequences including emotional distress resulting from the abuse;
• Provide counselling and organise medical, social and legal support.

The long-term objectives are:
• Lower the risk of re-victimisation;
• Lower the risk of aggressive behaviour in future relationships;
• Contribute to safety and well-being;
• Disseminate information about domestic violence and help professionals to develop necessary skills and competencies needed to provide support.

Activities

UM3Young women and children participate in a programme that will include psychotherapy sessions and counselling for victims of intimate partner violence, social support to women and children affected by domestic violence, training and supervising of a group of volunteers at a helpline for youth problems aimed to enhance skills needed for psychological support to children and teens who have experienced domestic abuse or witnessed intimate partner violence, seminars for professionals from other NGOs and government agencies working with victims of intimate partner violence and their families.

Collaboration with the BEARR Trust

Help Impact co-funded this project with a UK charity the BEARR Trust. BEARR concentrates on health and social welfare issues, especially the care of vulnerable groups. We are very excited to partner with BEARR on our first joint funding of a project with another charity.

Please read an opinion of an expert in domestic and gender based violence Ksenia Meshkova here.