Latest News CHILDREN: HIDDEN VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC ABUSE CHILDREN: HIDDEN VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC ABUSE Every year almost 1 million children are affected by domestic abuse across the UK – either by witnessing abuse between family members or falling victim themselves. This can be extremely distressing and often causes lasting trauma which impacts the rest of their lives. Your help means we can be there to support them when they most need it. In a recent survey, 79% of mothers in our refuges reported that they had left their abusive partner because they feared for the safety of their children. When women and children flee, it is refuges like ours who provide them with a new home, sanctuary and safety. How Hestia Helps Every year, 30,000 children across the UK are made homeless after fleeing domestic abuse with their mums. Each year, Hestia provides a safe home for more than 600 of these children who would otherwise face homelessness or would be forced to remain in an abusive and dangerous situation. Help Hestia’s refuges be there for them when the flee. At Hestia we are dedicated to provide children and family workers in our refuges who provide practical and emotional support tailored specifically for the children who arrive with their mums. Our children & family workers support children in many ways, including: Conventional and creative therapy, Stay and play sessions, Activities and day trips during the summer play schemes Working with local school to help them return to education as soon as possible. We have learnt the value of offering a specialist service for children which prioritises their needs. Supported to express their feelings, children are more able to recover from their traumatic experiences. With the right help, they can do well at school and with carefully selected activities; they are able to make friends with other children within the refuge and begin to bond with their mum again. “…Both the children and family workers were fantastic – really helpful. [My sons] told their children’s worker things they had never been able to say to me. They were painting pictures of things that had happened, using stickers to show how they felt about things.” Kiera*, Hestia refuge resident and mum to two boys.