Support Options

Anyone can make a referral to us, either yourself, a friend, a family member or another agency. Please ensure that you have the woman’s consent before making a referral on her behalf. We support women who have experienced domestic abuse whether recently or in the past. The initial support meetings are generally in our office base but we can arrange to meet you in a safe place if you are unable to attend.

At North Ayrshire Women’s Aid we can also make referrals to other services which could include: Rape Crisis, Money Matters or The Home Security Project.

What happens once we receive a referral?

Referrals to us come into the Active Assessment Team and we respond to all referrals within 48 hours. We will offer you an initial appointment to discuss support options. During this assessment, we also undertake the CAADA DASH risk assessment which is also used by Police Scotland and other agencies.

Following on from this, we provide 1-to-1 emotional and/or practical support for the first 4-6 weeks. This will be carried out by the Active Assessment Team to build a support plan around each individual’s needs. This could include seeking refuge, finding a lawyer, or going through options if you are planning to leave, as well as dealing with the emotional effects of having experienced domestic abuse.

After the 4-6 weeks, you will be allocated an Outreach worker depending on the area that you live in North Ayrshire. The Outreach worker will continue to provide emotional and practical support for as long as is required.

Support Group Work

We have a number of support groups that are available to all women in the service. These are:

  • Emotions Group – working through emotions, coping techniques, building strength, self-esteem and confidence.
  • Domestic Abuse Recovery Group – moving on from and understanding the different types of abuse, recognising warning signs and red flags, and breaking the cycle of abuse.
  • Friday Drop-in – a social group that do cooking, arts & crafts, there for a chat and a cup of tea.
  • Write to Recovery – recovering from trauma through the power of writing your story.
  • IT Group – learning new skills, increasing digital skills and knowledge and support with applying for benefits, jobs, etc.
  • Art Therapy Group – using creativity as a healthy outlet for dealing with trauma.
  • Therapy Group – Indian head massage and three point acupuncture.

Refuge Support

We provide refuge accommodation for those in need with properties throughout North Ayrshire. There is a refuge worker available Mon-Fri 9-5pm and they also provide emotional and practical support with things such as housing, benefits, lawyers appointments, etc. When you move on from refuge, you will be provided with follow on support from the refuge worker to support you to settle into your new accommodation whilst being offered continued support from the Outreach service.

There is an out of hours on-call service for all women within refuge. This is to provide emergency support for the hours when staff are not available. Click here to learn more about refuge.

Advocacy Service

Our advocacy worker provides 1-to-1 emotional and practical support to women who are at highest risk of harm, working from the point of crisis. They can provide support with attending court, lawyers appointments, social work, etc.

With specialist knowledge and understanding of domestic abuse and its effects on women, children and young people, we will listen to you, validate your experience and provide support.

Children & Young People Outreach Service

We have a children’s service that directly support on a 1-to-1 basis children who have experienced domestic abuse, either via their parents or themselves. Anyone can make a referral to the service including a parent, social work, teacher, etc.

The workers work with school age children from 5-18 years old. They go into schools and support children and young people on a 1-to-1 to help them understand what healthy relationships are as well as recognising signs of abuse. This support includes discussing keeping themselves safe, who would they talk to if they needed help, what is important to them, and coping with anything they’ve witnessed or experienced.