Hometruths celebrates its first anniversary early in 2012 following a very successful year, providing services to survivors of domestic violence and abuse in Swindon and Wiltshire.
There were 2,734 incidents of domestic abuse in Swindon alone in 2010/11, but Hometruths was founded by Mary Cosker and Kim Swinden to reach the people who do not report harm from a partner, ex-partner or family member to the police or other agencies.
“We have worked very hard this year to establish Hometruths within Swindon and the surround areas,” said Mary “We are keen to build on these foundations to continue the good work with our partner agencies and develop sustainable services for anyone experiencing emotional, physical or psychological harm”
Co-founder Kim believes Hometruths is just scratching the surface of damage being done behind the net curtains. “Using the national estimate that 80 per cent of people do not report, potentially there are a further 11,000 incidents in Swindon that remain hidden. We recognise that many people are too afraid to speak out about their experiences of abuse. Perpetrators of domestic abuse are skilled at manipulating and many survivors don’t recognise what they are going through.
“Our aim is to offer Hometruths’ specialist services to make a difference to individuals as well as make change within our society.”
As well as one-to-one support, Hometruths coordinates engagement groups:
Tears Survivors’ Forum gives survivors in Swindon a voice to affect change within local services;
The Freedom Programme is a weekly group for survivors to understand the behaviour of their abusive partner and the impact on themselves and their children;
The New Beginnings pilot group to start early this year will be for survivors free from an abusive relationship, but who have lost their identity, confidence or self esteem, and feel daunted by the future.
Hometruths also provides training to professionals and agencies in the statutory, voluntary and commercial sectors.