Little Village press release
For immediate release 11:00AM on Wednesday 17 March 2021
Contact: Emma Gibbs 07593 135790
Baby bank reports rise in domestic violence against mums
Baby bank charity, Little Village, has today released new figures showing that the number of women it supports due to domestic violence has increased in the last year.
The figures show that in the last year the charity has received over 600 referrals from professionals like social workers and midwives where domestic violence was cited as a reason for support. This is a rise of over 10% since the previous year.
London-based Little Village is like a foodbank but for clothes, toys and equipment for babies and children up to the age of 5. It has supported over 11,000 children since being set up in 2016. The charity has seen demand for its service soar during the pandemic, with double the number of families seeking help last year, as compared to 2019.
Sophie Livingstone MBE, CEO of Little Village, said:
“The tragic death of Sarah Everard, in an area many of our staff, volunteers and families come from, has deeply affected all of us. Too many women don’t feel safe on our streets, and the figures we have released today highlight the impact of abuse that women are subjected to within homes across the capital too.
“We support several mothers each week who have suffered abuse at the hands of their partners or family members. Quite often women escape in just the clothes they are wearing and need to start from scratch with clothes, nappies, toys and buggies for their children.
“With violence against women in the spotlight and the question of making misogyny a hate crime being debated in the Police and Crime Bill in parliament this week, we want to make people aware of the consequences of the abuse that too many women face each day in their own homes.”
Lisa* (not her real name) was first referred to Little Village for help having fled from a violent relationship with her ex-husband. She said this week:
“It was an arranged marriage and the violence started straight away. He was physically and sexually abusing me and then he would go to work and lock me inside the house, I couldn’t leave. This went on for over five years.
“I felt that I would either die, or that my child and I would end up very, very damaged. I called a women’s refuge for help and they called the police who got me out.
“We stayed at the refuge and they helped me to get back on my feet and referred me to charities, including Little Village, for help. I remember crying at the time because my child didn’t have any toys so I was really glad that Little Village was able to provide these things for me when I had nothing.”
Little Village said that this week it will be encouraging its volunteers, staff members and referral partners to take part in the Government’s re-opened consultation on Violence Against Women and Girls.
Little Village has a virtual shop on its website where people can pay for essentials like toiletries and period products for the women it supports, as well as a fundraising page which is raising money to enable it to support growing numbers of families.
Notes to editors
For more information contact: Emma Gibbs firstname.lastname@example.org or 07593 135790
Little Village is fundraising to enable it to support families during the pandemic, click here to support.
About Little Village
Little Village is like a foodbank, but for clothes, toys and equipment for babies and children up to the age of 5. We’ve grown to be one of the largest ‘baby banks’ in the UK, supporting over 11,000 children since we launched in 2016. Families are referred to us via a network of over 1,800 professionals such as midwives and social workers. As a volunteer-led movement of parents committed to alleviating child poverty, Little Village’s vision is that every child in the capital has the essential items they need to thrive.
More about the Government’s consultation into violence against women and girls.