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The Haven Wolverhampton Newsletter
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Welcome to our Winter Newsletter.

Sending you warm greetings from all of us at The Haven. Usually, at this time, everyone is in a jolly good mood as we get ourselves ready for Christmas and end of year festivities. Even as we have come out of lockdown, it is clear that this year, Christmas will be very different for most of us.

For the women and children we support at The Haven, not much will change. It will still be a difficult time for them as they try to come to terms with the experiences they have endured, while being away from everything and everyone they have ever known.

We will still be providing the full Christmas experience from a festive dinner with all the trimmings in our refuges, through to ensuring every woman and child has gifts to open on Christmas morning. This will only be possible with your help. You can find out more below about how you can support Christmas at The Haven this year but first, some updates on what's been happening since August. Even in the midst of so much anxiety, confusion and uncertainty, our duty of care never sleeps.
Our counselling team has grown tremendously this year as we continue to support over 200 women a month in 10 different languages! At the heart of the counselling services we provide is Person-Centred Therapy (PCT) which focuses on the women’s voices, feelings, emotions and individual perceptions. Most of them enter the service with severe depression and severe anxiety. By the time they have completed their counselling sessions with us, most sit at the ‘mild’ rating for both depression and anxiety! This is thanks to our qualified counsellors supporting specialist and complex cases like childhood abuse, historical abuse, diagnosed mental health conditions, self-harming behaviour etc. Having experienced specialist counsellors on the team, makes all the difference. We are committed to providing a counselling service that leads to successful outcomes and promising futures!
We have just introduced sensory corners and sensory walls for the gardens - an invitation for children to enjoy tactile, visual and auditory play; exploring through their senses (see images above). Thank you to The Rotary Club for their kind donation to fund play equipment which went towards these sensory play areas.

We have also introduced Virtual Reality therapy (VR therapy) with brand new headsets (see comment below). VR Therapy can include a variety of different experiences from day trips out to theme parks, to educational trips to museums or underwater diving experience learning about different marine life, to mindfulness and meditation experiences on a beach or forest. This way they can escape to different places and experience new things during COVID-19. 
Since COVID-19 happened in March, most of the women and children were confined to their refuge location and unable to go out. All of the outdoor venues for activities during the summer and spring period were cancelled due to social distancing restrictions.

Our CYP team had to get creative and find venues that could be used exclusively for a day, to enable a refuge to participate in activities as a ‘social bubble’. Earlier feedback suggested that the children wanted to do something near water.

The children and their mums were able to get respite and bond with each other in a different setting. They were able to go and enjoy the outdoors whilst doing something they had not done before.

The children were excited to learn how the locks work to allow the boats to pass through as well as learn about some of the wildlife along the canals.
Christmas at The Haven
To reduce the risk of transmitting COVID-19 across our refuges, we will not be accepting any physical donations of food, toys or gifts this year. But we hope you will still be able to help us to make it magical? You can help through any of the options below. Click on an image to find out more.
 
HELP US WIN £1,000!
We’d be really grateful if you could nominate us for Ecclesiastical’s 12 days of giving. Click on the image, click ‘nominate now’ and enter our details. Charity reg: 1065427. Charity type: Community. Nominations close at midnight the day before each draw and draws will take place each weekday from 7 December to 22 December. Thank you.
We are delighted to be sharing with you our official merchandise – just in time for Christmas. From t-shirts to mugs, notepads to phone cases – three thoughtfully crafted designs that represent our ethos, on a range of products that you, your friends and your family will LOVE – all in time to get them delivered and under the tree. In the new year when our brand new website is up and running, we will share more about each designs and the stories that inspire them.
For now, HAPPY SHOPPING!
Click to shop our diverse collection
What happened to Banaz Mahmod?
The harrowing tale of Banaz Mahmod is a reminder of how society and the systems in place fail women when we do not believe them. Banaz did not want to suffer in silence. She knew that she was being abused. She knew that she needed help. She recorded her experiences and she went to the police multiple times to no avail. In September, her "honour killing" was recounted in a harrowing series that aired on ITV. Honour stars Keeley Hawes as a police officer investigating the 2006 murder.
 
Click here to watch Honour on ITV Catchup
Orange the World for Safe Workplaces
As with Banaz Mahmod above, the story of the late Judith Nibbs who inadvertently predicted her own brutal murder is another sad reminder of why we are here. She left work with the words: "If I'm not in on Friday, I might be dead." As we commemorate 16 Days of activism this year, we would like employers to start thinking about the role that they can play in addressing domestic abuse and how they can make workplaces safer for women. 75% of women who experience domestic abuse are targeted at work. Yet only 5% of workplaces have a Domestic Abuse Workplace Policy. We have published a FREE toolkit on our website and it is a good place to start for anyone who wants to take action.
Click here to find out how you can get involved
Tasty donations make a real difference to charity
Pan-Asian noodle bar Chop and Wok Wolverhampton is working in partnership with The Haven, which supports women and children vulnerable to domestic abuse and homelessness across the city.

Chop and Wok have been donating 20 noodle boxes each week, half vegetable-based and the other half meat-based, as well as portions of prawn crackers and bottles of water.
Click here to read the full article
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See you next year! 

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a bright and prosperous 2021.

If you are experiencing domestic abuse, please do not suffer in silence. There is no excuse and remember abuse isn't just physical. It can be mental or financial. It can be control or manipulation.

We are available via our helpline 24/7 to support you if you need us. Please share this newsletter using the links below to help us raise awareness of our services.  
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Our mailing address is: 18 Waterloo Road, Wolverhampton, WV1 4BL
Charity Reg No. 1065427 

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