Q. What if I need a refuge worker out of hours?

If you need advice or help out of hours you should contact your local police station who will contact us.

Q. What happens when I first arrive at the refuge?

When you first arrive we will take a few details from you to make sure that we are the service that you need then you will be shown around the building and to your unit. You will find all of our staff friendly and understanding.

Q. What happens if I have no clothes/possessions when I arrive?

We understand that many women have left their home with little or nothing. We have emergency clothing and other essential items.

Q. How long will I have to stay at the the refuge?

Your length of stay is really dependent on your circumstances. Some women only stay a couple of nights or until they can return safely to their own home others apply for housing and are with us for a few months depending on the current housing situation in Darlington.

Q. I don't want to leave my pet what should I do?

Although we do not allow pets in the refuge we do offer a pet fostering scheme. We offer homes to dogs cats and even rats!

Q. I am thinking about leaving my partner but have no money of my own.

There are various benefits which you may be entitled to and some can be paid even if you are working. We will help you apply for any benefits that you are entitled to and for housing if that is what you need, we can also put you in contact with legal services.

Q. What happens if the refuge is full?

If the refuge is full we will find you alternative accommodation in a nearby refuge.

Q. I do not want to leave home but feel that I need someone to talk to about my situation.

We find that many women do not want to leave their partners but find it hard to cope, this is why we offer confidential meetings in safe environments.

Q. I want to stay in my own home, how can I protect myself from my partner?

Under the Family Law Act 1996, many people experiencing domestic violence can apply for court orders against their abusers i.e.: someone you live or have lived with, someone who shares parental responsibility for your child or someone who you have agreed to marry. These orders can prevent the abusive person from entering your home. The courts can attach a power of arrest so that if the order is not obeyed, the abuser can be taken to court by the police.

If you are on income support or have a low income you may be able to get legal aid.


Home page - Celebrating 40 years of saving lives

Scared to leave? Scared to stay?   "The wonder of it is not that women find it hard to leave the scene of the violence but that so many find the courage to do so" Victim support report, 1992 Women often want the violence to end not the...

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About us

About us Family Help Darlington CIO was formed and registered as a charity on 13 February 2013 (registered charity number 1150798) and took over all work from Family Help from 31st March 2013 (registered charity number 506051). Family Help, the...

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