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COMMUNITY SUPPORT

Community advice and support

Kiran’s community support provides essential free confidential advice and support primarily to South Asian women and children who have been subjected to domestic abuse.   Our support workers can fluently speak the dominant South Asian languages.

If you are not from a South Asian background and require urgent support, we will assist where possible.

Key features of our community advice and support service:

  • Providing one to one culturally sensitive emotional support.

  • Allowing and encouraging women to have their voices heard.

  • Ensuring women and their dependent children have safe accommodation and are informed about their housing options.

  • Advising on appropriate safety and support planning to ensure women make informed choices so that they either remain or leave an abusive relationship safely.

  • Supporting women to apply and manage their welfare benefits and having a 100% success rate in overturning wrongful decisions through appeals.

  • Planning and encouraging women to arrange coffee mornings and events to help them learn new skills and build on their social and mental wellbeing.   

Advocacy & advice:

Through advocacy and advice we will help women to feel empowered.  This is done by providing women with details of the options available to them enabling them to make informed decisions.  

Case study 1:

“My husband never slapped, bruised or raised his hand at me. Therefore, why would I leave him? I was brought up to believe that divorce was wrong and to never discuss what happens behind closed doors to anyone outside of our household.

My husband had severe mental health difficulties and my in-laws said it was my duty as a wife to care for him regardless of his behaviour towards me. Added to this, my son had behavioural difficulties and my daughter had developmental delay. My husband constantly blamed me and said I was a bad mother and deserved to be sworn at and treated as a slave.

 

I attended a coffee morning by Kiran and they helped me to understand what emotional and verbal abuse consisted of.  I soon realized that this was the abuse I had been suffering from for a long time.  However, my community never taught me that this was wrong and unacceptable.   Kiran helped me to understand the various forms of abuse and how such abuse was not to be tolerated. I could finally express my emotions and allow my truth to unravel. I was provided with a safe haven for myself and my children.

Before contacting Kiran, I would discipline my children by smacking them as this was what I was taught as being the right form of punishment. Kiran referred me to parenting classes, helped me to work positively with social services and to learn how to best support my children.  They worked with me to understand my son had attention deficit hyperactive disorder and my daughter had learning difficulties.  I had no idea before. Kiran helped me to obtain a statement of special needs to help both of my children.
 
I was given an unfurnished property in bad condition. Through re-settlement support, my support worker overturned the council's decision and I was offered a permanent council property and awarded a grant to help start a new life for my family.

I have now restarted my life as a confident and independent woman. I am ready to tackle and build a positive future. This process has allowed me to find my voice and to live a life free from abuse.”

Positive Quotes:

“I was given support through this traumatic time in my life, knowing I had someone to call when I needed them - made this whole experience better for me”

“I am so thankful to Kiran Support Services for understanding my cultural background and empowering me to have my voice heard and understanding all forms of abuse is wrong”

Wider community

We offer support to residents in East London.

Women of all ages can access our outreach service via:

email: [email protected] 

phone: 0208 558 1986

My passport has expired, can I still make an immigration application ? 

Yes.

I do not have my documentation, can I still apply?

Yes.

My husband has never physically been violent to me. It’ is only mental stress. I don’t think I can apply?

Yes you can but contact us to discuss further.

I don’t think I have a visa anymore because my husband refused to apply to extend it for me. Can I still apply? 

Contact us to discuss further.

KIRAN HELPLINE - CALL US NOW ON 020 8558 1986

Phone lines are open Monday - Friday : 9.30 am - 4.30 pm

IN CASE OF EMERGENCY CALL THE POLICE ON 999

Mother and a Child

How we've helped

Saadiya

“Saadiya came to our refuge with her son, after fleeing domestic abuse from her husband. She came to the UK in 2016 on a spousal visa and obtained indefinite leave to remain under destitute domestic violence with the help of Kiran Support Services. Saadiya's husband treated her like a slave having to do all the household chores. She was verbally, physically, emotionally and financially abused by her husband. He didn't allow Saadiya to go anywhere and to have contact with her family. She suffered a lot of physical. Emotional and financial abuse at the hand of her husband and In-laws. However finally after speaking to someone at her sons’s nursery she gets the courage to contact police who referred her to Kiran Support Services where she was offered temporary accommodation and support.

Saadiya received one-to-one and practical support from refuge staff to claim welfare benefits and attended life skills courses. She was referred to attend counselling.  She was supported to make informed choices about her future and slowly she became more positive about life and started gaining her confidence back.  She received help in applying to the borough of choice to make a homelessness application and further received re-settlement support. Saadiya has now gained a paid employment and living a stress and abuse free life with her son in a borough of her choice. “

Iram

I had just turned 18 years old and was new to the country, I could not speak much English and I feared for my life, when I ran out of my family home with just my passport to the nearest police station.


I was then referred to KSS by my social worker. The refuge support worker understood my situation and did not judge me when I told her my dad was forcing me to marry my first cousin back home. I felt heard and believed not just by my support worker but also my counsellor. 
 

When I first arrived in the refuge I felt alone, depressed and scared, but with the support from KSS and my case worker I was not just provided a safe place to sleep but was emotionally supported through counselling and one to one sessions.  


I was also worried about money as I could not apply for benefits, however KSS financially supported me in buying food and clothes as I had nothing while my immigration fought my case. 
My caseworker helped me enrol onto a training scheme which led to employment and this boosted my self- esteem and confidence. I also felt safe as I was supported in getting a Forced Marriage Protection order against my dad. If it wasn’t for KSS I would probably be stuck in a forced marriage. KSS changed my life. "
 

Copyright 2020

Kiran Support Services