We know that when someone seeks support, it might be the first, last or only time they reach out. We often only have one chance to respond with dignity and make a connection with a woman. Every interaction counts, honouring resistance matters. DVSM provides holistic and intensive case management directly to women and children in need. We walk alongside women and offer solutions to often complex situations. We will support women and children in seeking refuge and empower them to reconnect in their community. In addition to our case management, each week we spend hours implementing ‘no wrong door’ referrals to other services to ensure that women and children are supported and do not fall through the systemic gaps.
Our approach aims to be:
Informing: Offering new information or increasing an individual’s awareness about Domestic and Family Violence and homelessness, risks to their personal safety and wellbeing and ways to enhance their safety and wellbeing.
Empowering: Supporting individuals to restore dignity, power and control over their life, enabling them to exercise options and make informed decisions about their lives and set their own goals.
Enduring: Offering information and support that can be used by individuals now and after they leave our service, to stay safe and enhance their wellbeing.
The Wellbeing Wheel
"I am a unique person with unique experiences. I have rights and responsibilities. I respond to events and exercise choice. But violence and coercive control limit my options.” Follow My Lead, 2018.
Wellbeing matters to adults, children and young people and this includes their safety. Being ‘safe’ is more than being physically safe – it includes all aspects of your wellbeing.
DVSM defines wellbeing as being made up of nine interdependent areas each of which will look different in each person’s life. These nine areas are depicted in the wellbeing wheel, above and further explained, below. The value and weight of these will also change over time as a person’s needs, priorities and circumstance change.
DVSM works to support people’s rights, responsibilities and choices, working with your capacity to act and make decisions – this can be described as your ‘agency’.
When you are aware of your rights you are able to make informed choices.
It is important to recognise that your choices are not only informed by your rights but also by your responsibilities (which may be linked to your civil, cultural, family, community, spiritual connections including to land). If you are experiencing DFV, the coercive control you are experiencing can limit and undermine your capacity to make choices, exercise your rights and fulfil your responsibilities.
Love and Connection
Encompasses your family relationships, friends and connections with community, spiritual connection and connections to land.
Means feeling free from violence or the threat of it (violence could be psychological, verbal, physical, sexual, reproductive control, social, financial, property damage, stalking, image based or technological abuse).
Includes having opportunities to have a voice and be involved as a citizen and in the community.
Material Basics and Economic Wellbeing
Includes the provision of food, safe and adequate shelter, money and other basic human needs. Includes the economic resources you have available to support not only your material living conditions, but the control over these resources and conditions.
Includes physical health and nutrition, as well as mental health and self-esteem. Mental health is a key aspect of what it means to be healthy.
Is a continuous process throughout life. Elements of learning include the value of self-development for wellbeing.
Supportive Systems and Environments
Sitting across all areas, is the presence and provision of supportive systems and environments which support an individual’s wellbeing.