Staying Home Leaving Violence

The Staying Home Leaving Violence program helps women and children escaping domestic violence to remain safely in their homes.

Services funded under the program work with the police and courts to remove the violent family member so that if she chooses, the victim and children can stay in the home.

Clients receive support services ranging from practical assistance such as installing security measures in their homes and help with financial, legal and personal problems.

There are eighteen Staying Home Leaving Violence services throughout the state.

why is this program important?

The Staying Home Leaving Violence program was developed in response to evidence that domestic violence is the major reason why women and children become homeless.

Being forced to leave home because of domestic violence means women and children are forced to change schools, and lose social support networks. 

This puts families at increased risk of homelessness, stress, depression and poverty.  

Research on the Staying Home Leaving Violence program has shown that it can help avoid these outcomes by assisting women and their children to maintain safe, stable accommodation and by assisting women to stay in employment.

The program recognises that victims of domestic violence have the right to choose to stay safely in their home, and removal of the offender from the home holds the abusive person responsible for the violence.

who benefits?

The Staying Home Leaving Violence program is targeted at women aged over 18 years (and their children), who have separated from a violent partner or family member and choose to remain in their own home, or in another home of their choice. 

The projects are located in eighteen communities across NSW. The program gives priority to groups and communities where domestic violence is more prevalent or where people may find it harder to access support.

what does the program deliver?

Staying Home Leaving Violence provides funding for 18 services across NSW. Caseworkers assist clients with their choice to separate from a violent partner and safely stay in their own home by:

  • conducting comprehensive risk assessments and safety audits
  • upgrading security in the home (through the use of brokerage funding)
  • developing personalised safety plans
  • working with the police and local courts to remove the offender
  • providing court support and advocacy in applying for Apprehended Violence Orders and at family court proceedings
  • providing case work to address financial and tenancy issues, and counselling support
  • providing referrals to legal advice and other support services.

Staying Home Leaving Violence services also raise awareness within the community about the dynamics of domestic violence, and the rights of women and children to stay in the home and have the violent person removed.

how does it work?

Services are provided through eighteen Staying Home Leaving Violence services throughout the state. Sixteen are provided by non-government agencies funded by Community Services while Housing and NSW Police auspice one service each. 

Seven services are in metropolitan locations, and eleven in regional and rural locations.

A key aspect of the program is coordination with relevant local services to ensure that effective services are delivered to clients.

These services include police, local courts, Women’s Domestic Violence Court Assistance Services, NSW Health, Housing, local non-government organisations such as Aboriginal Medical Services and Community Services.

what funding is attached to this program?

Funded projects report to Community Services on an annual basis via a secure online database and a Self Assessment Form.

In 2010/11, the budget for the Staying Home Leaving Violence program was $ 2.5 million.

what’s happening in 2011/12?

A Staying Home Leaving Violence training package is being developed and is due to be delivered to practitioners in late 2011.

The training package will include resources and materials for Staying Home Leaving Violence practitioners to use when conducting awareness raising campaigns to promote women’s right to avoid homelessness when escaping an abusive relationship.

Key links and resources

The program operates in the following locations:

Bega – 6492 6239
Blacktown – 9677 1962
Campbelltown – 1800 077 760
Dubbo – 6883 1561
Eastern Sydney – 0439 414 673
Fairfield/Liverpool – 9602 7795
Kempsey –6562 2272
Lake Macquarie – 4943 9255
Parramatta/Holroyd - 9636 8437
Maitland/Cessnock–4937 1927
Moree – 6752 8027
Newcastle – 4926 3577
Penrith – 4721 2499
Redfern – 9699 9036
Shoalhaven – 4421 7400
Wollongong – 4255 5333
Wyong/Gosford – 4356 2672
Tamworth - 6766 4596

A fact sheet about exclusion orders has been developed to provide information regarding the legal option to stay at home.

The fact sheet is also available in twelve community languages: Arabic, Chinese, Kiswahili, Korean, Persian, Samoan, Somali, Spanish, Thai, Tongan, Turkish, Vietnamese.

Peak bodies and other agencies
To report suspected child abuse or neglect, call the Child Protection Helpline on 132 111 (24 hours/7 days)