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  • About DVConnect

    17th October, 2019 | by

    Who is DVConnect & what does DVConnect do?

     

    1. DVConnect helps Queenslanders find pathways to safety, away from domestic, family and sexual violence. We help women, men and children regardless of age, ability, ethnicity, gender identification or religion. We also help pets.
    2. DVConnect is a registered not-for-profit charity that has provided state-wide specialist domestic violence crisis counselling, intervention, information, referrals, safety planning and pathways to safety, (emergency transport and accommodation) for almost 20 years.
    3. DVConnect operates helplines; Womensline and Mensline, as well the Queensland Sexual Assault Helpline.
    4. Womensline is Queensland’s only free, 24/7 state-wide service available for anyone identifying as a female who is experiencing domestic violence. Womensline receives one call for help every 7 minutes. To access Womensline call 1800 811 811 anytime 24/7.
    5. DVConnect Mensline is a free, telephone crisis counselling referral, information and support line for any Queenslander identifying as male. Mensline offers counselling, referral and support for men who are experiencing violence, as well as men who are using violence, to help them amend their behaviours. To access Mensline call 1800 600 636 between 9am – midnight, 7 days.
    6. The Sexual Assault Helpline is a free telephone support and counselling service available to any Queenslander, regardless of gender identification who has been sexually assaulted or abused. It is also for those who are concerned someone they care about might have been assaulted/abused. To access the Sexual Assault Helpline call 1800 010 120 between 7.30am – 11.30pm, 7 days.
    7. DVConnect is a specialist trauma counselling partner of 1800RESPECT the 24/7 National confidential online and telephone specialist counselling, information and referral service.
    8. DVConnect operates Pets In Crisis in collaboration with RSPCA QLD to ensure pets of families who are escaping violence have safe alternative accommodation.
    9. DVConnect provides Workplace Domestic Violence Training and policy assistance to help educate Queensland workplaces on how to respond to the signs of domestic and family violence.
    10. DVConnect operates Bella’s Sanctuary, a purpose-built 5 unit, 19 bed medium-term accommodation residence on the Gold Coast. It is available for women and children once they have left a refuge/shelter, giving them time to rebuild their lives after experiencing domestic violence.

     

    Helplines

    Womensline: Crisis Counselling

    • Womensline is Queensland’s only 24/7 free, telephone state-wide service or any Queenslander identifying as a female who may be experiencing domestic and family violence.
    • Womensline is available by calling 1800 811 811 anytime 24/7.
    • Womensline arranges practical assistance such as emergency transport and emergency accommodation away from a violent home, as well as crisis counselling and intervention.
    • Womensline receives one call every seven minutes.
    • It has has been funded by the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women since 2002.

     

    Mensline:  Crisis Counselling

    • Mensline is a free, telephone crisis counselling referral, information and support line for any Queenslander identifying as male.
    • Mensline is available by calling 1800 600 636 between 9am – midnight, 7 days.
    • Mensline offers counselling, referral and support for both men who are experiencing domestic violence, as well as men who are using violence in their relationships, to help them amend their behaviours.
    • Mensline has been funded by the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women since 2002.

     

    Sexual Assault Helpline:  Counselling

    • The Sexual Assault Helpline is a free telephone support and counselling to any Queenslander who has been sexually assaulted or abused.
    • It is also for those who are concerned someone they care about might have been assaulted/abused.
    • The Sexual Assault Helpline can be accessed by calling 1800 010 120 between 7.30am – 11.30pm, 7 days.
    • The Sexual Assault Helpline has been funded by the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women since 2009.

     

    1800RESPECT:  Counselling

    • DVConnect is a specialist trauma counselling partner of 1800RESPECT, the 24/7 National confidential online and telephone specialist counselling, information and referral service.
    • 1800RESPECT provides support for people experiencing, or who are at risk of experiencing, sexual assault, domestic or family violence, their friends and family, as well as workers and professionals supporting someone experiencing, or at risk of experiencing violence.
    • DVConnect is one of five not-for-profit partners 1800RESPECT works with. The others are: safe steps Family Violence Response Centre (Victoria), Women’s Safety Services SA (South Australia), Canberra Rape Crisis Centre (ACT) and On the Line (Victoria). 

     

    Pets In Crisis:

    • Often the safety of pets is seen as a barrier to not leaving an abusive relationship. In response to this, DVConnect operates Pets In Crisis Program in collaboration with RSPCA QLD.
    • This program ensure pets of families who are escaping violence have safe alternative accommodation.
    • The program cares for the pets of families experiencing domestic violence. It provides food, safe shelter, as well as veterinary services.
    • Last financial year Pets In Crisis cared for almost 300 pets.
    • Our Pets in Crisis program is administered by calling DVConnect on 1800 811 811.

     

    Workplace DV Training & Policy

    • DVConnect provides tailored workplace training on domestic, family and sexual violence.
    • The purpose of this training is to ensure Queensland organisations are able to do their part to support their employees who may be experiencing domestic, family and/or sexual violence.
    • DVConnect also helps organisations create Domestic and Family Violence Policies. As an accredited specialist provider of domestic and family violence services, DVConnect has a deep understanding of the complex presentations, impacts and trauma as a consequence of domestic and family violence. We have an understanding of risk, and managing this risk, in collaboration with survivors, with the intention of keeping them safe and empowered. We acknowledge the differential impacts and intersectional experience of violence in terms of prevalence, risk, severity of violence, culture. As well as identity for Indigenous women, young women, pregnant women, women who are separating, women living in regional and remote Queensland and women living with disability.

     

    Bella’s Sanctuary

    • DVConnect continues to be at the forefront in providing contemporary domestic and family violence support, adapting to the changing needs of Queenslanders impacted by domestic, family and sexual violence.
    • On 27 August 2019, DVConnect officially opened Bella’s Sanctuary, our transitional housing residence for medium-term accommodation for women and children affected by domestic and family violence.  
    • DVConnect strongly believes that domestic and family violence ends with a community-wide integrated response. Guided by this principal and a focus on reducing homelessness following domestic violence, or victims returning to their abusers, we partnered with Mirvac Residential and Queensland builders Halcyon, together with 90 building industry suppliers. Together, we designed and constructed Australia’s first commercially funded bridging accommodation residence on the Gold Coast with a total in-kind contribution of almost $1.7 million.
    • Bella’s does not receive any funding. We rely solely on donations from our community to operate the residence.

     

    Funding

    • DVConnect is primarily funded by the Queensland Government.
    • Our Womensline has been funded by the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women since 2002.
    • Our Mensline has been funded by the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women since 2002.
    • Our Sexual Assault Helpline has been funded by the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women since 2009.
    • Bella’s Sanctuary DOES NOT receive any funding. We rely solely on donations from our community to operate this residence.
    • Our work is made possible not only by the Queensland Government, but by the amazing support we receive from our corporate and community partners who also believe that domestic, family and sexual violence must end and who are doing their part to ensure that happens.
    • DVConnect is a Registered Charity (Public Benevolent Institution entity subtype) with the ACNC. It is endorsed by the ATO as a Deductible Gift Recipient has authority to fundraise in Queensland under Charity Number CH1459.

     

    Partners

    • QSuper have funded a full-time Crisis Counsellor every year since 2016. This means 4000 additional calls can now be answered yearly. More
    • Halcyon, Mirvac and 90 generous building suppliers built Bella’s Sanctuary, a $1.7m bridging-accommodation residence. More
    • Maurice Blackburn provide pro bono professional services, as well as fundraising throughout the year. More
    • Impact Office Supplies provide complimentary merchandise to help spread the DVConnect message. More
    • RSPCA Queensland operate the Pets In Crisis Program that cares for pets while their families are relocating to safe accommodation. More 
    • Queensland Rail donate complimentary long-haul travel to families who need to leave the town or city they reside in because of violence. More

     

     

    Our Vision

    Our aim is for all relationships to be free from domestic, family and sexual violence.

    Our Purpose

    Creating pathways for a life free from violence and fear.

    Our Values

    • Integrity
    • Compassion
    • Accountability
    • Respect
    • Empowerment

     

     

    We can help you

    Call 1800 811 811

  • Become a Corporate Partner

    17th October, 2019 | by

    Become a Corporate Partner

    Our approach to corporate partnerships is simple, we strive to build mutual value and understand what you’re trying to achieve as a business. We love to work collaboratively with organisations who share our values. We recognise that every organisation is different and will work with you to develop a tailored partnership that demonstrates your impact and contribution to ending domestic, family and sexual violence.

    Your financial support enables us to help more Queenslanders escape domestic, family and sexual violence by providing emergency transport, emergency accommodation, as well as crisis counselling.

    We are very grateful to have the support of the following amazing partners. Without them, we couldn’t do what we do. If you are interested in being a DVConnect Corporate Partner, please email us at

     

    QSuper

    QSuper have been partners of DVConnect since 2016. QSuper have generously provided funding for one full time crisis counsellor every year since 2016. Because of their support, an additional 4000 phone calls are answered every year. Their Staff Volunteer Team also give up their time every year to help organise and execute the Candle Lighting Vigil held on Remembrance Day. They also hold Domestic Violence morning teas to raise additional funds for those affected by domestic and family violence. Learn More

     

    Halcyon           Mirvac

    Halcyon and Mirvac have been partners of DVConnect since 2018 when a collaboration was formed to build a 5 unit, $1.67 million dollar bridging-accommodation residence. Lifestyle community developers Halcyon and listed property group Mirvac, along with over 90 of their suppliers donated their time, labour and materials to build the property. The residence comprises 2 one-bedroom units, 2 two-bedroom units and 1 three-bedroom unit. Each unit has its own kitchenette, living area and courtyard. The facility also has a communal kitchen and living room, a play area, garage, a dedicated office space for DVConnect support services, as well as an alarm, state-of-the-art security camera surveillance and keypad entry on all doors and gates. Learn more

    Maurice Blackburn

    Maurice Blackburn Women’s Network have donated $10,000 to DVConnect, as well as offering a variety of professional services pro bono. Maurice Blackburn have taken the Queensland Government’s Not Now, Not Ever Pledge which encourages both the corporate sector and community organisations to pledge their commitment to act against domestic and family violence. Maurice Blackburn have always been committed to social justice and were instrumental to contributing to some of Australia’s most influential legal decision, including equal pay for women. Learn more

    RSPCA Queensland

    The RSPCA Queensland has been a partner of DVConnect since 2005, caring for almost 250 animals every year as part of our Pets In Crisis Program. These animals are in desperate need of accommodation because their family have escaped domestic and family violence situations. While their family go to emergency accommodation or a refuge, often animals are not permitted there. The RSPCA Queensland provides much needed veterinary care, as well as accommodation for up to 30 days. The equates to almost 7500 care days plus veterinary care.

    Impact Office Supplies commenced partnering with DVConnect in 2019. Supplying complimentary and discounted stationery items, as well as merchandise items to help DVConnect spread the word about how Queenslanders can get the help they need to find a pathway to safety, away from domestic and family violence.  A proud Australian-owned and operated company, Impact Office Supplies are passionate about what they do and the community they do it within. They offer procurement and distribution proficiencies across a wide range of office consumables including stationery, printer consumables, copy papers, canteen, janitorial, warehouse, PPE, print and promotional goods, furniture and third party logistics. Impact Office Supplies believe that the procurement and distribution of office consumables should be easy not hard, simple not complex.  Impact Office Supplies believe that being able to partner with DVConnect is important so they can continue to champion the cause to reduce domestic and family violence in Queensland. Learn more

     

    Queensland Rail

    Queensland Rail have been partners of DVConnect since 2010. Queensland Rail have generously provided Queenslanders escaping domestic violence through DVConnect with complimentary long-haul train travel. There are many occasions where it is not safe for a person to stay in the town or city they reside in, so it becomes necessary for them to be relocated. This is where the support of Queensland Rail comes in.

     

  • Safety Planning tips you need to know

    7th July, 2019 | by

    Whether you are staying in order to prepare for the right time to leave, or you have left, we can help you with essential safety tips.

     

    If you are staying:

    If you are staying in the relationship, think about what you can do to keep yourself safe, particularly at times when your partner becomes abusive, or you sense the situation is escalating. 

    • Create ‘signals’ for supportive neighbours, family or friends that let them know to come over or to call for help. For example, switch on a particular light, leave a curtain blind closed /open, phone or text a friend with an agreed cue or a message that will be a prompt or code for them to help in whatever way you have discussed.
    • Keep essential items like spare keys, money and important documents or copies of them, where you can get to them easily quickly.
    • Plan and practice (with your children) how you might escape from your home safely and quickly. Think about the safest exits so that when you feel that things are getting out of control you can leave quickly.
    • If possible, keep weapons and knives locked up or inaccessible (e.g. remove knife-blocks from kitchen benches).
    • Let trusted friends, family or neighbours know about the abuse and let them know about your safety plan.
    • Have a code (perhaps a word or phrase) that you can use with someone you trust by phone or text so they know you are in danger and need help from them or the police.
    • Teach your children that their responsibility during an incident is to stay safe – not to rescue you.
    • Program the police, taxi company, local support service and a family member’s or friend’s number into the speed dial on your phone.
    • Plan where you will go and how you will get there in case you need to leave in a hurry.
    • If possible, keep a Safety Diary. Record any instances of abuse, and try to include details, dates, times and photos. You may want to keep your Safety Diary at your doctor’s office, a friend’s house or electronically but remember to make sure it is secure (you could use a password, email it to someone you trust or hide it under another name).
    • Keep text messages your partner sends to you, and save online messages or posts made by your partner.
    • Ask a family member or friend if they can take care of your pets at their house, or regularly take the pets for walks.

     

    Helping your children

    You can help your child emotionally recover from domestic violence in many ways:

    • Protect children from violence by taking them to a safe place.
    • Get support to take action against the violence, this will show them that violence is not acceptable.
    • Reassure the child that none of the violent episodes were their fault in any way.
    • Tell them how much you love them and cuddle them often.
    • Encourage them to talk openly about their feelings.
    • Get extra help for your child if necessary.
    • Enlist a professional from a specialist domestic and family violence service to help provide your child with emotional support.
    • Tell the child that abusive behaviour is wrong and be a role model for other ways of managing anger and solving problems.
    • Seek professional help, such as counselling, for all family members.

     

    Helping your pets

    Together with the RSPCA Queensland we operate the Pets In Crisis Program.

    • Call us and ask about our Pets In Crisis Program. Call 1800 811 811 anytime.
    • Read more, or watch a video about our Pets In Crisis Program. Learn More.

     

    If you are planning to leave:

    • Hide a bag with clothes, medication, keys and other important items that you can either exit with easily or leave with someone you trust.
    • Put aside some money for travel expenses, accommodation and food if you have access to money.
    • Make copies of important documents, e.g. car registration, tax file number, title deeds, loan records, Medicare card, drivers licence, account details, prescriptions, passports etc and leave them with someone you trust or take photos of them and store them securely.
    • Take small items you may be able to sell, like jewellery.
    • If you have children take clothes for them, medical records and medication, bottles and some of their favourite toys.
    • If you have pets, take food and equipment needed for travelling (e.g. leash, cage, documentation).

     

    If you have left:

    The time after leaving an domestic violence situation can be very dangerous. The below tips help reduce this risk but you should be very vigalent during this time.

    • Report to police and apply for an ADVO.
    • If you have an ADVO carry a copy of it with you at all times and give a copy of it and a photo of your partner to your workplace and your children’s school so that they are aware of the situation.
    • Redirect your mail and get a post office box.
    • Only give your new address and phone number to those you really trust.
    • Get a new SIM card and phone and turn your call preferences set to Private so your new number cannot be saved.
    • Think about getting a spare SIM card or phone if you want to communicate with your ex-partner about children or pets.
    • Wherever possible, change your regular patterns of movement, e.g. travel to and from work by a different route, buy your groceries at a different shop, change the time and maybe location of regular appointments, maybe move your children to a new day care centre or school.
    • Ensure where you are staying is as safe as possible, e.g. security doors, lockable windows, motion- sensitive external lights etc.
    • Let key people know about your situation, e.g. your boss and other work colleagues, your children’s teachers, so they know not to give out your details or they can screen your calls etc.
    • Continue to seek support from the domestic and family violence services and medical practitioners during this time.
    • Block your partner on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, WhatsApp and any other forms of social media or communication. Consider setting up a new profile that is secure.  Read through Facebook and other social media platforms Safety Tips.

     

    If you, or someone you know is experiencing domestic, family or sexual violence, DVConnect can help you find a pathway to safety, away from violence. The DVConnect helplines are:

    • Womensline 1800 811 811, available 24/7
    • Mensline 1800 600 636 available from 9am – midnight, 7 days
    • Sexual Assault Helpline 1800 010 120, available from 7.30am – 11.30pm, 7 days.
    • For more visit www.DVConnect.org.

    For more, contact 

  • RSPCA Queensland

    20th June, 2019 | by

    RSPCA Queensland partner with us to operate Pets In Crisis

    In 2005 the RSPCA Queensland and DVConnect teamed up to help keep the pets of families escaping domestic and family violence safe while their family was rebuilding their lives. They created the Pets In Crisis Program, which provides safe accommodation, food and veterinary care to pets whose families cannot take them to a refuge with them. 

    For any pet lover whose animal is part of the family the thought of leaving them behind in an emergency is unthinkable.  The decision is made even harder when the need to leave is due to escalating or persistent domestic or family violence. Sadly, hundreds of Queenslanders are faced with this decision because the majority of refuges do not allow animals.

    Places available in refuges for the victims of domestic and family violence are scarce, and in Queensland none are able to accommodate pets. DVConnect counsellors regularly speak to Queenslanders whose intimate partners use violence or threats of it towards their pets. They do this to frighten and control them into staying. For children, moving without their special companions at this time compounds the loss and makes the trauma they are facing in their family life that much more intense.

    This is where the Pets In Crisis Program comes in. When families know that their pets will be cared for by professionals while they are finding safe, alternative accommodation, it helps decrease some of the pressure and stress of their situation. 

    Key Facts

    • The Pets In Crisis Program exists to care for pets whose families are escaping domestic and family violence.
    • Established in 2005, the Program is a collaboration between DVConnect and the RSPCA Queensland.
    • Each pet is given safe accommodation, food, and in most cases veterinary care.
    • The Program cares for almost 300 pets each year.
    • Pets can stay in the program for up to 28 days.
    • Any pet is accepted, provided there is a suitable place for them to be cared for.
    • The RSPCA Queensland provides and pays for each pet to be given a thorough health check by an RSPCA veterinarian. Sadly though, a lot of pets from domestic violence situations haven’t received the medical care they should have in their lives. This means more vet care is needed, which means more costs. Examples of a basic vet check-up for a dog include the dog being given flea, tick and worming medication, heartworm, as well as kennel cough injections. Also a lot of cases require specialist veterinary operations due to abuse the animal has suffered at the hand of the domestic violence abuser. 

    For more information about the Pets In Crisis Program, please visit:  Pets In Crisis

    To make a donation to Pets In Crisis 

     

Thank you DVConnect for saving my Mums life, and mine. You guys getting us out of there changed everything. Thank you so much. Life is good now! 

Our survivor has chosen to remain anonymous.

Read Survivor Stories

How your donation will help

  • Provides operational support to fund our bridging accommodation residence Bella's Sanctuary.
  • Provides emergency transport and accommodation for Queenslanders in crisis due to domestic and family violence.
  • Provides safety planning, crisis counselling and information to those impacted by domestic and family violence.
  • Educates Queenslanders on how to help family, friends and colleagues who have experienced, or are experiencing domestic and family violence.