Domestic violence affects all women regardless of race, social standing, though national statistics indicate that BME women are more disproportionately affected than white women. They rarely access services designed to support victims of domestic violence because of a myriad of factors including language barriers, lack of information of what is available, effect on status if refugees or asylum seekers, fear to speak out because of the perceived shame it brings to families and/or becoming ostracised by their communities if they report the abuse.
There is also increasing evidence to suggest that men too are also becoming victims of domestic violence of a different kind. As a result victims suffer in silence and consequently develop mental health problems including depression and in some instances suicide. Moreover domestic violence has a negative impact on the family particularly children.
Siyanda Development aims to change this by raising awareness of Domestic Violence, highlighting issues faced by black women with the view of initiating conversations on how best to support BME women experiencing domestic violence.
For the next 12 months, Siyanda is running a project tailored to raise awareness on Domestic Violence.The project will entail the production of a film that will be used:
- as a tool for educating communities about domestic violence
- will also be used to initiate discussions at workshops and at schools about what domestic violence entails
- use it to sign post women to services where they can receive support as well as for survivors of domestic violence to know that they are not alone.
Siyanda will also take to the road, covering Greater Manchester, delivering workshops in high schools and community centres. Venues and times will be advertised by April 2017.