Women's Aid is a leading national organisation that has been working in Ireland to stop domestic violence against women and children since 1974.
We work to make women and children safe from domestic violence, offer support, provide hope to women affected by abuse and work for justice and social change. Over the course of almost 40 years the organisation has built up a huge body of experience and expertise on the issue, enabling us to best support women and children and share this knowledge with other agencies responding to women experiencing domestic violence.
Our Direct Services for women experiencing domestic violence underpin and inform all of our work to end domestic violence.
Our Direct Services for Women
The Women's Aid National Freephone Helpline (1800 341 900) operates from 10am to 10pm, every day of the year (except Christmas day), and provides support and information to callers experiencing abuse from intimate partners.
The Women's Aid Helpline is the only free, national, domestic violence helpline with specialised trained staff, fully accredited by The Helplines Association and with a Telephone Interpretation Service facility covering 170 languages for callers needing interpreting services.
Women's Aid also offers a Dublin-based One to One Support Service. Our Support Services Team provide more in-depth one to one information and support, Monday to Friday, in six locations throughout Dublin and its surrounding areas including:
- Dublin City Centre - North and South sides
- Dun Laoghaire
Other meeting points for Support Meetings include hospitals, or other locations chosen by women for safety reasons. Referrals to our Support Services come via the National Freephone Helpline, as well as from a range of other services such as An Garda Síochána, GPs, social workers and hospital staff.
The Support Services Team also offer a Court Accompaniment Service, which provides advocacy and support specific to the particular needs of women seeking legal redress regarding violence by a current or former husband or partner.
Women's Aid operates the Dolphin House Support and Referral Service, in partnership with the Dublin 12 Domestic Violence Service and Inchicore Outreach Centre in the Dublin District Family Law Court in Dolphin House.
Women's Aid also refers women to local domestic violence refuges and support services around the country.
Working for Justice and Social Change
In addition to our Direct Services, Women's Aid acts for justice and social change by engaging in policy, representation and communications and campaigns activity at a national level. Women's Aid also provides extensive information and statistics on domestic violence in print and online.
We also provide specialised training and organisational support on reponding to domestic violence and we are the Specialist Support Agency on Violence against Women to the Local and Community Development Programme and Family Resources Centres throughout the country.
It is our sincere hope that by increasing understanding and awareness of domestic violence we will improve societal responses to, and increase protection for, women and children affected by abuse.
Women's Aid operates from and are underpinned by the following principles:
- Complete confidentiality.1
- Maximising women's safety at all times.
- Understanding the trauma of violence and supporting women's increasing autonomy while recognising the woman as expert in her own situation.
- Being informed and knowledgeable about the rights, entitlements and options for women and ensuring referral is appropriate and responsible.
- Advocating for women's rights.
- Addressing additional barriers and discriminations that women experience.
- Being committed to ensuring justice for the victim and accountability and sanctions against violent men.
- Recognising the best form of child protection in domestic violence situations is woman protection.
- Supporting women to move from crisis to safety and independence.
- Ongoing commitment to action for political and institutional change.
- Encompassing key feminist principles within the philosophy and ethos of the organisation.
Women's Aid is only too aware of the reality of violence against women. There is a constant demand for all our services. We hope that you will help Women's Aid continue to support women and their children who are being abused as well as join with us in our aim to create a society which does not accept violence against women.
1 Women's Aid has a policy in line with the Children First Guidelines which callers and clients are made aware of if disclosing child abuse.