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Supporting women and children in distress at SPAVO shelters

The quarantine restriction due to Covid-19 has increased the frequency, intensity and the danger of violence against women and children. In light of this situation, Andrey & Julia Dashin’s Foundation are supporting the Association for the Prevention and Handling of Violence in the Family (SPAVO) by covering expenses for supermarket food vouchers.

SPAVO Director, Dr. Antri Andronikou noted:

“Women who experience domestic violence during this period of time are isolated in their homes with their perpetrator. They are further isolated from their social lives, working zones and social support – elements that intensify the authority of the perpetrator. It leads to a greater control of the women’s lives and aggravating the severity of violence. At the same time, children are victimized and dangerously exposed at episodes of domestic violence since they remain isolated at home with the abusive parent or mother’s partner, with their physical and psychological health at risk.”

Julia Dashina commented:

“The calls and reports about the domestic violence keep rising dramatically with the rate increasing to almost double, compared to the previous months. In March and April, SPAVO hosted 18 women and 26 childers at their shelter. Abuse and mistreatment in families can happen to anyone of any race, age, sexual orientation, or religion. That is why it’s our honour to be able to provide direct support to the women and children experiencing domestic violence.”

In March alone, SPAVO Helpline #1440 reached 2075 calls and handled 230 reports of domestic violence cases. In April the Helpline received 2902 calls, handled 230 reports. In addition, in March and April 2020, handled 25 requests for individual counseling appointments.

SPAVO, founded in 1990, provides protective and treatment services for both victims and perpetrators of domestic violence through the establishment of a national helpline (1440), the organisation of educational seminars as well as the provision of safe accommodation and psychological support to protect and guide people involved in violent situations. In addition, SPAVO identifies shortcomings and weaknesses in Cypriot legislation and submits their suggestions for correctional measures in order to develop a wider policy against domestic violence and safeguard its victims.