Armidale becomes one of five regional communities to take part in the innovative Core and Cluster women’s refuge pilot, with Armidale Women’s Shelter (WSA) Vice-President Lisa Waters, Department of Communities & Justice Nicole Stace, WSA President Juliet Kaberry, WSA Manager Carolyn Burgess and Homes North CEO Maree McKenzie.
Friday, 6 August 2021
ARMIDALE has been selected as one of five sites in rural and regional NSW which will pilot an innovative new model for women’s refuges, with Member for the Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall yesterday announcing the State Government will invest $1.6 million to construct four self-contained units and a central hub to provide tailored support.
Mr Marshall said women and children escaping domestic violence would be supported with secure housing and specialist services through the new expanded state-of-the-art refuge.
“Domestic and family violence is a scourge in our community and this project will build on existing services to help women and children live free from fear,” Mr Marshall said.
“Armidale’s participation in the ‘Core and Cluster’ will involve families being housed in self-contained units around a central office offering specialist services and support.
“The innovative model provides people with personal space and security to heal with the assistance of specialist services.
“It’s also a wonderful reward and boost for the staff and volunteer committee who have toiled away for years, providing a wonderful service to our most vulnerable in the existing refuge.
“Plans for the development will be completed by the end of this year, with construction of the new refuge expected to commence in the first half of next year.
“When women make the brave decision to leave a violent home, we must ensure they have access to appropriate supports and resources to do so as safely as possible.
“I welcome this much needed boost to domestic violence services in Armidale and think long term it will be a support for women and children from across the entire region.”
Mr Marshall recognised the contribution the Women’s Shelter Armidale (WSA) and public housing provider Homes North have made to supporting women and children fleeing violence.
“I am very pleased the State Government is harnessing the experience of these important local organisations and partnering with them to deliver the Core and Cluster project,” he said.
“WSA has been operating in Armidale since 1977 and now services Guyra, Uralla and Walcha regions.
“In 1990 the Women’s Shelter moved into its current premises, where for the last 32 years it has provided safety and comfort to those experiencing this terrible and often dangerous situation.
“I am confident, by participating in this pilot, the capabilities of both WSA and Homes North will be enhanced so they can successfully continue this work for the future.”
For confidential support and referrals, contact 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732), the NSW Domestic Violence Line (1800 65 64 63) or the Men’s Referral Service (1300 766 491)