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We cannot ignore the role that violence and abuse has played in the lives of many women experiencing homelessness.

Women in abusive relationships may be driven out of their homes, particularly if children are in danger.

In addition, the impact of childhood violence and abuse can erode a person’s resilience, making them more exposed to the risk of homelessness.

For these reasons, many women who are experiencing homelessness may be dealing with lasting trauma from violence and abuse, while at the same time experiencing trauma inflicted by homelessness itself.

Mothers often face children being taken into care or put up for adoption, a devastating loss that can be deeply traumatic for many women.

The vulnerability of homelessness can also leave women exposed to continued abuse and violence in all forms.

Trauma-informed services

There is a strong association between homelessness and experiences of violence and abuse.

This is why homelessness services need the knowledge and resources available to support women who may be dealing with recent or past trauma. Otherwise, they could risk inflicting further trauma on women who need support.

Anawim’s free, confidential helpline is available on 0800 019 8818 for anyone who identifies as a woman to speak with a specialist female caseworker about violence and/or abuse, mental health, finances, housing, families and relationships or anything else. Women can also access our live chat by clicking on the orange button in the corner of the screen.

Although our own services are specialised for women, homelessness, abuse and violence are issues that affect many people.

Shelter provide a national helpline on 0808 800 4444 for anyone who is experiencing homelessness.

Men who are experiencing domestic abuse can contact Respect’s free helpline on 0808 8010327.

LGBT+ and anti-violence charity Galop provide a national Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans+ domestic abuse helpline on 0800 999 5428. They can also provide support for those who have experienced hate crime and sexual violence.