Churches across north and mid Wales to raise money for domestic abuse charity
Churches in mid and north Wales are to raise funds for a charity that provides support to people who have experienced domestic abuse.
The North Wales Domestic Abuse Safety Unit, known as DASU, will be the recipient of the 2021 Diocesan Offering which was launched at the annual conference of St Asaph Diocese on Saturday 10 October.
Held via ZOOM, more than 300 conference delegates watched a film explaining the work of DASU by two members of staff, Naomi Dobson and Amy Hanks. In it Naomi explained how important the money would be at this time.
She said: “With Covid happening and all the restrictions, we have had over 50% increase in the number of people contacting us.
“We have had some short-term funding to enable us to have enough capacity to support people, so the money that the church will raise for us will go into direct client work.
“People are leaving with absolutely nothing, just the clothes on their back.
“Some people don’t have a wallet or anything to their name. Being able to give someone coming into refuge a starter pack with pyjamas, with socks, with really basis stuff which we take for granted, even fresh bread and milk, is so important.
“Little things like that makes a big difference.”
The St Asaph Conference was told that one-in-four women and one-in-seven men experience domestic abuse in their lifetime. DASU has offices in Wrexham, Flintshire, Denbighshire and Conwy. An all Wales helpline, “Life Fear Free” is available 24/7 on 0808 80 10 800.
Every year the congregations in the churches which make up the Diocese of St Asaph raise money to support a local charity. The charity is selected by members of the Diocesan Conference and the money raised is donated at the annual conference each October.
In 2020, churches across the diocese of St Asaph raised £6,000 for north Wales based Haven of Light, which works to tackle modern slavery.
Previous recipients of the diocesan offering include Housing Justice Cymru which set up temporary night shelters in church buildings, the Alzheimer’s Society, Blind Veterans and the Wales Air Ambulance.
Amy added: “It’s life-saving. That sounds very dramatic but it’s true. People die every week in England and Wales at the hands of their partner or ex-partner.
“Churches will play a massive part in the fight against domestic abuse.
“We talk a lot about a window of opportunity and that maybe really small for someone but if you can be that for someone, you could save a life.”
The St Asaph Diocesan Offering Officer, Ros Crawford told conference members: “Thank you for all the fund raising you’ve managed to carry out in difficult circumstances this year. Charities like DASU and the people they help need all the assistance we can provide at this time. I urge you to find creative, Covid-safe ways to raise as much money as you can to support the vital work of DASU.”
The Diocese of St Asaph is one of the six dioceses of the Church in Wales, an independent Province of the worldwide Anglican Communion. St Asaph looks after 214 churches and 51 Church Schools.
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