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Domestic abuse support groups share £664,000 lottery cash

© The National Lottery Community Fund/PA WireLibby McPherson (left) who was supported by the No Feart Community Interest Company, and Lynn Smillie, Founder and Managing Company Director
Libby McPherson (left) who was supported by the No Feart Community Interest Company, and Lynn Smillie, Founder and Managing Company Director

Organisations supporting women and children affected by domestic abuse are sharing £664,000 of funding.

Five support organisations in Glasgow, Perth, Aberdeen, East Dunbartonshire and the Scottish Borders will receive the National Lottery Community Fund cash.

No Feart Community Interest Company in Glasgow will use its £92,193 cash injection to help women recognise the signs of a controlling and abusive relationship while improving their skills and self-esteem to enable them to move forward.

The project will benefit around 100 women like Libby McPherson, 21, from Glasgow, who found the courage to escape an abusive, controlling relationship with an older man who tried to cut her off from family and friends.

Describing the impact the support of No Feart had on her, she said: “He always had a way of explaining himself that made him out to be the victim in every situation.

“It’s so weird to look back and think what I listened to and believed, supporting the way he showed himself to the world.

“No Feart totally opened my eyes to what behaviours aren’t healthy and that in relationships, you should always, always be treated with respect.”

Lynn Smillie, founder of No Feart, said: “We cannot thank the National Lottery Community Fund enough.

“In the last three years our previous funding has allowed us to become a key organisation in Glasgow, offering long-term recovery outcomes to people who take part in our educational courses.

“These courses have empowered people with knowledge about abusive tactics and the abuser’s environment which have shaped their beliefs and how society enforces them.”

In Aberdeen, Pathways Services Limited will use its £86,415 share to continue running a counselling service for women who have endured domestic abuse, both in the city and across rural Aberdeenshire.

Its manager Malcolm Pritchard said: “This money will make a huge difference to women who have experienced abuse and will provide a flexible approach including either telephone or face to face counselling, which means that our service is accessible to women no matter how remote their location.

“This support from the National Lottery Community Fund is absolutely crucial and we welcome their ongoing support.”

Perthshire Women’s Aid receives £245,370 to develop an existing project which provides one to one advice and support to women in rural communities across Perth and Kinross who have experienced domestic abuse.

The project helps women in immediate crisis situations as well as providing longer term support.

East Dunbartonshire Women’s Aid is receiving £150,000 to run a two-year project in Milngavie and Bearsden supporting survivors of domestic abuse.

Meanwhile, Border Women’s Aid will use its £90,226 award to expand support in the community from four-weeks of post-refuge support to a full year, and will also allow some support at weekends.

The five projects tackling domestic abuse are among 49 groups sharing £5,602,381 from the National Lottery Community Fund which was announced on Thursday.

National Lottery Community Fund Scotland director Neil Ritch said: “It’s thanks to the generosity of National Lottery players that we are today announcing over £5 million to 49 life-changing projects across Scotland.

“Some of this funding will make a real difference to the lives of thousands of women and children across the country, from Aberdeenshire to the Scottish Borders, by providing them with vital support at a time when they need it the most.”