10.03.2020: The first open-housing center for women-victims of domestic violence opened in the Western Balkans

The National Network to End Violence against Women and Domestic Violence today opened the doors of the open-housing center for women victims of violence. At the beginning of this month, the Network, funded by the City of Skopje, started piloting a service which is the first of its type in the Western Balkans. The main goal of the project is rehabilitation and reintegration of women-victims of domestic violence who have left the violent environment and their full strengthening for an independent life. Though a number of planned activities and in a situation when existential needs are met, the users of this service and their children will be prepared to more easily face the new challenges outside the violent environment and without a risk of homelessness.

More specifically, the service provides open or transit housing from the moment victims leave the violent environment until they are fully integrated into the social life. Moreover, full psychological support and counseling will be provided, as well as assistance in getting employment through the development of work skills and education.

This housing model will be implemented with the direct support of a social worker through provision of social services and counseling in order for victims to fully exercise their social rights. She will also work on referring victims to other specialized services for women-victims of violence and providing assistance in getting access to general services from the area of social, health and child protection. Individual program for reintegration and rehabilitation of the victims living in the house is also envisaged, which will be implemented following an individual approach to each women-victim. With this type of assistance, victims will be able to more easily overcome the traumas from the violence, get prepared for an independent life and avoid the risk of returning to the violent environment or getting into another violent relationship.

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