Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Waikato Women’s Refuge working collaboratively

Waikato Women’s Refuge working collaboratively to help high-risk whānau

Waikato Women’s Refuge is part of a pilot programme aimed at enabling multi-agency collaboration to make a real difference in the lives of whānau experiencing family violence.

The Integrated Safety Response framework sees government and non-government agencies working together to support victims of family violence – Police, CYF, Corrections, Health, specialist family violence groups and kaupapa Maori services.

Waikato is the second pilot site for the programme and launched in October last year. The first pilot site, Christchurch, launched in July 2016. Both sites have government support in the form of $1.4 million in funding from the Justice Sector Fund.

Last week the government also announced $1.1 million of funding to provide short-term housing for perpetrators of family violence in Hamilton and Christchurch to ensure victims are kept safe and are able to stay in their own homes.

As part of the Integrated Safety Response framework, Waikato Women’s Refuge oversees a small group of Independent Victim Specialists whose role is to be a voice for victims of family violence and advocate for their best interests to the other agencies in the programme.

Rolina Karapu, Waikato Women’s Refuge’s Crisis and Community Service Manager, supports and manages the network of victim specialists and says they are critical to helping the Integrated Safety Response framework achieve its purpose.

“Too often we hear from our families and whānau the bad experiences they have had with statutory agencies in the past; they feel like the system has let them down.

“The importance of our role is that we can come in and help break down those barriers between whānau and statutory agencies by advocating explicitly for the needs of whānau.”

Ms Karapu says the most important aspect of their job is that they validate the experiences of victims.

“We listen to their story and we listen to what their needs are, and we follow through on addressing those needs. We do what we say we will, and in doing that we build trust with whānau and victims of family violence.”

She says the front-line nature of their work gives them valuable knowledge to put on the table so that everyone involved can plan an effective response to a violent whānau situation.

There are also independent victim specialists in Thames, Tokoroa and Waitomo. The Integrated Safety Response framework works right across the wider Waikato region and is overseen by the Ministerial Group on Family Violence and Sexual Violence.

In March, Justice Minister Amy Adams said the ISR pilot had helped over 24,000 people through the development of more than 8,000 family safety plans between July 2016 and February 2017; 776 cases per month in Christchurch and 951 per month in Waikato. She said the pilot programme was making a difference and had prevented cases where serious harm or death could have occurred, due to information sharing and inter-agency collaboration.

The ISR is expected to replace existing models of inter-agency family violence response.

About Waikato Women’s Refuge – Te Whakaruruhau

Waikato Women’s Refuge – Te Whakaruruhau was established in 1986 by a group of local Māori women. It’s grown from a one-bedroom flat into six safe houses across Hamilton City and provides 24/7 crisis services as well as working with families to create long-term change in domestic violence. The Waikato Women’s Refuge takes an integrated approach to family violence working with a variety of agencies, but it is not connected with the national women’s refuge collective.

Waikato Women’s Refuge helps about 4000 Waikato women a year escape violent and abusive relationships.

Additional sources

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Yesterday’s Big Parliamentary Air Kiss To China

In order to obtain support from the two major parties, Act Party deputy leader Brooke Van Velden twice had to soften the language of her parliamentary motion yesterday condemning China’s persecution of the Uighurs. The key word “genocide” was deleted. Evidently, the kind of resolution passed by a conservative government in the UK proved to be far too tough for a centre-left Labour government and a centre-right National opposition to countenance. Yesterday, the two major parties were united in their fear of retribution from China... More>>


Government: Fair Pay Agreements To Improve Pay And Conditions For Essential Workers

The Government is delivering on its pre-election commitment to implement Fair Pay Agreements which will improve wages and conditions, as well as help support our economic recovery, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Wood announced today. More>>


Public Services: Government Sets Pay And Workforce Expectations For The Public Sector

The Government’s Workforce Policy Statement issued today sets out its expectations for pay and employment relations in the Public Sector, the Minister of Finance and Minister for the Public Service say. “New Zealand has had an exceptionally successful ... More>>


Government: Budget 2021 Reprioritises Nearly $1 Billion

Hon Grant Robertson Deputy Prime Minister Minister of Finance The Government’s strong pandemic response and the better than expected economic recovery means not all the money allocated in the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund has been spent, ... More>>


PM: Statement On The Speaker And Annual Review Debate

“The serious issue of alleged sexual assault and harassment at Parliament was poorly managed and inappropriately politicised last night. The tone of the debate did not reflect well on Parliament as a whole,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. ... More>>

Parliament: Mallard Fails To Give Taxpayers A Straight Answer

Trevor Mallard has confirmed he is unfit to be Parliament’s Speaker by failing to answer several important questions relating to the false rape accusation saga that cost taxpayers more than $330,000, Shadow Leader of the House Chris Bishop says. ... More>>

Local Government: Independent Review To Explore Future

Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta says an independent review of local government will explore how councils can maintain and improve the wellbeing of New Zealanders in the communities they serve long into the future. More>>


PM Ardern And PM Morrison: Commencement Of Two-Way Quarantine-Free Travel Between Australia And New Zealand

Joint Statement by Prime Ministers Scott Morrison and Jacinda Ardern Commencement of two-way quarantine-free travel between Australia and New Zealand Today, Australia and New Zealand have fulfilled their commitment to establish two-way quarantine free ... More>>




InfoPages News Channels