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Shine Victim Advocates
“I felt like I was aware of options, rather than feeling trapped. She helped me to see it’s my right to be safe and I didn’t deserve this.” – Shine client
Our Shine Advocates work with victims to help them and their children become safe and stay safe. Most of these clients want to stay in their own home, and we help many of them do just that. We also help victims be safe wherever they are and wherever they go, whether they go to refuge, relocate or stay in their own home.
Since 1995, Auckland police and Auckland hospitals have referred victims of domestic abuse to our victim advocacy service. Most of these victims are women, but some are men - all victims referred receive the same service. Most have young children.
Our Advocates prioritise victims in the greatest danger of being seriously injured or killed. Advocates work closely with Police, Child Youth and Family, Courts (especially the Victim Advisers), family lawyers, and other social service agencies so that all agencies and professionals are supporting victims and their children to be safe.
In Auckland, Police and Hospitals make urgent referrals to Shine via a confidential phone line which operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Advocates respond as quickly as possible, meeting with clients in their own homes, at the hospital, local Police stations, or other safe venue.
After hours, our volunteer Advocates provide this service. These volunteers receive extensive classroom and field training, as well as ongoing clinical and peer supervision. Find out more about volunteering as a Shine After Hours Callout Advocate.
Advocates help victims to understand their level of risk and help create a safety plan for them and their children. This may include applying for a Protection Order, going into a refuge, or whatever will work best in that person’s circumstances to keep him/her safe.
Shine has Advocates based at two Police Stations with Auckland Central and North Shore Police Family Violence Teams, at several CYF offices, and at Auckland Hospital.
Advocates provide extended, intensive support for clients at high risk of serious harm. For some of the most high-risk clients, Shine provides home security upgrading so victims can remain safely in their own home. Our Advocates routinely attend meetings with Police, Child, Youth & Family (CYF), Community Probation, and other agencies to share information about and collaborate on high risk cases, with the shared goal of victim safety and offender accountability. This model has been used in the United Kingdom and recommended frequently in NZ child death reviews as a way of reducing risk of further harm to adults and children.
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