Crisis centers, shelters for women victims of violence...

Crisis centers

The content of the activities of crisis centers is the provision of psychological, legal, pedagogical, social and other types of assistance to victims of violence, often in crisis and dangerous for physical and mental health. In addition, the client can get in-person or on the phone detailed information about the place and mode of work of the necessary specialists and other necessary data.

The main form of work of the crisis center is full-time counseling. Victims have the opportunity to communicate directly with specialists: psychologists, doctors, teachers, lawyers, etc. In a number of crisis centers, group classes are held, including self-help groups.

If the phone number of the trust telephone operating directly in the crisis center is not known to the victim of domestic violence, then contacting the police or the citywide hotline, you can find out the phone number of the nearest shelter or crisis counselor.


Calls are received on the "trust phone", as a rule, highly qualified specialists who already at the first stage can determine the state of the victim of violence, provide her with primary support, adequately assess the situation in order to plan a further work plan (the subscriber may be in a state of alcoholic or narcotic intoxication, or be mentally unhealthy, which involves referral to an appropriate medical institution), or convince the victim to come for help in a crisis center.

In world practice, a form of aid, such as the "shelters" - a type of large centers with special shelter for victims of domestic violence (in most cases - for women and/or children). For example, in the USA, Germany, Holland, the activity of "shelters" - one of the independent specialized programs of assistance to victims of violence. As a rule, these are far from the city center small cozy buildings, the address of which is kept secret. The regime here is free, some women even continue to work during their stay in the "shelter". Everything is built on the principles of self-service; women are provided with free food and medical assistance. Average occupancy of shelters - 30-50 people, and the duration of stay in them is from two to five weeks. One of the main tasks of the staff of victim services is psychological rehabilitation and legal assistance; they explain in detail the rights of women and children, and in cases of unavoidable divorce they provide practical, including legal, assistance.

Services provided in an environment of trust and understanding of the risk that the victim incurs, telling the truth, necessarily presuppose arranging a living space, as well as for reception and counseling, giving confidence that here they take the problem seriously. Shelters equipped with posters, stands, there are in them and libraries, playrooms for children. The nanny will look after the children if the woman needs time to do housework, visit a specialist or a training group.

Shelters for women victims of violence and their children

If a woman agrees to leave the house and settle in an orphanage that may be located in a crisis center or elsewhere, it is important to ensure that she is completely safe and minimize the possibility of information leakage, since the rapist often does everything to find her victim. Therefore, the woman and her children are first taken to the police, and then they are secretly transported to the shelter.

Shelter - is a temporary shelter where a woman can hide from her husband's harassment, get effective first aid and undergo further treatment. She is provided with financial support, counseling services, psychological support. In an environment of attention, understanding and care, she can recover, reconsider her life and with the help of a specialist make a decision about her future.

One of the most widely used methods of rehabilitation programs in the shelters is the group therapy, which is held simultaneously with the woman herself and her children. This work, aimed, on the one hand, to overcome the feelings of loneliness and alienation of the victim, and on the other - to strengthen the relationship between mother and children, allows for a natural supportive relationship. The program of group therapy is developed for everyone individually taking into account a specific family situation. Sessions are held twice a week for an hour: 45 minutes is a discussion (it can be educational programs for adults, discussion of various patterns of interaction between parents and children, etc.), and 15 minutes are reserved for gaming activities offered by children themselves. There is also a practice of crisis intervention in the rooms of the "ambulance" at hospitals, because it is here that the victims first turn. While the doctor provides first aid, the social worker determines the cause of the incident, explains the possible consequences and offers further assistance in changing the situation. If necessary (if the woman decides to sue), the police are called to the hospital.

To study (diagnose) the situation, a special protocol has been developed to help social workers practicing in hospitals (although it can be used by any other specialist). The protocol contains graphs that allow you to record remarks and observations of the therapist, nurse and social worker. Thanks to him, it is possible to provide the most adequate medical care. In addition, the protocol documentally (in it there are photographs) a case of violence and can be used if the victim later decides to go to court. The protocol lists the reference services and shelters where the woman can turn if necessary.

The activities of a social worker in hospitals are unquestionably significant, and yet difficulties often arise due to the "secondary" his position in relation to the medical staff. Therefore, it is important to determine the functions and status of each of the employees and to approve them by an appropriate resolution. Since the problem of family violence and neglect involves the intersection of the fields of activity of specialists in various professions (the social worker in itself does not have a clearly defined status with regard to the victim, not sufficient to ensure the protection of the victim of violence, nor all the resources needed to provide assistance) It is natural that the multi-disciplinary approach has become one of the main and most frequently used in the intervention and in dealing with the case in this situation.

Usually a multidisciplinary (interprofessional) team consists of a therapist, a nurse, a social worker, a counseling psychiatrist, a psychologist, a lawyer, a police officer and a coordinator (manager). It is the responsibility of the coordinator to ensure the coordinated work of all team members, collective discussion of the situation in the family, the reliability of the information available, a collective assessment of available resources, as well as the definition of the case management strategy and the functional responsibilities of each specialist involved. The last aspect of the team's activity is one of the most serious problems, since it is very difficult to draw a dividing line between overlapping spheres of activity.

This is how the duties of specialists are distributed.


a) ensuring a confidential relationship between the doctor and the patient;

b) assessment of the degree of need for medical treatment for the victim and/or abuser;

c) providing the best possible treatment;

d) responsibility for the health of the patient. Consultant:

a) counseling on patient care;

b) ensuring a confidential relationship between the doctor and the patient;

c) assessing the extent to which medical treatment is necessary for the victim and/or the perpetrator;

d) ensuring the selection of the best possible treatment;

e) Supervision and counseling of junior medical personnel, doctors and other specialists.


a) assessment of the degree of need for medical care;

b) planning and providing medical care;

c) training patient independence in controlling the schedule and dose of medication.


a) psychological diagnosis, definition and wording of the client's problem;

b) choice, planning and implementation of the psychological impact strategy;

c) educational work among members of the team on theoretical and practical psychology;

d) conducting research work.

A lawyer or a policeman (militiaman):

a) advising the group on legal issues or about the crime committed;

b) help in collecting information and clues;

c) advising on the form of charging, determining the degree of responsibility and punishment.

Social worker:

a) work with the case (the choice of techniques aimed at building the skills of proper interaction, providing support and conducting counseling);

b) coordination of activities and counseling of social, departmental and medical services;

c) performing, if necessary, the functions of the multidisciplinary team coordinator.

Such an interprofessional team can be formed on the basis of both a medical institution and a social service.

Regardless of the type of social institution and the technology used to deal with the case in direct correctional and rehabilitation work with the client (family), the most common is the psychosocial approach. This approach allows to increase the efficiency of work, as it involves not only the use of available social resources, but also the activation of the client's personal resources (family) and the application of techniques of psychological influence on the aggressor, the victim and the family as a whole. Correctional and rehabilitation activities can be carried out in various forms: individual counseling, working with a dyad (conjugal or child-parent), with the whole family, as well as with certain groups (rapists, victims and their parents).

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