UnitingSA, along with nine other UnitingCare Network consortium organisations across Australia, will lead a pilot program providing financial assistance and wrap-around support to assist people to escape family violence.

UnitingSA, part of the UnitingCare Network, will deliver the Escaping Violence Payment program along with Uniting Vic.Tas (Vic and Tas), Wesley Mission (NSW and ACT), UnitingCare (QLD), Uniting WA, Uniting Communities, Uniting Wesley Bowden (SA), Uniting Country SA, Somerville (NT) and UnitingCare Australia.

The program is being funded by the Commonwealth Government as part of its $1.1 billion commitment in the 2021-22 Federal Budget to help end violence against women and children.

The Escaping Violence Payment program will provide assistance up to $5000 for individuals, including financial assistance up to $1500 along with goods, services, and wrap-around support for anyone wanting to leave a violent partner.

Payments can also be used to help find safe accommodation and connect with support services and any other assistance they may need to get back on their feet.

Financial insecurity is one of the main barriers for women that stops them leaving a violent partner and in some cases is a factor which contributes to why some return to an abusive partner.

The community services organisations will be able to arrange referrals or connections with other appropriate services so people can get the additional help to establish a home free from violence.

The program starts on 19 October and is expected to support up to 24,000 people across Australia over the next two years.