Coming into a refuge can be daunting- especially if it is your first time. To put you at ease and answer some of the questions you may have, we have put together the following FAQs.

If you have other questions or if there is anything you are unsure of, you can email us at [email protected] or call 0151 643 9766 (option 2)

You can also take a look at our photo gallery to get a feel for the place.

Q- What if I need Refuge out of hours?

If you need advice or help out of hours, you can contact out 24-hour domestic abuse helpline on 0151 643 9766

Q- What will happen when I arrive?

When you first arrive, we will chat have a chat about what's been happening, talk you through everything you need to know about being in refuge and we can start getting to know each other. Then you will be shown around the building and to your room. You will be assigned your own project worker who can talk through your options and give specialist trauma support once you settle in. If you have children, they will be introduced to the Family Link team when they feel ready, who will help them settle in, show them around play facilities and our new sensory room. When the time is right they will work with the children around overcoming trauma and how they are feeling too. You will find all of our staff friendly and understanding.

Q- What happens if I have no clothes or posessions with me?

We understand that many women have to leave their home in a hurry with little or no possessions. We have clothing, food and other essential items you may need while you settle in. If you don't have access to money, we can help you to apply for any benefits you are entitled to claim.

Q- How long will I stay in refuge?

Your length of stay is really dependent on your circumstances. Some women only stay a couple of nights or until they can return safely to their own home. Others apply for housing and are with us for a number of months depending on the current housing situation.

Q- I don't want to leave my pet- what should I do?

Although we can't bring pets into the refuge, we will try to find a pet foster home who will take care of them while you’re here. We know how much people care about their pets and that leaving them behind isn't an option for some. We will work with Dogs Trust and Endeavour who can find suitable foster placements for all sorts of animals. These organisations can send you pictures and updates so that you know they are safe and well while you are here. We fully understand that pets are family too so we'll do our best to help keep them safe as well.

Q- I am thinking about leaving my partner but I have no money of my own- how will I manage?

There are various benefits which you may be entitled to and some can be paid even if you are working. We will help you apply for any benefits that you are entitled to and for housing if that is what you need, we can also put you in contact with legal services.

Q- What happens if the Refuge is full but I want to leave?

If the refuge is full, we will try to find you alternative accommodation in another refuge or put you in touch with Housing Options. We work intensively with Housing options. They have an excellent understanding of domestic abuse and will work with you to keep you safe. You can still call our helpline for support and advice- even if you are not staying with us.

Q- I don't need refuge but I need someone to talk to- will you still help?

We find that many women do not want to leave their partners but find it hard to cope, this is why we offer our 24-hour helpline for anyone who wants advice or a listening ear. We can also put you in touch with other local organisations that can help.

Q- I want to stay in my own home. What can I do to protect myself?

There are lots of things that local organisations can do to help keep you safe in your own home. These include extra security at home, court orders and safety planning and much more. We will discuss your individual circumstances to see what will work for you. We work closely with other services to give you ‘wrap around’ support.

Q- Can I come & see the refuge before deciding if I want to come in?

Obviously, we shield our location as much as possible, but if it's a deciding factor in making you safe, we will do our best to accommodate requests. Call us on 0151 643 9766 (option 2) if you'd like to talk it through.

Q- I have no money- how do I get there?

If you have no way to get to us, call 0151 643 9766 and we will arrange transport for you.

Q- What about child contact?

You can continue with child contact arrangements, but we will help you to manage them safely. If for instance, your child is collected for contact, this can be arranged in a public place to protect your location. You can also consider doing this through a third party if you are worried for your safety.