Support for victims of domestic abuse across southwest London has been given a boost this White Ribbon Day, thanks to a £483,000 government grant.

White Ribbon Day was on November 25, a day designated by the United Nations as International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

Richmond and Wandsworth councils supported by Kingston and Merton have successfully bid for funding from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government to continue the provision of an outreach service to support victims of domestic abuse who have multiple, complex needs that was due to close this December.

The service, run by Refuge which currently supports victims in both Wandsworth and Richmond will now be extended until 2020 and expanded to cover Kingston and Merton.

SPEAR is a charity working with homeless people in South West London.

They offer services to street homeless and vulnerable people, to enable them to find secure accommodation.

The funding will allow the reinstatement of SPEAR’s successful specialist service supporting homeless women experiencing domestic abuse that ceased in April this year.

Refuge have worked in Richmond since 2011 providing high quality free, confidential, and independent support to people experiencing domestic abuse.

Merton Council’s Cabinet Member for Community Safety, Engagement and Equalities Councillor Edith Macauley said: “Joining up with Richmond, Kingston and Wandsworth has allowed us to secure funding and continue the provision of a much needed service.

"Far too many people suffer in silence because of domestic abuse and we are determined to put the needs of our residents first by committing ourselves to protecting the most vulnerable members of our society.”

This funding will help Refuge further develop the outreach service working closely with a variety of current service providers including SPEAR, to support victims of domestic abuse across four boroughs.

The service will provide flexible, individually tailored outreach support for victims living in their own home and will work with SPEAR and other housing providers to support women with complex needs who are unable to access mainstream accommodation services because of their high support needs.