Northamptonshire County Council will fund services for abuse victims

Last week the Northamptonshire Sunflower Centre feared closure but the service is now being backed by the county council.
Last week the Northamptonshire Sunflower Centre feared closure but the service is now being backed by the county council.

Leaders at Northamptonshire County Council will continue to pledge funding to six vital services that support victims of sexual and domestic abuse.

Staff at the Northamptonshire Sunflower Centre - who help domestic abuse victims in seven boroughs countywide - will now receive funding from Northamptonshire County Council after fearing last week that their service, among five others in the county, might close.

However, at this point in time, the only confirmed funding for the service is from the police commissioner Stephen Mold, and Northamptonshire County Council, which still might not be enough.

The Sunflower Centre is funded by the PCC, NCC, Clinical Commissioning Group and all seven district and borough councils.

A Northamptonshire County Council spokeswoman said: “It has been agreed that the county council will continue its current level of funding for the Sunflower Centre into 2018/19. This will be reviewed in 2018/19 as part of our ongoing budget process.”

Northamptonshire County Council will also help to fund five other organisations countywide - which include Northamptonshire Domestic Abuse Service, Northamptonshire Rape Crisis, Serenity SARC and VOICE - who last week all raised concerns over risks to their services from April 2018 and redundancies.

Between 2016 and 2017, The Northamptonshire Sunflower Centre received 2,168 referrals for support and after the initial signposting stage, 1794 were placed onto their duty system and 721 victims accepted Independent Domestic Violence Adviser support.