Beyond physical protection and security, shelters provide various emotional and psychosocial services, which are critical in supporting women to regain control over their lives. These emergency and short-term supports are central to the longer-term process of recovery and can contribute to assisting survivors remain free of violence and those at-risk avoid abuse altogether.
Shelters empower women and girls by:
Women’s empowerment is further supported when shelters maintain an environment which encourages women to make decisions for themselves, set and achieve their own personal goals, and ensures women’s participation and inputs are integrated into all aspects of the shelter’s operation. This includes employing approaches which demonstrate teamwork and balance of power between shelter staff and women seeking support (Women Against Violence Europe, 2004a).