A new postcard campaign in North Dublin aims to give women suffering from domestic abuse the information they need to get help.
Sonas Housing Association is today launching its service, Viva Reach-Out.
They provide supported housing, refuge and outreach for people affected by domestic violence.
Actress Aisling O'Neill, who plays Carol in Fair City, herself a victim of domestic violence, launched the service.
Domestic violence is estimated to affect one in five women in this country, according to Sonas, who said it is widely accepted that this under-represents the true extent of the problem.
“Many situations of domestic violence may look perfectly fine from an outsider’s perspective. A violent partner can seem loving and devoted, but behind closed doors there may be horrendous abuse,” said Sharon Cosgrove, CEO of Sonas Housing.
According to the HSE, a woman experiences an average of 35 incidents of abuse before she seeks help.
“Domestic violence is often a hidden issue because the woman may not be safe enough or feel strong enough to tell someone,” said Cosgrove.
“You often hear ‘if it is so bad why doesn’t she just leave’ but this does not take into account the multiple barriers women face and the potentially lethal implications of disclosure to her and her family.”
Sonas is contactable on sonashousing.ie, or the Viva Reach Service can be contacted at 087 6294734 or 01 8662012.