Leaving an abusive relationship can sometimes seem impossible. When you’re tied to each other financially and emotionally, it can be hard to make that first step. That’s exactly how Annie felt this time last year.
When Annie reached out to us, she felt trapped. She had been with her ex-partner for over a decade, and things seems great at first. As the years passed however, his violent tendencies gradually came to light leaving Annie feeling vulnerable and unhappy.
“Things became too much and I finally ended the relationship. I had to find somewhere to live with no savings, belongings or furniture. My family helped me out as much as they could, but I was really struggling financially.”
Annie eventually managed to find a rented property through a tenancy advance scheme which allowed her to finally turn the first page in her new chapter. As she tried to scrape enough money together to buy furniture for her new home, she was hit by another bombshell when her credit card statement came through the post.
“I discovered a very large amount of debt in my name that had been taken out by my ex-partner. So on top of moving home I had this huge debt hanging over my head. I quickly fell behind on my rent and missed a month and then another. It was the most difficult time of my life.”
Annie loved her job at The Department for Work and Pensions and had always prided herself on her successful career. As part of a team that helps others in need, she struggled with the idea of asking for help herself. Eventually her colleague persuaded her to give the Charity a call and reminded her that she had a lifelong community watching out for her.
“I have always been so independent and asking for help was really difficult for me. I’m so glad I did. The Charity helped me clear my rent arrears which allowed me to stay in my new home.”
When we got back in touch with Annie she was in a much happier place. Now thriving in her personal life and at work, she wants to help other civil servants break free from domestic abuse. She hopes that sharing her story will remind other victims across the Civil Service that they matter; and they matter to us.
“I’m doing much better now; and thanks to you, I made it through a really tough time. The Charity has restored my faith in people. Thank you for everything, you do a fantastic job.”
“I'm so proud of every single one of my colleagues, working long hours and getting through such difficult days… We are not the NHS (who by the way, are absolute heroes) but we are key workers and we continue to work hard to support each other. I have never known anything like the friendship I’ve found at the Civil Service. These are uncertain times so let's just be kind to each other and reach out to anyone who needs our help.”