Background The Federation of Mother and Child Homes and Shelters is the national child welfare organisation with 30 member associations around Finland. The aim of the Federation is to support parenthood and families, to prevent violence in families and to safeguard the child´s right to safe development and childhood. The Online Shelter is a web service maintained by the Federation.
Description of the problem The Online Shelter was founded on 2001 and there are about 5000 visitors monthly. The Online Shelter is a web service for everyone concerned of domestic violence. The aim is that everyone has an equal possibility to get help and support for domestic violence. For example living in a small town can limit your possibility to get help. There is also lot of emotions, like shame and quilt, which are related to domestic violence and can affect your possibility to get help. When it comes to children and youth, internet is the place where they search for help. In these cases the online help can be the only possibility to find and get help.
Results The main aim of the Online Shelter is to offer preventative information about domestic violence and to strengthen people to search for help as early as possible. The Online Shelter provides different kind of help services and tools for surviving. The online chat is usually the first place where people tell about the violence in their lives. Safety is the most important thing in the discussions and it is important that people get the feeling that the chat raises their safety and encourages them to search help from the real time services.
Conclusions This presentation introduces the Online Shelters possibilities to help and give information about domestic violence. This presentation also gives some ideas how to work online, what are the main questions in the Online Shelters chats and what is the meaning of the online help.
- domestic violence
- online help
- web service
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