A charity supporting disabled people has received over £100,000 to expand its support services for disabled and Deaf victims of violence.

The £103,700 grant was given to Stay Safe East, based in Waltham Forest, by the City of London Corporation’s charitable funder, City Bridge Trust, the capital’s biggest independent grant giver.

Stay Safe East (SSE) is boosting its support for Deaf and disabled people after recording an increase in the number of cases involving child protection, domestic violence or women with high support needs. In the past year the charity has had to turn down numerous domestic violence referrals because of limited capacity.

The project currently offers support across Waltham Forest and Newham. The funding will enable SSE to expand its services in both boroughs, working intensively with more disabled victims with complex support needs and people who need long-term support. New staff will also allow the charity to take on more volunteers.

The charity works for change at a London and national level to address inequalities. According to the World Health Organisation* disabled people are more likely to experience violence or abuse at some point in their lives than other population groups. Disabled children are 3.7 times more likely to be victims of violence against their non-disabled peers, and adults are 1.5 times more likely.

Alison Gowman, Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s City Bridge Trust Committee, said:

“Stay Safe East has proven to be very effective in supporting citybridgetrust. It’s a fantastic charity really pushing for change not just locally but across the whole UK.

“There is a clear need for the organisation to expand its services to meet increasing demand.  It is vital they have the resources necessary to provide the best support to those most in need and this grant will help achieve this goal.

“City Bridge Trust is committed to tackling disadvantage across the capital and making London a fairer and better place to live”

Ruth Bashall, Director of Stay Safe East, said:

“Our work with disabled victims and survivors of domestic violence, hate crime and other forms of abuse has grown in the past three years and our clients face ever more complex barriers to safety and to getting justice.  We provide long-term advocacy and support for clients to get the help they need and to move on from the abuse.

“As an organisation run by disabled people for disabled people, Stay Safe East provides a safe and accessible space where disabled survivors can be themselves and know they are accepted and understood.”

City Bridge Trust makes grants of £20 million a year to tackle disadvantage across the capital. The Trust has awarded more than 7,700 grants totalling over £370 million since it first began in 1995. It helps achieve the City Corporation’s aim of changing the lives of hundreds of thousands of Londoners. More information can be found at www.citybridgetrust.org.uk.