Smallwood award funding to Surviving Economic Abuse

Surviving Economic Abuse (SEA) was founded in 2017 to raise awareness of economic abuse and transform responses to it. Their vision is a world in which women and girls achieve economic equality and can live their lives free of abuse and exploitation.

SEA is the only UK charity dedicated to raising awareness of and transforming responses to economic abuse. When SEA was founded nearly two years ago, economic abuse was not recognised within policy or legislation. As a result of their efforts, the Westminster Government has now recognised this form of abuse within the new statutory definition contained within the draft Domestic Abuse Bill. In recognition of this achievement, SEA was shortlisted for the campaigning and advocacy category of the Civil Society Charity Awards 2019.

Working with over 100 women as members of an ‘Experts by Experience Group,’ their experiences and knowledge shape how SEA respond. Over three years Smallwood will support SEA with funding to continue to develop their capacity to engage with the Group to shape SEA’s systems and policy advocacy. Employing a dedicated member of staff, SEA aim to connect the Experts by Experience Group with MPs and Peers to further shape the content of the draft Domestic Abuse Bill and to continue to influence the ‘vulnerable customer’ agenda within sectors such as the financial services industry and housing. As a recent survey of the Group showed, its members view their involvement with SEA as a chance to use their experiences to bring about positive change: “An opportunity to voice what has been done to us, through a nationally recognised influential organisation.”

SEA will tackle the structural inequalities that make women vulnerable to domestic abuse whilst ensuring that: perpetrators are held to account; women are supported to achieve economic as well as physical safety; and victim-survivors of economic abuse have access to economic justice (for example through compensation) and the resources they need to rebuild their lives.

Dr. Nicola Sharp-Jeffs, Founder and Director of SEA said, “The support of the Smallwood Trust will enable us to significantly scale up this work and achieve real change for women now and in the future”.

For more information about SEA please visit https://survivingeconomicabuse.org/.

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