Government awards new funding to improve support for victims of terrorism
14 October 2020
NEW GOVERNMENT funding will be provided to improve the services which support victims of terrorism, the Home Office has announced. £500,000 will be split equally between four successful bidders following the conclusion of a competitive fund announced by Home Secretary Priti Patel back in March.
Victim Support, the South London and Maudsley NHS Trust, Cruse Bereavement Care and The Peace Foundation will now each receive £125,000 to provide advice and support to those who’ve been affected by terrorist attacks.
The Home Secretary explained: “I’m determined to make sure that victims of terrorism receive the support they deserve as soon as they need it.
This new funding is so important to provide more care and specialist advice to those up and down the country who have suffered trauma as a result of terrorism.”
Bidders to the fund will now draw on their expertise to provide a range of specialist advice and support to individuals who have experienced a terrorist attack, either here in the UK or abroad.
For its part, Victim Support will run a 24-hour assessment service which will ensure each person receives tailored help after being impacted by terrorism. The organisation’s CEO Diana Fawcett stated: “We know that, for those affected, terror attacks can have a significant and often life-changing impact. Support is vital from the immediate aftermath of an incident. We welcome this funding that will enable us to further strengthen the range of specialist support services that we provide to survivors.”
South London and Maudsley NHS Trust will provide specialist clinical mental health screening and therapy. David Bradley, the NHS Foundation Trust’s CEO, observed: “We’re pleased this funding will enable us to offer vital specialist care and support to people who have been affected by a terror incident. We know people are resilient, but traumatic events can have a lasting impact. We want to help people who may be struggling to cope and who may benefit from professional mental health support.”
Cruse Bereavement will provide specialist bereavement support for victims who would not otherwise be eligible through the existing homicide service, such as witnesses and first responders.
Steven Wibberley, CEO at Cruse Bereavement Care, said: “This vital funding will enable us to provide expert bereavement support to the victims of terrorism, both immediately at the scene and long-term. This is a crucial step forward when it comes to recognising the complex needs of those affected by such traumatic events.”
Peer support network
The Peace Foundation’s UK-wide service will focus on providing a long-term peer support network for the victims of terrorism, duly connecting them to others who have had similar experiences.
Nick Taylor, CEO at The Peace Foundation, commented: “Over two decades, we’ve developed a unique peer-to-peer approach to help people share their experiences, receive specialist advice and improve health and well-being. This Home Office funding is welcome and helps secure The Peace Foundation’s service. It will serve to strengthen the support available for those individuals affected by terrorism.”
The announcement is part of the Home Secretary’s efforts to improve support for the victims of terrorism and follows a stated commitment to carry out a comprehensive internal review of the support available.