Woman and Child Abuse MA
This course provides a comprehensive grounding in theoretical frameworks, research, policy and practice approaches to woman and child abuse, and is supported by the internationally renowned Child and Woman Abuse Studies Unit.
The course is excellent preparation for those who wish to establish or further their careers in this sector. Graduates of this MA have gone on to key roles in policymaking or service delivery at local, regional and national levels. Some graduates have also pursued further studies to PhD level, including the Child and Women Abuse Studies Unit. http://www.londonmet.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/woman-and-child-abuse---ma/
The full course cost is £7,965. I aim to start the course in October 2016 or January 2017 - depending on funding.
Why do I want to study this Masters?
I have a first class law degree. During my degree I developed an in-depth knowledge of criminal law, and the justice system more broadly, evidence law, and family law. Particularly evident during my study, were the flaws within our legal system that disproportionately affect women, specifically survivors of gender based violence. However, my understanding is from more than a purely academic perspective. Unfortunately, I have first hand experience, as do 1 in 3 women worldwide.
As a survivor myself, I have experienced the effects of domestic and sexual violence, and the re-traumatisation of going through the criminal ‘justice’ system as a ‘complainant’ of sexual violence.
I am particularly passionate about addressing the flaws within the criminal justice system. Women should not have to endure further re-traumatisation; the system needs to change in order to ensure that survivors are respected within our criminal justice system, and have a realistic prospect of achieving justice.
The Woman and Child Abuse MA will enable me to research and gain a deeper understanding of the forms of abuse women and girls experience, the contexts in which they occur and their effects, against the backdrop of our legal and criminal justice system. I will then be in a fully informed position to move into policy-making work, lobbying parliament, legal reform, and will initiate direct action.
We desperately need meaningful change, whereby women have a voice and are adequately represented in the legal process, higher reporting and conviction rates are achieved, effective preventative perpetrator intervention work is undertaken, and there is a more unified approach to ending violence against women and girls.
The ultimate aim, of course, is a society free from violence against women and girls.
Prevalence of Violence Against Women and Girls in the UK
- In 2012 1.2 million women in the UK experienced domestic abuse, 60,000 were raped
- On average 2 women a week are killed by their current or former partner
- An incident of domestic violence is reported to the police every minute
- 1 in 4 women will be the victim of domestic violence in their lifetime - many of these on a number of occasions.
What about violence against men?
I want to make clear, that I do recognise that violence against men does occur, and it is not acceptable. However, the reality is that majority of violence is perpetrated by men against women.
Gender based violence (male perpetrated violence against women) is so prevalent that it is recognised as a human rights issue, an equality issue, and as discrimination against women. (United Nations Convention for the Elimination of all Forms of Violence Against Women)
A specialist focus is therefore required if we are to tackle the pandemic of violence against women and girls.
How have I contributed so far?
Volunteer - Caseworker, Victim support
I provided emotional and practical support to victims of crime and anti-social behaviour, by advocating on their behalf to other agencies, including the police, local authority and housing associations, as well as assisting them in making applications to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.
Volunteer - McKenzie Friend, NCDV
I assisted survivors in telling their stories by drafting witness statements for emergency injunction applications (non-molestation orders, occupation orders, and prohibited steps orders), and by accompanying them to court hearings in the family courts, and assisting them in navigating the court process.
Immigration Caseworker, Community Law Centre
I provided legal representation to survivors of domestic and sexual violence, trafficking, asylum seekers, and other human rights abuses. Many were particularly vulnerable as they had no recourse to public funds, due to their precarious immigration status, and therefore often had no way out of their abusive relationships.
Caseworker, Charity Supporting Domestic and Sexual Violence Survivors
As an advice caseworker I provide emotional and practical support to survivors. This involves responding to crisis cases, undertaking risk assessments, providing practical information, support and advocacy, and making counselling referrals.
Why haven't I revealed my identity?
As you know, I am a survivor of domestic and sexual violence. Due to the very intimate nature of the trauma I have experienced, and the stigma attached to it, I would prefer not to disclose my identity so publicly. I hope that through further healing and the study of my Masters, that I will feel empowered to link my experiences with my identity publicly in the future.
What would you be contributing to?
Ultimately the aim is to end violence against women and girls; I am dedicating my life to this work. Considering the extensive cuts to legal aid and government funding to domestic violence services it is inevitable that the sector is under resourced, and those who work within it are on very low incomes.
Those of us who work in this sector are passionate about this work and are committed to ensuring that survivors have the opportunity to build a safe and secure future for themselves and their children, despite the financial impact it has on us.
The reality for me is that self-funding my further education, in order to really make a difference in this sector, will prove extremely difficult. I am therefore concerned that this pressure will take away from my ability to focus on my masters and reach my full potential; in order to go on to affect the meaningful change that is desperately needed.
Of course I have no expectations of anyone financially supporting me to achieve this. However, if you support my aims and feel compelled to help in any way then you will not just be contributing to my development, but you will also be contributing to the wider movement to end violence against women and girls.
Any contribution, however great or small, will be greatly appreciated and invested well.
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- National Domestic Violence Helpline: 0808 2000 247
Open 24 hours
- National Rape Crisis Helpline: 0808 802 9999
Open daily from 12pm-2.30pm, 7pm-9.30pm and also 3pm-5.30pm on weekdays
- Modern Slavery (Human Trafficking) Helpline: 0300 3038151
Open 24 hours
- Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) Helpline: 0800 028 3550
Open 24 hours
- Honour Based Violence and Forced Marriage Helpline: 0800 599 9247
Open 9am-9pm on weekdays, and 10am-4pm at weekends
- Childline - 0800 1111
Open 24 hours