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We need to raise vital funds to carry out a Trevi DIY SOS project to breathe new life into our women's and children's residential rehab.

by Trevi House in Plymouth, England, United Kingdom

Every 16 minutes another child is taken into care with only 1 in 10 reunited with their mum.

Many of the UK’s most vulnerable women face a cross-section of disadvantages, including domestic abuse, addiction, mental ill health, childhood trauma, homelessness and low self-esteem.

Our charity supports vulnerable women that face disadvantages such as these, however we estimate that due to the global pandemic our charity will be impacted financially by losses of at least £221,000 by October at a time when the need for our services has increased.

We need vital funds to undertake a DIY SOS Project in Trevi House, our Residential Rehabilitation centre in Plymouth. With your help, we will be able to raise £10,000 to invest in our rehab centre’s living space – breathe new life and love into the décor and furnishings.


Trevi is an award-winning women’s and children’s charity based in the South West. Operating since 1993, we provide safe and nurturing spaces where women and children can heal, grow and thrive. Our broad mix of trauma-informed services means that we are uniquely placed to help any woman with support needs to move forward in life.  

Our vision is a society where women can access good quality, psychologically informed gender-based interventions without apology.  We use our experience, our influence and the expertise of those who we support to improve the response to women in recovery. 

Over the past 27 years, we have helped transform the lives of hundreds of women and children.  We will not stop until every woman with support needs is given the chance to have a better life, achieving long-lasting recovery.


At Trevi House, our dedicated and expert team works with mum to help her break her addiction for good and to be the best mum she can be.  And because of this, almost 8 out of 10 children get to stay with their mum.

This centre takes referrals from across the entire UK and can accommodate up to 10 women and their children at any given time.  Each mother follows a strict therapeutic rehabilitation plan and the average length of stay is 24 weeks.  Facilities include 8 residential rooms, two family apartments, communal living room, dining room, a therapy lodge and an Ofsted registered nursery for children to be looked after during therapy times.

Over a 5-year period alone, Trevi House represents an ethical and cost-effective saving to local authorities of almost £250,000 per family[1] –  a return on investment of 5.95.  



“Trevi is an amazing and magical place, where life really does begin.”


“Trevi House is truly unique, working with highly stigmatised and traumatised women in a way that supports their dignity. Its approach is incredibly innovative, human and compassionate while delivering highly effective results - improving lives while saving public money in the longer term. By allowing women with difficult backgrounds of substance abuse to live with their children throughout the recovery process, Trevi House improves outcomes for both mothers and children.’’

Katie Pinnock, Director of UK and Ireland Charitable Partnerships at GSK



The coronavirus pandemic has greatly impacted our charity.  Our services have been busier than ever, with our waiting lists growing every day. 

In March our staff acted quickly and implemented a lockdown model at our rehab centre, leaving their own families, to work 72-hour long live-in shifts. This was essential to minimise footfall in and out of the centre as, at that time, we had some very high-risk mothers and tiny babies on site.

Rehab is not easy: it is hard work. When women are admitted to our rehab, they arrive with their lives torn apart - many escaping abusive relationships - exhausted, having given every ounce of their being to fight through the courts to keep their baby.  We are their last chance.  

After detoxing, women must then embark on a long therapeutic programme. They must confront their trauma and understand how it manifests so that they can move forward in life.  

It is important that our rehab feels homely and nurturing so that women and children are supported to heal, grow and thrive.  For some women and children, Trevi House is the first place they experience what a real home is like.

“Trevi House was the first place that I understood as a proper home. It was the first place we had structure as a family.” 

(Ex-child resident who is now at university)

We all know that being confined in the same environment for an uncertain time is deeply challenging.  For Trevi, the lockdown has highlighted a lack of outdoor seating and activities for families to enjoy – particularly during the sunny weather. It has shone a spotlight on some of our internal living spaces that need a desperate revamp.    


Before the pandemic, we had budgeted for redecoration and refurbishment work to take place this year, however due to Covid-19, this budget has been depleted; our income has significantly dropped, and we’re facing rising unforeseen costs such as PPE, increased staff time to cover the lockdown model and essential IT equipment for virtual working.  In actual fact, we estimate that our charity will be financially impacted by at least £221,000 by October.



We have reached the time where we need vital funds to undertake a Trevi DIY SOS Project.  With your help, we will be able to invest in our rehab centre’s living space – breathe new life and love into the décor and furnishings.  Funds will also help us purchase essential outdoor furniture for residents to reflect between therapy sessions, and children’s outdoor play equipment – a pirate ship and a sensory garden - to keep little minds and bodies active through joyful play and exploration.

The total cost of this project is £38,000.  We have received support and pledges from trusts, foundations and corporates, however we still desperately need to raise a further £10,000.

To stay true to our dedication to some of society’s most vulnerable women and children, we must ensure that all our living space is nurturing and valuing – giving families the maximum support to create a fresh start in life.


Our dedicated staff and volunteers are on standby to roll up their sleeves, give each living space a fresh lick of paint, lay new flooring, unpack and build new furniture including beds and bedside cabinets, hang new curtains, refurbish the bathrooms, purchase and treat new outdoor seating and bring to life much-needed outdoor children’s play equipment and a sensory garden.  


Please help us make a difference to families in need at this challenging time and make a donation today towards our DIY SOS project.

Your support will help transform the residential space in our rehab, creating a valuing and nurturing space for families for many years to come.

  • A donation of £20 could pay towards new bedding for mum to rest her head on at night after a long day’s work of therapy, enabling her to dream of her new life away from abuse, with her new baby. 
  • A donation of £40 could pay towards outdoor sensory play equipment for children to explore and be active – helping them increase their happiness, confidence, social skills and emotional wellbeing – essential skills to achieve the best start in life.   
  • A donation of £250 could pay for an entire family room to be refurbished, helping a mother and new-born feel at home, valued and nurtured as they start their new life together, away from any trauma or abuse.


  • One in four women in the UK will be affected by domestic abuse at some point in their lives, and recorded rapes have more than doubled in the past six years[2]. 
  • Around one in five women experience a common mental health problem such as anxiety. Many of the UK’s most vulnerable women face a cross-section of disadvantages, including homelessness, alcohol abuse, eating disorders, and low self-esteem[3]. 
  • Every 16 minutes another child is taken into care with only 1 in 10 reunited with their mum[4].
  • Children’s care applications are at their highest level since 2012 with a total of 72,670 children in care[5].  Two thirds of cases involve parental substance misuse.
  • 25% of women who have had a child removed will go onto have another to heal their loss.  This leads to repeated removals – 11,000 mothers had more than one child removed between 2007 and 2014 causing a huge strain on the care system[6]. Little is being done to address the root cause of mothers’ substance misuse (often due to domestic abuse) despite this being a firm recommendation by experts within care proceedings[7].  
  • Plymouth is one of the largest cities on the South Coast and the 15th largest city in England with a population of approximately 264,200; females accounting for 50.2%.  There is a long-standing awareness of the deprivation that exists in Plymouth. Alcohol and drug (illegal and prescribed) dependence are significant issues for the city. These dependencies are commonly associated with mental health problems, homelessness, and offending including domestic abuse[8].



 [1] Dr Warwick and Dr Morley, 2019, Trevi House: An Independent Evaluation, University of Nottingham

[2] http://rosauk.org/our-pillars/

[3] Ibid

[4] https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-41581805

[5]  http://bbc.co.uk/news/education-41581805

[6] http://www.nuffieldfoundation.org/news/study-reveals-link-between-childhood-care-and-mums-who-have-babies-removed-courts

[7] http://www.nuffieldfoundation.org/sites/default/files/files/rc-final-summary-report-v1_6.pdf

[8] Plymouth Report 2017, online https://www.plymouth.gov.uk/sites/default/files/PlymouthReport2017.pdf

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