Funds awarded to help children affected by domestic and sexual abuse in Oxfordshire

21 March 2024
3 mins

Children as young as 11 years old look set to benefit from a charity offering support for children who have been victims of sexual exploitation, domestic abuse, bullying and abuse related to social media.


Clean Slate – a charity based in Oxfordshire - has been awarded a grant to deliver the project, entitled Believe, by our Community Chest; currently the charity supports children from the age of 16 but with a huge increase in the number of younger girls seeking help, the extra funding will enable it to provide these vital services to children as young as 11. 


The charity applied to our Community Chest, a funding pot for Platform customers and local charities, clubs and other not-for-profit organisations for any projects directly benefitting Platform customers; all applications are assessed against specific eligibility criteria by customers who sit on its Customer Experience Panel.


Anji Hall, Counsellor and Founder from Clean Slate said : “We are delighted to have been awarded this grant from Platform Housing Group.  We have seen a huge increase in the number of younger girls seeking support – many of whom are not attending school and suffering from severe anxiety - and these much needed funds will help us to do this. Incidents of domestic abuse against teenagers is on the increase and this can be attributed to the national picture of young men using the Internet to access porn, which is often depicted using violence against women.  Children as young as 8 are experiencing bullying on social media and girls as young as 12 have been involved in sending explicit pictures of themselves which have then be distributed at school.  The picture is very worrying.”

The grant will help train extra volunteers to facilitate support groups for children; provide additional training to its counsellors to work with children; work with local schools to provide education regarding abuse, as well as providing a pathway for referrals of children for one to one support and developing a training course for children to enable them to understand what coercive control is and what abuse looks like.


Marion Duffy, Chief Operations Officer at Platform Housing Group said : “The emotional support offered by the Believe project to young girls will be invaluable for their sustained and long term mental health, in an age where young people can be so affected by anxiety; we are humbled to be able to support Clean Slate in the challenging work they undertake.”


Anji concluded: “We are very grateful to Platform for its support, which helps us to continue to assist  young girls in learning about positive relationships instead of adopting negative coping strategies – such as drugs, alcohol and self harm – which can have such a devastating effect.”


According to Thames Valley Police crime figures, violence and sexual crimes make up more than 50 per cent of reported crimes in Oxfordshire.