Toni’s Journey

Toni* is in her mid-thirties with two small children. She is divorced from her husband and recently began a new relationship with Sam*.

During the first year of the relationship, Toni and Sam decided to live together and Toni and the children moved in with Sam to a property he owned.

Within a few months, Sam began to verbally abuse her in front of the children and began to verbally abuse the children themselves. The abuse worsened to threats of physical harm towards Toni.

Within a few weeks of that threat, Sam began throwing items such as vases, crockery and during the last incident, he threw a frying pan at her.

Around this time, Toni saw a counsellor who helped her realise that she was experiencing family violence. Toni and her counsellor met with an EDVOS advocate to carry out a risk assessment and help Toni plan a safe exit from the relationship.

The challenges of Toni’s situation

Toni did not have enough money to move out of Sam’s house, as she had invested her savings and contributed to his mortgage payments.

Toni was committed to providing a safe and stable home for her two young children and wanted to leave her partner’s house as soon as possible.

Toni had been on parental leave from her job for five years. While her return to work date was approaching and the income offered future financial support, Toni wanted to find a new home and settle her children before returning to full time work and before her youngest child began school.

Meanwhile, the risk of further violence for Toni and her children was increasing.

What did EDVOS do to help Toni?

The EDVOS advocate was able to utilise the Flexible Support Package (FSP) to provide financial assistance to move Toni and her children into a new property prior to her return to work.  The funds paid for a number of expenses including new furniture, as Toni was not able to take any furniture with her.

The funds also helped Toni to buy new work clothes and other household items damaged due to the family violence.

A positive outcome

Toni and the children are settled into their new home and Toni has returned to full time work.

Her children’s emotional health has improved and she is also feeling more stable and safe. She is happy that the FSP program could assist her in the early stages of her family violence experience.

*name changed to protect privacy.

Without this help I would not have been able to leave as quickly as I did. I’m so grateful that EDVOS knew what to do and that they thought I’d be suitable for this financial help, thank you.
Toni - EDVOS client