The project DV_Support is a European Union Horizon 2020 – Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action to carry out the first-ever study of domestic abuse amongst Polish women living in the UK or any EU country. It draws on an inter-sectoral and interdisciplinary collaboration between Dr Iwona Zielińska (Principal Investigator), EDAN Lincs – the main domestic abuse organisation in Lincolnshire (Host Organisation) and a team of senior researchers at the University of Lincoln (UoL – Secondment).
There are three main goals of the project:
- Understand the nature of domestic violence experienced by Polish women in the UK, including the cultural, transnational, migration, family and socio-economic factors that influence it.
- Identify barriers to and enablers of help-seeking, leaving and recovering from abusive relationships by Polish women living in the UK
- Make recommendations about how domestic violence services in the UK, Poland and EU countries can better respond to the specific needs of Polish migrant women.
A mixture of qualitative methods are being utilised in the study: (1) media analysis of representations of domestic abuse in Poland; (2) interviews with frontline professionals who have direct experience of working with domestic abuse in Polish families in the UK (3) in-depth life history interviews with Polish women victims/survivors of domestic abuse (4) organisational analysis of the history, successes and challenges faced by specialist domestic abuse services for Polish women in the UK.
The project’s final report with findings and practice, policy and research recommendations was published in June 2022.