What is MARVOW?
Multi-Agency Responses to Violence Against of Older Women (MARVOW) is a two-year project co-funded by the European Commission under the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme (Daphne Programme), which aims to improve protection and support for eldery victims of gender-based domestic abuse.
The project partners will first map the current situation in their countries and analyse the multi-agency approaches to working with perpetrators of this violence. Training materials will be created to highlight a multi-agency model for working with older victims.
- Improve responses to eldery victims of violence.
- Improve knowledge of stakeholders in the prevention and response to domestic violence.
- Develop a multi-agency response model to help protect and support elderly women at high risk of abuse, as well as to work with their perpetrators.
- Share the model with other communities so that it can be replicated.
- Austrian Women’s Shelter Network (AÖF), Project Leader, Austria
- Union of Women Associations of Heraklion (UWAH) Greece
- University of Tartu (UT), Estonia
- Women’s Support and Information Centre (WISC), Estonia
- Women against Violence Europe (WAVE), Austria
- European Network for the Work with Perpetrators of Domestic Violence (WWP EN), Germany
Why is this project important?
The DAPHNE-funded WHOSEFVA (working with healthcare organisations to support elderly female victims of abuse) project highlighted the fact that practitioners were unsure how to proceed when it came to elderly victims of abuse. Older victims fall into the gap between two forms of family violence: intimate partner violence (IPV) and elder abuse. In the case of IPV, older women can face barriers that keep them in the relationship (e.g. inability to obtain employment or sense of obligation to care for their abuser). The issue is further complicated by the fact that abusers or victims may have cognitive impairments or psychiatric illness. Older victims of abuse often require intervention by several different institutional actors at once. However, the WHOSEFVA project found that out of 327 professionals from 6 EU countries, 96.6% had never/rarely been trained on elder abuse. In addition to this, Europe’s population is aging and the amount of people over 65 is projected to rise from 29.6% in 2016 to 51.2% in 2070, making this project all the more important.
- Increased knowledge of violence against elderly women.
- Stakeholders in the field of violence against elderly women will gain specialised knowledge and improve their competencies when it comes to treating victims and perpetrators of this violence.
- Policy makers (local and national level) will gain access to information regarding the gendered aspect of elder abuse.
- Elderly female victims of domestic violence, care givers, perpetrators and possible perpetrators will become aware of services and will be encouraged to report cases to receive the necessary support.