Canberra scheme supports domestic violence victims with micro loans

In Canberra (Australia), a micro-finance scheme has been established to offer no-interest loans to survivors of family violence, -with a focus on those who earn too much to qualify for government assistance but too little to manage essential costs-. Canberra coordinators raised $275,000 to support the program.

Research from the Domestic Violence Crisis Service has revealed that a large number of domestic violence victims lost their homes after leaving their abuser. As a result, there is a need for small loans to support victims of domestic violence in getting their lives back to normal.

“People who work in retail and hospitality and the community sector, they’re on lower wages but you try finding rentals and all that sort of stuff and paying your bills in Canberra, let alone also having to leave a domestic violence relationship.” told Marcia Williams, the Women’s Centre for Health Matters chief executive

About 10 people have received $30,000 in loans since July last year. About 40 percent of successful loan applicants have been Indigenous, and the majority aged between 35 and 44. Loan recipients have used the funds for school fees, buying furniture, legal fees, rental bonds and car repairs and registration.

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