47% of Maltese think women often make up or exaggerate abuse or rape claims

Agencies are helping women mute the voice of violence.

Digital agency ANCHOVY, SOAR (a service under the Jean D’Antide Foundation) and marketing company MPS have partnered up to bring awareness on domestic violence and abuse against women in Malta.

This partnership has culminated into a campaign aimed at driving women who are looking to extricate themselves from a violent situation, to SOAR. This is where viewers will be exposed to a vivid visual experience through which sounds, and images will be utilised with the objective being to bring out a plethora of different emotions experienced by these victims.

The campaign is built on the data provided by Soar which highlights the following shocking statistics:

  • 42.9% experienced more than one violent incident (The Crime Victimisation Survey of 2015 in Malta
  • 47% of Maltese people agree that “women often make up or exaggerate claims of abuse or rape” (The Special Eurobarometer 449 on gender based violence of 2016)
  • 42.9% of victims attributed these incidents to various precipitating factors such as the ‘mentality that man is always right’ (The Crime Victimisation Survey of 2015)

These are serious issues which are close to the hearts of both ANCHOVY and MPS staff who have decided to dedicate time and energy to this campaign in order to give back to the victims of these heinous crimes.

This is particularly meaningful to them because in 2019, SOAR provided free long-term open-ended support to a record 112 families, improving the lives of 155 children. This helped families to become resilient and to better cope with challenges that they faced, to secure stability and safety, to support their wellbeing, encourage self-development and prevented families from becoming homeless and destitute. This further underlines the fact that without funding, none of this would have been possible.

The goal of the campaign is to generate enough donations to allow SAOR to continue to provide these much-needed services to more survivors as well as towards one of SOAR’s imminent projects.

The SOAR Survivors’ Hub is a townhouse in Tarxien which will become a safe, secure, nurturing space designed to fit the needs of a community of survivors and their children and will act as a drop in, day care centre offering access to all SOAR’s services, including a free library, garden and workshops.

You may donate here.

Testimonials from survivors

“I’m accepted for who I am, given support when I needed it without a restriction of time. This has lifted my spirit and has definitely given me strength to rebuild my life.”

“SOAR offers an amazing group of women who support each other like no one else can, as they understand and don’t judge as you go through the ups and downs of surviving an abusive relationship. The time spent together helps soothe the scars and give hope.”

About SOAR

SOAR is a free service offered by the St Jeanne Antide Foundation aimed at facilitating the healing and recovery process of domestic abuse survivors and their children by helping them to rebuild their lives after domestic violence. It has a number of objectives. Every year SOAR runs several projects, programmes and initiatives to empower women with access to knowledge, mentorship, support, in-kind assistance, social inclusion, and learning and advocacy. Through this, women and their children can ultimately find healing, stability and improve the quality of their lives on their journey of recovery away from violence.

About the Survivors Hub

The SOAR Survivors’ Hub is a townhouse set in the heart of the village of Tarxien. It is envisaged to become a safe, secure, nurturing space designed to fit the needs of a community of survivors and their children. The hub will be similar to a day centre, open during daytime and evening hours, with access to the range of services and activities offered by SOAR.

SOAR will be able to extend and grow its services, offering a pop-up office and library for use by survivors to research, study or photocopy and print. It will also offer patches of the garden for women and children to cultivate their own organic produce. The hub will have a space for a multimedia and multisensory room, opening up the doors to a new range of services that will include on-site training, wellbeing sessions (yoga, meditation, mindfulness etc.) and the occasional movie night. The garden will include a butterfly garden as an outdoor space for wellbeing activities and an herb garden.

The hub will also house the SOAR offices, a kitchen to cook and serve Saturday lunch and a consultation room that can be booked by practitioners to meet survivors. Another section of the hub will be used by Meraki Soaps, SOAR’s social enterprise. Meraki Soaps is an initiative that is contributing to the sustainability of the creative peer-mentoring programme.

The hub needs extensive renovation and the building of an extension before SOAR can move its services to it.

This content was supplied by MPS