Watch: Works progressing on Fondazzjoni Sebħ domestic violence shelter in Żejtun

Works on the shelter which will be welcoming victims of domestic violence are well underway. The shelter which will be managed by Church NGO Fondazzjoni Sebħ is located at the Jesus of Nazareth Institute, where the nuns of the Missionary Sisters of Jesus of Nazareth also have their institute.

Fondazzjoni Sebħ director Yvonne Mallia in comments to explained that at present women and their children are housed at Dar Qalb ta’ Ġesù in Santa Venera, however the Church has leased the place to Hospice Movement and will be subsequently developed into a palliative care hospital, the first one of its type in Malta. Those who make use of the second stage shelter services provided by Fondazzjoni Sebħ will move to Żejtun.

Speaking to Mallia explained that those who come to the second stage shelter, would have spent three to six months at an emergency shelter. At the second stage shelter, victims spend twelve to eighteen months. Plans for their future are worked out along with the social workers so that they may regain independence. Mallia explained that in certain cases, some individuals require further help and for this reason, the foundation has three apartments. She underlined however that those making use of their services are helped and empowered to return back to the community.

Mallia explained that the shelter offers also a multifaith prayer room where people of other faiths can pray.

Asked about how frequent people request their services, Mallia explained that shelter is always full, with victims of domestic violence sometimes being placed on waiting lists before they can access their services.

Curia’s head of media Kevin Papagiorcopulo said that close to €500,000 is being invested to get the shelter operative at the new location, during a walkabout on site.

Madre Phyllis Agius explained that the Missionary Sisters of Jesus of Nazareth were founded Giuseppina Curmi who took care of the orphans in Żejtun. She explained that there was a time when the convent was self-sufficient with sisters working in the fields, another baking bread, among other work required to run the convent.