SCARS and DV Safe Phones announce partnership

By Kirra Livingstone

THE Sunshine Coast Animal Refuge (SCARS) and DV Safe Phones have announced their partnership yesterday, with support from philanthropist Neil Badcock from the Badcock Foundation.

DV Safe Phones CEO, Ashton Wood, explained what the organisation does, and how beneficial the partnership with SCARS will be to both organisations.

“DV Safe Phones partner with over 250 domestic violence agencies, but we also seek partnerships with other community groups to help us raise awareness and phones which is perfect,” he said.

“We will raise awareness around what SCARS do because it’s such an amazing service, and in return they have a drop off box which collects phones for us to give to domestic violence survivors.”

DV Safe Phones have around 600 drop off spots and have protected around 5,500 survivors across Australia in three years of operation, while testing and distributing roughly 70 phones a week.

SCARS patron ,Penny Brischke, praised the efforts of DV Safe Phones, and explained how the two organisations have a shared interest.

“Animals are involved in 70 per cent of domestic violence situations… when people are in crisis, their pets are in crisis as well, and to be able to highlight this as a big issue is important to us,” she said.

“In a lot of cases, victims of domestic violence have to surrender their pet, but at least they are provided comfort knowing that we are going to look after them, and find them a wonderful forever home.

“Hopefully moving into the future, we would like to be able to develop a program where we can actually temporarily provide some sort of safe accommodation for pets in crisis.

“We are working towards that, and having this DV Safe Phones box and partnership is where we are hoping it will lead us, and this is going to be one of the first steps to actually help in that process.”

Badcock Foundation supports both organisations through donations and volunteering, including testing and labeling phones once a week with DV Safe Phones, which Mr Wood is very appreciative of.