Church of North India - Delhi Brotherhood Society Women's Helpline

THE CHURCH OF NORTH INDIA (CNI): DELHI BROTHERHOOD SOCIETY WOMEN’S HELPLINE

The CNI women’s helpline was launched in 2014, but the CNI’s Delhi Brotherhood Society (DBS) had been supporting women experiencing abuse for over 20 years prior to establishing this.  Since it was created, there has been an increase in the number of cases of abuse and harassment being reported to and resolved by the local council, making legal aid and police protection more accessible.

The helpline now plays a key role in the DBS’s aims to reduce gender-based violence and provide emotional, medical, legal and financial support to women. Since its launch, more than 1,200 women have called the helpline and received emotional and practical support. The phone number is advertised by various campaigns, social workers and word of mouth, and women are reassured that they can call anonymously and there will always be a sympathetic ear listening to them when they do. The helpline is mainly intended for women in the northern, central and New Delhi areas. However, the DBS investigates all the calls that come in, regardless of where the callers are from.

Running alongside the helpline are a range of activities on the ground. The Women’s Helpline Service holds community meetings, awareness-raising events and celebrations, and provides help with rehabilitation and resettlement, property rights and legal advocacy. Outreach workers and community volunteers trained by the church visit women in person to discuss their cases in more detail. The women - and where necessary, their children and families - are given legal and financial assistance, and any other help they might need.

The CNI and the DBS realise that society as a whole needs to be more vigilant in tackling gender-based violence. Towards this end, the church regularly holds meetings and events to raise awareness of gender-based violence and gender injustice.