Latest news

  • Coercive or controlling behaviour is now a crime

    2nd February 2016

    Coercive or controlling behaviour now a crime 

    The government’s new coercive or controlling behaviour offence will mean victims who experience the type of behaviour that stops short of serious physical violence, but amounts to extreme psychological and emotional abuse, can bring their perpetrators to justice

    The offence will carry a maximum of 5 years’ imprisonment, a fine or both.

    Minister for Preventing Abuse and Exploitation Karen Bradley said:

    “No one should live in fear of domestic abuse, which is why this government has made ending violence against women and girls a priority.

    “Our new coercive or controlling behaviour offence will protect victims who would otherwise be subjected to sustained patterns of abuse that can lead to total control of their lives by the perpetrator.

    “We are sending a clear message that it is wrong to violate the trust of those closest to you and that emotional and controlling abuse will not be tolerated.”

    Referrals, prosecutions and the volume of convictions for domestic violence and abuse have risen to their highest ever levels.

    The government is committed to supporting the police to bring offenders to justice and to ensure victims have the support they need to rebuild their lives.

    Coercive or controlling behaviour does not relate to a single incident, it is a purposeful pattern of incidents that occur over time in order for one individual to exert power, control or coercion over another.

    The new offence aims to close a gap in the law around patterns of coercive and controlling behaviour during a relationship between intimate partners, former partners who still live together, or family members.

    This sends a clear message that it is wrong to violate the trust of those closest to you, providing better protection to victims experiencing continuous abuse and allowing for earlier identification, intervention and prevention.

  • Useful information if you are separating

    2nd February 2016

    If you are separating from your partner you might find some useful information here

  • Christmas Opening Times

    22nd December 2015

    The First Step Centre will be closing at 2.00 pm on Christmas Eve and will re-open on Tuesday 29th and Wednesday 30th December between 10.00 am and 2.00 pm.  On 31st December the opening hours will be 10.oo am to 2.00 pm.  Normal services will be resumed on Monday 4th January 2016.

    Our women and children’s refuge is open 24/7 and will be staffed throughout the holiday period.

    If you need support outside of our opening hours you can call the National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247 – this line is open 24 hour a day, seven days a week.

    If you are in immediate danger you should call the Police on 999

    We wish you a happy and safe Christmas and New Year.

  • Big Thank You

    16th December 2015

    Many thanks to our friends at Knowsley Chamber for their generous donations toward the Christmas Party for the women and children living in our refuge – helping to make happy and positive memories. It’s going to be fun – Santa is on his way!

  • Christmas Party

    2nd December 2015

    Can you help us to create positive and happy memories for the women and children staying in our refuge?

    We want to give them a Christmas party to remember but we are desperate for donations to buy the party food.  If you can help us by making a small donation we would be very grateful.




  • “Lets Get Knowsley Talking”

    21st October 2015

    Our exciting White Ribbon event on 1st December at The First Step Centre.  It’s going to be a great day, three lively discussion groups: ‘Listen don’t label’, ‘Challenging the perpetrator’, and ‘Behind the headlines’.  We are anticipating a huge response to this event, places are limited so you need to book … more information here

  • Recruiting now

    8th October 2015

    We currently have vacancies for:  InPACT Programme Manager, Integrated Partner Service Worker and Refuge Worker.
    For more information click here: 

  • Thank you QVC

    28th August 2015

    Many thanks to our friends at QVC who have just given us a brand new single bed mattress.  This will be very useful when a family are leaving refuge and setting up a new home.

  • Big “Thank You” to Procter and Gamble

    28th August 2015

    Procter and Gamble have been very generous with their donations to people who use our services and we would like to say a big “thank you” for everything we have been given.

    When women enter refuge they often don’t have anything so we try to help out with emergency toiletry and cleaning packs for each family – as ever the cost of doing this is always a factor.  Thanks to Procter and Gamble these packs will now be readily available.  Pictured is a small selection of the items they have recently given us, their donation will be put to good use and is very much appreciated.

    Our refuge manager with some of the donated items from P&G

    Some of the donated items from P&G

  • Big “Thank You” to Barclaycard

    28th August 2015

    We would like to say a big “thank you” to the staff at Barclaycard who generously raised £250 for us, which was then match funded by Barclaycard.  The £500 has enabled us to put together 25 Resettlement Packs (example pictured) to give to families as they leave refuge.  The cost of setting up a new home can be huge, especially on a fixed income.  Thanks to the help from Barclaycard we can now offer  a helping hand when women are setting up their new homes.

    Some of the staff from Barclaycard

    Some of the staff from Barclaycard


    A typical Resettlement Pack

    A typical Resettlement Pack