Aurora New Dawn awarded national accreditation

Posted February 4, 2015 by

Aurora New Dawn have become the first voluntary sector organisation in Hampshire to be awarded Leading Lights accreditation by the national agency Co-Ordinated Action Against Domestic Abuse (CAADA) for work with victims and survivors of domestic abuse.

What is the award?

The award recognises the contribution of Aurora’s Independent Domestic Violence Advisors (known as IDVAs), who work with victims at high risk of serious harm or murder. Advisors work closely with victims and other services, such as police, social services and housing, to reduce the risk of harm to survivors and their children.

CAADA’s Leading Lights accreditation is the national and highest mark of quality for domestic abuse services. The status recognises that Aurora IDVAs provide a gold-standard, safety-focused service at every level that puts victim and survivors at the heart of the organisation’s work.

Aurora New Dawn is only the 39th service to be accredited in the UK, just 3 years after the service’s inception. The process of accreditation takes around 12 months, and involves the separate assessment and accreditation of the service manager, the submission of an extensive evidence dossier and, finally, an assessment visit from the CAADA Leading Lights Team.

Zoe Jackson, Operations Manager said:

“We are incredibly proud to have achieved Leading Lights Status, particularly within just 3 years of us starting out. The status reflects the high standards we expect from our service and is a real credit to the incredible work of our frontline staff. Our team are working closely with clients every day and the assessment process looked at every aspect of their work, including complete scrutiny of our case files, risk assessment, safety planning, advocacy and beyond.

We are also delighted to be specifically recognised for seeking regular feedback from all who use our service and incorporating their experiences into the ongoing development of our organisation. In the last 9 months 100% of our clients have told us they feel safer as a direct result of working with our IDVAs and it’s fantastic to see that work recognised.”

CEO Shonagh Dillon said:

“The whole team and I are so thrilled about being awarded Leading Lights status. Survivors of domestic abuse, sexual violence and stalking have always been at the centre of our practice and we are committed to continuing this as the organisation grows. It’s really gratifying to our frontline team to receive such a commendation of their work at a time of such great financial challenge for domestic violence services, particularly as Leading Lights status will help us to attract funding in the future.

“The accreditation will definitely help us to keep working closely with victims and survivors in Hampshire, to keep improving our services and to increase the safety of the many families who suffer in silence every day as a result of domestic abuse. We’re very grateful to CAADA for their guidance and support and we’re very excited to continue our work with them in the future.”

The Chair of the Internal Accreditation Panel said:  

‘We’re delighted to have awarded Leading Lights status to Aurora New Dawn. What came through during the assessment process was a firm commitment from the team to get it right first time for victims of abuse. We were pleased with their determination to use data to learn and improve, setting and achieving really high standards of support.’

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About the author

Writer in Residence

Sarah Cheverton is Aurora New Dawn's Writer in Residence and a freelance writer and researcher. As well as writing the copy for the Aurora website, Sarah works with the Aurora team on consultation responses, communications and service evaluations. She also works as a Co-Editor for feminist news site Women's Views on News.

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