LONDON – While most people view Thanksgiving and Christmas as a glimmer of hope for a very difficult 2020 year, for some – especially victims of domestic violence – being trapped at home during the holiday season can turn into a nightmare.
Solace Women’s Aid, a UK charity that works to end violence against women and girls, has launched a campaign to raise awareness of the plight that many women and children will face this festive season.
The organization’s Jarring Ad points out that it is not just physical, sexual and spiritual abuse itself that harms women and girls. Rather, it is the trauma that they have to endure. The persistent emotional fear after a physical attack in their own home causes them to relive terrible memories over and over again, which makes escape seem impossible.
The spot, created by the non-profit in collaboration with the London agency Stack, uses repetitive music to get its message across.
The display opens with a celebratory home frame. The scene focuses on a warm fire under Christmas stockings hanging from the mantelpiece. A playback of “Deck the Halls” is playing in the background. But as the joyful melody repeats itself and ultimately frantically repeats itself, the traditional holiday classic becomes almost unbearable before it is cut out.
The # MakeItStop spot shows how some women and girls cannot stop repeating their own traumatic experiences. She urges donations to her services to provide therapy for survivors and to help them “gain control over their experiences” through therapy.
The organization anticipated an increase in demand during the holiday season. During the pandemic, Solace is reporting high-risk abuse cases that have increased 67%.
Fiona Dwyer, Solace CEO, said trauma causes long-term harm that many domestic violence survivors struggle with.
“For this reason, in addition to leading refugee services and security facilities for women and children to escape domestic violence and violence, Solace offers specific therapy and counseling services to help survivors on their long-term path to healing and recovery,” she said.
“This year, during the pandemic and ongoing lockdowns, Solace has seen an increase in women seeking our help, and we are also seeing an increase in women facing complex trauma and mental health issues due to their abuse and violence “, added her.