TWO charities have launched a partnership that will see them work more closely together to help victims of domestic violence.

Bradford-based Staying Put, and Domestic Violence Services Keighley, officially launched their partnership at a celebratory lunch at the Great Victoria Hotel, Bradford.

The charities will collaborate more closely as they continue their work supporting more than 3,000 victims of domestic abuse annually in Bradford and district.

“We are celebrating our 16th year on April 1, and as our sweet 16th it is perfect timing for us to grow as an organisation with Domestic Violence Services Keighley, who share our values,” said Yasmin Khan, director of Staying Put.

Since its inception, Staying Put has helped to change 50,000 lives. The service supports women and children who are fleeing domestic violence, yet allows them to remain in their own homes.

Ms Khan said that while the charity worked predominantly with female victims of domestic violence and their families, last year they expanded to offer support to male victims.

Staying Put and Domestic Violence Services Keighley have already been working together delivering support services, and discussions about making the partnership more official have been ongoing for two years.

Ms Khan said the charities had real strength in terms of expertise. Working collaboratively would help them achieve better outcomes.

“One of the things we learned, our experience has taught us, is remaining small we could not remain sustainable,” said Ms Khan.

She said reporting of domestic violence to the police had increased year-on-year due to a number of factors such as improved services and a co-ordinated response. Reduction in statutory services and austerity may have also had an impact.

Di Reed, director of Domestic Violence Services Keighley, which was originally founded 28 years ago under the auspice of Keighley Domestic Violence Forum, said working in collaboration with Staying Put was a natural step.

She said it would allow them to become more aligned and efficient as well as retaining the localism which was important to their clients.

“We have worked together with Staying Put for a number of years. We do the same work and so it is just a closer, more legal partnership. It is recognising that individuals, particularly where they feel disempowered, want local services and that is why we chose this model of working together.”