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“They helped me to leave, stay safe and get my life back.”

Mary, a partially sighted 82-year-old, requested our support earlier in the year. Her son and his two daughters had moved in with her, and were financially abusive, controlling and manipulative. Despite being in poor health, Mary was made to do all the cleaning and washing, and her son took her pension from her account. It was only when she could not get a reading from her gas meter and, confused, rang the police for help, did anyone realise that she was being abused. Essex Police referred Mary to us, because they didn’t know of anywhere else which could help her.

We met Mary in local cafes and another charity for older people. She told us that the house she had lived in for 50 years no longer felt like home because of the abuse she was experiencing. She didn’t want to live there a moment longer. She was also very lonely. We assessed her level of need and her risk, helped her to change her bank account and worked with her to find suitable sheltered accommodation away from her son. Mary is now living in her own flat. Her quality of life has improved, and she does not feel bullied anymore.

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