Bede Starfish Domestic Abuse Project


The coronavirus crisis

We want to reassure the community and local services that we are here for you and will be doing everything we can to support you during this challenging time.

The Bede Starfish Domestic Abuse Project is currently able to provide telephone support. If it is safe to do so, please contact 0207 237 9162 or email:

Thank you

Steps to keep you safe

During this period you may be searching for help in your local area. It is important to make sure that if you email us you are safe to do so.


Any email you have previously sent will be stored in Sent Items. If you started an email but didn’t finish it, it might be in your Drafts folder. If you reply to any email, the original message will probably be in the body of the message – print and delete the email if you don’t want anyone to see your original message.

When you delete an item in any email program (Outlook Express, Outlook, etc.) it does not really delete the item – it moves the item to a folder called Deleted Items. You have to delete the items in deleted items separately. Right click on items within the Deleted Items folder to delete individual items.

Keeping your online searches private, please see the following link to get more advice: Cover your tracks online

Because there is always hope

The Bede Starfish Domestic Abuse Project works with people affected by Domestic Abuse. Our aim is to help build communities where everyone can be free from fear of violence, no matter who they are or where they come from. If you are being abused within a relationship, we can offer advice and support to help you protect yourself, take action and rebuild your life.

Based in Southwark, we work across the whole borough to help people from all backgrounds build their confidence and be free from abuse. If you are affected by Domestic Abuse, or if you are concerned you might be, we can help you to:

  • Assess the risk to your safety
  • Make a safety plan to protect you, and anyone else close to you who is at risk
  • Understand your legal rights
  • Gather information that will allow the police to take action
  • Know what danger signs to look out for
  • Rebuild your confidence

During the coronavirus lockdown, Strictly Come Dancing star Hayley Sanderson has created a Bede Choir of survivors of domestic abuse. Working with music professionals, they and Hayley have recorded their version of Britney Spears’ inspirational song ‘Stronger’ and released it nationally. The song aims to raise awareness of the help that’s available for those in abusive relationships, and to raise funds for Bede and Women’s Aid’s work in London and across the country: Bede Choir, ‘Stronger’.

Rapman | Promise #domesticabuse

Leading artist Rapman was commissioned by Comic Relief to raise awareness about Domestic Abuse. This 10 minute video is inspired by the stories of the women he met at the Bede Starfish Domestic Abuse Project. The Promise has had over 12million hits in the first two weeks of its release.

What is Domestic Abuse?

Domestic abuse, or domestic violence, is defined as any incident of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse. In the majority of cases by a partner or ex-partner, but also by a family member or carer, regardless of their gender or sexuality.

Domestic abuse can include, but is not limited to the following:

  • Coercive control (a pattern of intimidation, degradation, isolation and control with the use or threat of physical or sexual violence)
  • Psychological and/or emotional abuse
  • Physical or sexual abuse
  • Financial or economic abuse
  • Harassment and stalking
  • Online or digital abuse

This includes issues of concern to black and minority ethnic (BME) communities such as so called ‘honour’ based violence, female genital mutilation (FGM) and forced marriage. Victims are not confined to one gender or ethnic group.

We can also offer specialist support to those affected by Domestic Abuse who are:

  • Young people
  • Being abused by their son or daughter
  • Affected by mental health issues
  • Without recourse to public funds

What you can do next

  • Get in touch for a confidential chat
  • Join one of our support groups for survivors of Domestic Abuse
  • Arrange to receive counselling

Contact us

If you, or if someone you know, is at immediate risk of physical violence, dial 999.
In a non-emergency, dial 101 to speak to the Metropolitan Police.

Email us and press enquiries: 
Call: 020 7237 9162 

Our office is open from 9.30am to 4.00pm, Monday to Friday. In case of an out of hours emergency, please contact the National Domestic Violence Helpline: 0808 2000 247

Bede Starfish Domestic Abuse Project

Your stories

Meet the brave and inspirational women who broke free of abuse or have survived violence themselves.

They’re sharing their stories, and their strength, to help you to speak out and reach out to your friends.

Read Gillian’s Story

Read Charmaine’s Story

The Starfish Story

Why are we called Starfish? We were inspired by the Starfish story which was part of an essay of the same name by Loren Eiseley. This beautiful poem captures the heart of what we do. We may be a small local service, but helping just one individual can have a ripple effect, benefitting many other lives in the months and years to come.

Starfish Brochure

Click here for our brochure.


Funded by City Bridge Trust and the Henry Smith Charity.