TODAY is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

To mark the day, an international campaign comprising 16 days of activism against gender-based violence.

West Mercia Women's Aid chief executive Sue Coleman said: “Over the past few months, a light has been shone on domestic abuse.

"We have seen a surge in media coverage and more conversations than ever that focus on violence against women and girls. In these uncertain times, it is vital we keep this conversation going."

Over the next 16 days, West Mercia Women’s Aid will be challenging common misconceptions of what “Love is” – to encourage conversations and to prompt people to reflect on what they consider a healthy relationship to be.

Abusive relationships do not all look the same; sometimes they hide in seemingly acceptable behaviours.

West Mercia Women’s Aid will have an active social media presence throughout the campaign, highlighting the unhealthy behaviours that may go unnoticed in relationships, but which can be signs of abuse.

It is time to turn the spotlight on these harmful actions and broaden our understanding of abuse to support more women to come forward and end the hurt.

Alongside this campaign, information on how to access confidential help if you are in, or have left, an abusive relationship will be widely shared.

National lockdown has added to the isolation that those in abusive relationships often feel, and at times access to help may seem impossible.

West Mercia Women’s Aid offer services and support to communities and individuals and can be contacted via a 24 hour helpline or online through LiveChat (9am-9pm).

West Mercia Women’s Aid 24 hour Helpline:

Herefordshire, Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin: 0800 783 1359

Worcestershire: 0800 980 3331

LiveChat is available 9.00am – 9.00pm, Monday – Friday at