Lucy’s Update

Welcome to our August Newsletter – I was hoping to write something about us all enjoying the summer holiday weather, but it has been a bit of a washout! At least the sun has been out the last few days and I hope that you have managed to spend some quality time with friends and family. Here at Alpha Vesta, we do not provide any of our online training during the August month, due to the school holidays and holiday season, so we are joining you in taking a well deserved break, but we are straight back to business as usual in September.

We are still keeping busy during this time, and I am very pleased to confirm that our ‘Breaking the Cycle Program’ will be running for another year in partnership with DWP until the summer of 2024. The original pilot project came to an end earlier this year, and we have learnt so much and evolved the program to what it is today.

Department of works and pensions

The program is made up of 6 learning modules which are emailed through one session at a time and progressed through at an individual’s pace.  Alpha Vesta will support clients through this progression and stay connected to discuss how they are doing before moving onto the next module.  Each session incorporates a handbook and video recordings as well as grounding exercises to help clients relax and focus on the session.

In addition to the above we also offer the following where necessary to support individuals through the learning modules:

  • 1:1 Mentor support to assist progression through the program
  • Weekly online drop-in group

The criteria to join the program is as follows:

  1. This program is for those that have experienced domestic abuse at some point in their life either in an intimate relationship or family relationship.
  2. This program is for those in receipt of a working age benefit.
  3. This program is for those living in an Essex Flexible Fund area / Supported by an Essex Job Centre.
Mentoring Program
Lucy Whittaker

Clients can be referred via their DWP contact or they can self refer by emailing us at where one of our team will make an initial call to discuss the program in more detail.  For more information please click on the poster image above to access our flyer. 

We will see you all back to business as usual in September.

Best regards

Lucy Whittaker

Founding Director and Lead Trainer of Alpha Vesta CIC

Caroline Judd

Introducing: Caroline Judd

Hello! I am Caroline Judd, Operations & Office Manager for Alpha Vesta. My background and experience sits within Professional Services, mainly working for KPMG as an Operations Manager up until 2017.

I love to be creative and decided to set up a small business making handmade cards and gifts as well as creating handwritten wedding signage and table plans, but to help pay the bills I also worked as the Office Manager for Brentwood Chamber of Commerce for 5 years. The was a wonderful role that enabled me to work locally and provided the opportunity to meet so many people across the Essex community. This is where where I was introduced to Lucy and her work.

I have now been with Lucy and the Alpha Vesta team for nearly two years. I help to manage and facilitate the online training sessions, which are fully funded for those living and working in Essex, and with the content regularly being updated it doesn’t matter how many times I hear it, I pick up on something new.

I have oversight of all Alpha Vesta Projects​ and help to create and implement operational processes to ensure we are able to monitor and report on progress and deliverables.

One of the things I love about working with Lucy and Alpha Vesta is being part of a wonderful team focused on awareness, prevention and early intervention to help break the cycle of domestic abuse. I have been privileged to work closely with some inspiring and amazing people already and look forward to the new challenges and opportunities Lucy will send my way!

I know Karen shared some fun facts last time (what kind of person cannot cook an egg!?!?) so I’ll just remove the word fun from my list and attempt to think of something to share………..

  • I love DIY and currently renovating our house, so husband panics every time he comes home to see what I have attempted next!
  • Love netball
  • Milk intolerant
  • Both my children are already taller than me at 16 and 12, as I am only 5ft 3″
  • Love a good boogie

All the best & all the rest


Dates for the Diary

New dates are continually being added to our Eventbrite page which you can follow here

 Enhanced Awareness: Domestic Abuse & Eating Disorders

Enhanced Awareness: Domestic Abuse & Eating Disorders

Wednesday 6th September, 11am – 12pm

 Enhanced Awareness: Domestic Abuse & Pets

Enhanced Awareness: Domestic Abuse & Pets

Wednesday 6th September, 2pm-3pm

Male Culture & Domestic Abuse Webinar

Male Culture & Domestic Abuse Webinar

Thursday 23 November 10am-11.30am

Domestic Abuse in the News – links

Victim of domestic abuse praises officer after abuser is jailed

As a recipient of funding from Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex and having worked closely with Essex Police, this article reflects the positive steps being taken to support those impacted by domestic abuse. It was interesting to read comments from the ‘victim’ about her experience and the support she has received, but importantly to see that there is an acknowledgment that the impact of domestic abuse continues after convictions.

Cost-of-living crisis has added more barriers to leaving their abuser

In partnership with Women’s Aid, the Home Office is attempting to combat this barrier through a new scheme to support victims in leaving their abuser. The fund will provide a one-off payment of £250 to individuals experiencing abuse, and £500 if they have children. In today’s financial climate, the amount of money being offered is unlikely to make a substantial difference for domestic abuse survivors who cannot leave an abuser due to a lack of resources and this article explores some of the issues.

Digital Abuse – 3 in 10 Women+ Have Experienced This Form Of Abuse – Here Are The Signs To Look Out For

It is no surprise that given how much of our lives are now intertwined with technology the rise of digital abuse. This is an area of particular interest that we will be looking to explore in more detail given the importance of early engagement, educating and empowering people to recognise the signs, understand preventative measures and build confidence to signpost people to support services.

Long-term Impact Feedback Survey

It is important for us to continue to develop robust training which is meaningful to people from a variety of different sectors and communities. We are very grateful to all of you that take the time to complete the short questionnaire that is shared after each of our sessions.

However, it is also important to us to understand the long lasting impact of our training and how this learning is being used within the workplace and community. Therefore, for those that have completed the training within the last 6 months please can we ask you to complete this short survey link:

National Support & Help

National 24hr Domestic Abuse Helpline 0808 2000 247 For women and children experiencing domestic abuse

Men’s Advice Line 0808 801 0327 For men experiencing domestic abuse

RESPECT 0808 802 4040 For those concerned that they may be using abusive behaviours

NSPCC Helpline 0808 800 5000 If you are concerned about a child

Samaritans 116 123 For those struggling in terms of their mental health and feeling in crisis

NCDV 0800 970 2070 free, fast emergency injunction service for survivors of domestic abuse

Essex Regional Support & Help

Alpha Vesta 01245 791281 For employers and employees concerned about a staff member

Compass 0330 333 7 444 Compass is being delivered by a consortium of established domestic abuse support agencies including; Safe Steps, Changing Pathways and The Next Chapter. The aim is to provide a single point of access for callers to speak with a trained member of staff who will complete an assessment and ensure contact is made with the most appropriate support service.

The Change Project 01245 258 680 Committed to preventing conflict in relationships and working with both perpetrators, victims and their children.

Alpha Vesta’s Collated National & Regional Support Services

click here to access document

CPD Provider
Lottery Community Fund
brentwood Chamber
Essex Partnership
Police, fire and crime commissioner for essex
Essex Community Foundation

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