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Maximising financial teachable moments for women affected by family violence


Research Project Survey now available

Family Violence and Money Problems: What can help you recover financially?

WIRE invites participants to complete this survey  or download flyer.

Maximising financial teachable moments for women affected by family violence

Why are we doing this new research? 

WIRE have been having important conversations about family violence against women, and the Royal Commission into Family Violence (2015) has propelled changes to a critical issue in our society. However, one area that is not talked about much is the financial aftermath of family violence and how financial abuse (or economic abuse) is a major tactic of perpetrator violence.

Between 80-98% of women seeking family violence services have also experienced financial abuse - alongside physical, sexual and emotional abuse. Financial insecurity is one of the major barriers to leaving a violent relationship. Many victim/survivors face on-going financial hardship that carries on long after the violent relationship had ended. Many face bills, joint debts that may not be theirs, as well as continuing abuse by perpetrators through the courts. Many face poverty, homelessness, unemployment or under employment and may rely on income support.

Leaving a violent relationship takes on average $18,000 and 141 hours,” ACTU Report 2017, on SBS News

Women are already financially disadvantaged by gender-based inequalities: for example, they may have not received financial education, or have had less opportunities to practice money management if they work within the home. They may not know where to seek financial advice and information, or indeed trust that information – which is often not relevant to their lives or priorities. These barriers are even harder to overcome for women due to age, race, gender identity, sexuality, culture and ability. There are gaps in services and support systems through which women fall through, and our research wants to find out more about what these gaps are, and how to fill them.

Aim: To provide appropriate and timely financial capability and literacy education and support that can improve victim/survivor’s financial recovery and stability, no matter which stage of their journey they are on.

How: WIRE is asking women with lived experience to share their stories and ideas about:

  • When are the good “moments” to provide financial capability education and support? 
  • What skills, education and information and support services they need? 
  • How should this be provided? 
  • What can get in the way of accessing and taking part in these programs?


WIRE wants to inform and influence the design and delivery of Financial Capability Programs, Financial Support services and Products that women affected by family violence need at all stages of their journey to financial recovery: from preventing and protecting finances, through crisis, to early recovery to building longer term financial stability and security.

Project Update:

Between August and November 2017, researcher Nilmini Fernando has already spoken with nearly 60 women in Victoria about what their experiences have been.

What's next?

If you were unable to participate in one of our many focus groups, we would love you to take part in the survey you may like to download our flyer  to forward to your networks.

The findings of our Teachable Moments Research Report will be launched alongside a national promotion campaign to stakeholders in June 2018.

For more information on 'Teachable Moments', contact Researcher Nilmini Fernando:

Email: or Ph: (03) 8326 7110

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