On the 25th of November 2020 the Croatian National Call Centre for Victims of Crime (NPC) -116 006 opened a 24h helpline, that provides support to victims and witnesses, that is a part of the system for violence prevention and protection of victims of gender based violence. The 24/7 helpline was opened as a part of a project called „Stop violence against women and domestic violence – There is no justification for violence“ initiated by the Croatian Ministry of Labour, Pension System, Family and Social Policy and financed by the European Social Fund.
The National Call Centre for Victims of Crime helpline continues being free of charge and anonymous. Callers from anywhere in Croatia can get support 7 days a week, including weekends and public holidays, 0-24h in Croatian and English. At the same time, the NPC line has become a national helpline for victims of gender-based violence. The NPC team was strengthened with 5 new employees so that adequate support could be provided regarding to the new working hours. Since the beginning of the year, the NPC team has also started holding online lectures on gender-based violence through the Zoom platform, which were streamed on the Victim and Witness Support Service’s Facebook page with aim to inform the public about available support. By June, a total of 15 lectures on various topics had been held.
- Violence in romantic relatinships of youth (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/01/11/lecture-violence-in-romantic-relationships-of-youth/)
- Emotional abuse in intimate relationship – tactics and consequence (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/01/18/emotional-abuse-in-intimate-relationships-tactics-and-consequences/ )
- Imposing of protective measures laid down by the Act on the protection against family violence (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/01/26/imposing-of-protective-measures-laid-down-by-the-act-on-the-protection-against-family-violence/)
- Secundary traumatization of helpers (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/01/29/secondary-traumatization-of-helpers/)
- Physical punishment of children (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/02/05/corporal-punishment-of-children/)
- Violence against
- Financial compensation for victims of crime (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/03/12/financial-compensation-for-victims-of-crime/)
- Gender – based online violence (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/03/19/gender-based-online-violence/)
- ,,That to do if someone I car for is a victim of domestic abuse?” (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/03/26/what-to-do-if-someone-i-care-for-is-a-victim-of-domestic-abuse/)
- Media coverage of victims of crime (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/04/02/media-coverage-of-victims-of-crime/)
- Violence against LGBT population in Croatia as an example of hate crime (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/04/15/violence-against-lgbt-population-in-croatian-as-an-example-of-hate-crimes/)
- Specific characteristics of provoding emotional support on the phone line (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/04/29/specific-characteristics-of-providing-emotional-support-on-the-phone-line/)
- Victims rights (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/05/18/victims-rights/)
- Frequent callers (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/05/28/lecture-frequent-callers/)
- Violence against persons with disabilities (https://pzs.hr/en/2021/05/28/lecture-frequent-callers/)
- As a part of the project „Stop violence against women and domestic violence – There is no justification for violence“, trainings were organized in several cycles for professionals who meet victims of violence in their work. The lecturers / educators are the Executive Director of Victim and Witness Support Service Croatia Miren Špek and the Coordinator of the National Call Center for Victims of Crime Maja Štahan.
- Since the beginning of the new working hours, 24 hours a day, the number of calls on the line has increased, which will certainly be further contributed by the national campaign that began in early June and will last for the next two years (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bS5Nhtx16iM; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=db53HRULnhY )
- The NPC team, in addition to providing support via the 116 006 helpline, also started providing individual counseling for victims from the area of the City of Zagreb and Zagreb County. Individual counseling is provided by mental health professionals.
- Victim and Witness Support Service Croatia is a partner on the PREVICT project (Promoting Rights of Victim in the EU). Promotional materials (infographics, brochures, posters) were produced in January, and the PREVICT campaign began in February. In Croatia, the main role during the promotion is played by 116 006 helpline, as well as the promotion of citizens to recognize the rights they have as victims and to actively seek help and support in exercising them. As part of the campaign, promotional materials were sent to a number of institutions in order to inform all stakeholders about the available support that victims and witnesses can receive on the free and anonymous 116 006 helpline.
REFERENCE CENTERS IN OSIJEK, VUKOVAR, VARAŽDIN
From the beginning of the year, Reference centers in Osijek, Vukovar and Varaždin started with the implementation of several new projects and continued the activities of current projects:
- “PEPA – PREVENTION – EDUCATION – SUPPORT – ACTIVATION”. The aim of the project is raising the quality of life of the elderly.
- The project “Network of Support and Cooperation of Victims and Witnesses of Criminal Offenses” created with the aim of providing assistance and support to victims and witnesses of criminal offenses, in counties where victims and witnesses support departments have not been established, continues for a new three-year period.
- Within the project “Youth Activation Network” in which we participate as partners, we conducted several focus groups and held two round tables, in Vukovar and Osijek. The aim of the project is to involve the academic community and decision makers in the processes of open dialogue with youth in order to improve the quality of life of young people in Croatia.
- Activities on the project “Cross Violence” implemented by the White Circle Split, in which we participate as partners, have continued. We participated in the development of an interactive map, which contains contacts of organizations and institutions to which victims can turn for help and support.
- We participate as partners in the ,,Superseniors II” project implemented by the Vukovar Women’s Association. The aim of the project is to include the elderly in the life of the community through the non-institutional organization of daily activities with the aim of improving the quality of their lives.
- We started with the implementation of the project “Inform yourself and prevent violence!”.
- Activities continued on the InfoComPWDs project – Information and Communication: Cornerstones of justice for victims of crime with disability. We conducted several interviews with experts with the aim of gathering information on the challenges faced by people with disabilities who are also victims of a crime.
- As part of the ,,Say No to Violence, Say YES to Respect! ”Project, we conducted a comprehensive research on youth on the topic of violence.project ” Stand up for victims ”