THE-KEY to unlock new lives nationally

A Lancashire business which supports professional people rebuilding their lives after suffering their partners’ drug, alcohol or domestic abuse is to roll out a national programme.

THE-KEY is a community interest company helps victims get back on the ladder after their life-changing ordeal.

Experts from domestic violence agencies throughout the UK and Vivien Blackledge, project manager at the Domestic Abuse Service, in Blackburn warned last year that it was middle class women and men who were increasingly falling victim to domestic abuse as the effects of the recession took its toll.

Sandy Marshall, who founded the community interest company in 2012, said in the past domestic violence had always been associated as a stereo-type problem associated with deprived areas.

“But times are changing,” she said. “I think often professional people don’t actually realise they are in an ‘abusive situation’ as stereo typically it happens to other people and not to them.”

“When they do realise and make the step to get out of the situation they are often lost and unsure of what they can do. Their confidence and self-esteem takes a huge knock and people in this situation can often resort to anti-depressants to help them go to work and function each day.”

Sandy added that making the decision to leave the situation took huge amounts of courage and soul searching.

“From our research these people do not know where to turn to for help and support,” she said. “They need to rebuild their life and be confident, self-assured and they need help, guidance and support.

“In the course of our work we have spoken to numerous professionals - solicitors, accountants, executive directors - who have been in this situation. What has become abundantly clear is that when they wanted real help and support they did not know where to turn.”

“The working/professional person is hard to reach and they often suffer in silence even after a separation or divorce as they do not know where to find support.

THE-KEY offers ‘real life’ actual programmes which help move the person onto a new positive phase in their life.

MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale Tim Farron said: "The Key is a fantastic local community interest company that is doing amazing work and I am delighted to support them." For more information please call Sandy Marshall 07711 121008 or email