Skip to content

COVID-19 realities, domestic and family violence and culturally and linguistically diverse women

About this research

Domestic and family violence (DFV) is a major human rights and public health issue in many communities around the world.

Domestic violence is a term that typically refers to abuse against an intimate partner or ex-partner and family violence is a broader term that refers to abuse in a range of family and family-like relationships. One of the most common forms of violence against women is domestic violence perpetrated by an intimate partner. And while men and women experience violence, women are more likely than men to experience violence from an intimate partner, and with more severe consequences.

Domestic and family violence is prevalent but preventable.

Globally and nationally, we know that the COVID-19 pandemic isolation measures contributed to widespread unemployment and financial stress, increases in anxiety and depression, alcohol and other drug use, and an increase in DFV with Culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities including migrant and refugee women being particularly vulnerable.

The SHAKTI project is being undertaken in collaboration with Curtin University and our community partners and together with participants we will explore how COVID-19 isolation measures impact migrant and refugee women experiencing DFV. Together with participants and a Community Advisory Group, the SHAKTI research team will co-design a culturally safe, self-help and safety program that will be delivered to migrant and refugee women experiencing DFV. Through the SHAKTI project, we aim to identify critical time points for support to CALD women who experience isolation and provide them with avenues to form safe support networks through the program and provide an opportunity where CALD women’s voices, experiences and hopes are heard, respected and documented.

Chief Investigators

Professor Jaya Dantas (lead), Professor Donna Chung, Dr Jonathan Hallett & Associate Professor Sender Dovchin


SHAKTI is funded by an intervention grant from Healthway

Healthway logo

More information

Would you like to know more about the SHAKTI project?

SHAKTI is not a direct service provider so for emergency assistance, please contact:

Emergency 24/7: 000

Lifeline: 13 11 14

1800 Respect: 1800 737 732

Women’s DV Line: 9223 1188 or 1800 007 339 (country)

Men’s DV Line: 9223 1199 or 1800 000 599

Kids Helpline: 1800 55 1800

For general support, please contact:

Anglicare WA: 1300 114 446

Beyond Blue: 1300 22 46 36

Centrecare: 9325 6644

Communicare: 9251 5777

DVassist: 1800 080 083

Entry Point: 1800 124 689

eheadspace: 1800 650 890

Ishar Multicultural Women’s Health Services: 9345 5335

Relationships Australia WA: 1300 364 277

Women’s Health & Family Services: 6330 5400