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Refuge established for battered men

Switzerland's first refuge for men and their children is to open next month in the northern canton of Aargau.

It has been established by the private VeV organisation, but its exact location will be kept secret, VeV's chairman, Oliver Hunziker told journalists on Friday.

Financing for the Zwüschehalt (stopover) refuge is assured for a year, but the initiators hope to bring in more partners and also to raise money from the public.

Hunziker said the number of men who were victims of domestic violence was on the increase, but they were not taken seriously. They did not dare speak of their experience, although they needed help.

So far, most state aid has gone to women's organisations, he said.

The new centre intends to offer time out to fathers under stress as well as a refuge for men and their children who flee the family home. Women victims will also be catered for.

VeV has groups in different parts of German-speaking Switzerland. Its purpose is to help parents – especially those who are separated and divorced – to create the best possible conditions for themselves and their children.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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