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Domestic abuse, rape and sexual violence, FGM, forced marriage, ‘honour-based’ violence, sexual exploitation, modern slavery and human trafficking. Violence against women and girls (VAWG) is the biggest threat facing women in the UK today.

Gender inequality, traditional role models and expectations, male privilege and an imbalance of power between men and women mean men continue to abuse women and girls – violence that is a conscious choice. We all have a responsibility to speak out and act.

Join us and pledge to be a Refuge Shero

Your mission: end violence against women and girls

Refuge Sheroes are heroes who stand up for equality and challenge violence against women and girls. If you’re passionate about ending VAWG, join our exciting new community of Shero campaigners and work with us to build a safe and equal world for women and girls.

Find out more and sign up now

SHERO stands for:


Did you know?

  • 1 in 4 women will experience domestic abuse at some point in their lifetime – someone you know will be affected
  • 2 women are killed each week in England and Wales by current or former partners
  • Almost 20% of the Crown Prosecution Service’s cases relate to VAWG crimes, an almost three-fold increase in a decade
  • More than half of 16-21 year olds have experienced controlling behaviour from a partner
  • Two-thirds of girls reported having experienced sexual attention or sexual or physical contact in a public place

Shockingly, these numbers haven’t changed in decades or, worse still, are rising. 

Myths around VAWG persist which excuse men for their abuse and blame women for the violence.

People still ask why didn’t she leave, why did she stay with him?

What was she wearing, was she drunk, why was she alone?

How about asking why men abuse women and girls?

The media still portrays violence against women and girls as crimes of passion and frequently ask what she did to provoke him.

Fear and shame still prevent women from going to the police or asking for help.

All too often, women are still not believed or are let down by the system.


  Every day, you have the power to choose our better history — by opening your hearts and minds, by speaking up for what you know is right.  
Michelle Obama

Pledge be a Refuge Shero now