The Vesterålen Crisis Centre’s main goal is to provide comprehensive crisis intervention aid for women, men and their children who are victims of violence in close relations. Cf. Act relating to Municipal Crisis Centre Services, 2009.
Recipients of our services shall be given guidance, support and help in contacting other service agencies without having to make appointments first. This entails an open telephone line that is intended to provide guidance 24-hours a day, year round. A daytime service with the same purpose, where crisis centre personnel meet victims of violence on a one-to-one basis to talk with them about their situation. A 24-hour, temporary place to stay that is open year-round. All our services are free, individually adapted and coordinated with provisions from other agencies. This includes follow-up in the re-establishment phase, Cf. Act relating to Municipal Crisis Centre Services, 2009.
The crisis centre is in Vesterålen, centrally located in Sortland municipality.
About the crisis centre
For more than 30 years, the Vesterålen Crisis Centre has been helping women and their children who have been victims of violence within close relationships. During all these years, we have operated the crisis centre as a voluntary association on a non-profit basis. The work to initiate a crisis telephone for women who are victims of abuse and rape in Vesterålen and Lødingen began on 8 March 1981 and went into effect 2 October of the same year. The crisis telephone was open two nights during weekends, and 54 women participated as volunteer shift workers.
The crisis telephone number then (and now) is 76 12 23 30.
The expansion into a crisis centre for women began 1 April 1983 and had round-the-clock, attended telephone service. Volunteers worked shifts at the centre.
In 1991, Lødingen municipality withdrew from the association and the name was changed to Vesterålen Krisesenteret. On 1 January 2008, Lødingen rejoined the association.
In 2010, the Crisis Centre Act went into force and legally mandated all municipalities to have a crisis centre facility for women, men and their children. The municipalities in Vesterålen and Lødingen entered into a cooperative agreement under the provisions of Section 28b of the Act relating to municipalities, with the crisis centre as a provider of services. The crisis centre for men was initiated in conjunction with this. The statute also entailed that the volunteer staff members on the premises be paid standard wages.
Volunteer work currently consists of outreach information activity to schools, clubs and associations, in addition to local events organized in the municipalities. The objective is to inform the public about our services, to place focus on and work to prevent violence in close relationships. In addition, volunteers do work organizing social events/activities for our residents, and performing maintenance work on our building and surrounding grounds.
On 30 August 2011, Vesterålen Krisesenter was declared bankrupt and ceased to exist.
On 1 September 2011 it was founded anew: Vesterålen Crisis Centre.
Since July 2012 we have also provided services to four municipalities in Lofoten: Vågan, Vestvågøy, Flakstad and Moskenes