Skip to main navigation Skip to main content

Family and Domestic Violence Financial Assistance Program

Support for people on temporary visas who are experiencing domestic and family violence.

QUICK EXIT

Australian Red Cross’ Family and Domestic Violence (FDV) Financial Assistance program is now open for individuals seeking support and service provider referrals.

The program is available to all people on temporary visas, or with uncertain visa status, experiencing family and domestic violence, in need of financial support.

This page is also available in:

Arabic | Bengali | Chinese (simplified) | Farsi | Hazaragi | Hindi | Malay | Nepali | Punjabi | Russian Sinhalese Spanish | Tamil Tagalog | Urdu

Downloadable and shareable flyers about Family and Domestic Violence Financial Assistance Program are available in these languages:

Arabic | Bengali | Chinese (simplified) | English Farsi | Hazaragi | Hindi | Malay | Nepali | Punjabi | Spanish | Tagalog | Urdu

I am on a temporary visa and in need of immediate help

If your health or safety is under threat now, call 000 immediately. Crisis and ongoing support is also available from these services:

  • 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) National sexual assault and domestic violence helpline. A confidential online WebChat is available here.
  • 13 11 14 Lifeline crisis support and suicide prevention
  • 1800 55 1800 Kids Helpline

How can I get support?

You can apply online.

If you need support to complete your application, you can download a step-by-step guide. The guide is also available in Amharic Arabic | French | German | Hindi | Malay | Mandarin | Nepali | Oromo Portuguese | Sinhalese | Spanish | Swahili | Tagalog | Tamil Tigrinya

Before applying read the information below about what you need to ask for support. Submitting all the information needed will help us respond to your need as quickly as possible.

Domestic and family violence is an ongoing repeated pattern of behaviour intended to hurt, damage, or control you. It is not always physical.

Domestic and family violence happens when one person in a relationship hurts another or makes them feel unsafe, and is a repeated pattern of behaviour

It can happen in any kind of relationship:

  • boyfriends, girlfriends, partners, husbands, or wives
  • ex-partners, ex-boyfriends, ex-girlfriends, ex-husbands, or ex-wives
  • carers or paid support workers
  • parents, guardians, or other family members
  • adult children
  • other people you live with or see often, whether inside or outside the home.

Abuse does not have to involve physical violence or hurt to your body to be domestic or family violence. It can cause fear, stop you living as you want to, or force you to behave in way you do not want. 

It can include:

  • psychological or emotional abuse
  • sexual abuse
  • financial abuse
  • spiritual abuse
  • social abuse
  • legal abuse
  • reproductive control
  • neglect.

For more information on Family and Domestic Violence, you can visit 1800respect.org.au or call 1800 737 732 (1800 RESPECT).

The program can support people who are:

  • not Australian citizens or Permanent Residents, and
  • experiencing or at risk of family and domestic violence, and
  • experiencing financial hardship.

Support we are able to offer could include any of the following:

  • financial assistance
  • financial assistance with short-term support to assist with referrals to other organisations
  • financial assistance with longer-term support (up to 3 months) where you are not already working with a family violence service provider.

Our caseworkers will talk with you to better understand your situation, the support you need, and how we can assist.

When you are applying for help, you will be asked to provide some documents.

  • If you are receiving support from another organisation (for example, a family and domestic violence organisation), you and your caseworker will only need to complete the Red Cross Referral Form and include it with your application.
  • This form will ask for your permission for Red Cross to contact you, and check that you understand and agree to how we receive and use your information.

To help us make a payment, you will be asked to provide:

  • Visa status such as your passport number or Immi card number.
  • Bank documents such as a bank document. You can provide a screenshot of a bank account only if they show your name, account number and address. Do not provide a credit card statement.
  • If you don’t have a bank account in your name that is safe for you to access, you are still able to submit an application and Red Cross will call you to discuss.

If you are uncertain or don’t currently hold a visa, you are still able to submit an application and Red Cross will call you to discuss your situation.

Red Cross does not share your personal or visa information with the government.

Please do not send any documents with your personal information via email. All our forms and documents ask you to advise us the safest time and way to contact you.

I need help to apply

If you need an interpreter to help you apply you can ask for this before you apply online. If you need support initially, you can contact the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS) on 131 450, stating your preferred language and ask to be connected to Red Cross on 1800 733 276.

If you need help to make an application and don’t have anyone else that can help you contact Red Cross. Phone 1800 RED CROSS (1800 733 276) between 9.30am and 4.30pm AEDST, Monday to Friday, or email us. WA callers are encouraged to call the enquiry line before 2.30pm AWST or visit the Perth Red Cross Office. Please do not send any documents via email.

The contact you make with Red Cross is confidential. We keep the information you provide with your application safe at all times.

The Red Cross privacy & consent form is available to download in the following languages: Arabic | Bengali | Chinese (simplified) | Farsi | Hazaragi | Hindi | Malay | Nepali | Punjabi | Spanish | Tagalog | Urdu

Additional resources that may be helpful

Support services for men who are experiencing family violence, and information regarding behaviour change programs, is available here.

I am a service provider

The Family and Domestic Violence Financial Assistance Program has now commenced taking referrals for financial assistance.

How do I refer a client?

Agencies are able to assist a client self-register online. This is the safest and quickest way to get confidential information to Red Cross including documents about visa status and bank documents, if possible.

The application process also requires the Red Cross Referral Form to be completed by the agency with the client. This form includes a Privacy Collection Notice and declaration by you as an agency that the client understands and consents to how you are sharing their information.

If you support or are applying on behalf of a client to apply, do not use your agency email address in the application.

If it is unsafe for the client to use their current email address, please support them in opening their own email address. If that is not possible, please contact us on 1800 RED CROSS (1800 733 276) or email us and we will let you know how to send us client referral information that will protect their data, privacy and safety.

The program is set up to support people who are:

  • not Australian citizens or Permanent Residents, and
  • experiencing or at risk of family and domestic violence, and
  • experiencing financial hardship.

Red Cross will verify eligibility in order to provide financial assistance.

If you and your client are unable to apply online or are experiencing difficulties applying, please contact us. Phone 1800 RED CROSS (1800 733 276) between 9.30am and 4.30pm AEST, Monday to Friday, or email us.

Red Cross welcomes the federal government’s $6.5 million investment through the Department of Social Services to provide financial assistance to people on temporary visas who are experiencing domestic and family violence.

We know from our work across Australia that people on temporary visas, or those with uncertain visa status, face specific challenges in reporting and accessing support services for family and domestic violence. The government’s investment will allow us to provide immediate and short-term support to alleviate the impacts of family and domestic violence for people on temporary visas.

Under the year-long pilot, working alongside family and domestic violence agencies, Red Cross will provide up to $3000 in financial assistance to those eligible, to help cover expenses such as accommodation, food, and medical care. The pilot will also support referrals and, where specialist agencies are unable to help, provide short-term casework support.

In addition to providing direct financial support to people on temporary visas, the pilot will build an evidence base to help shape future support for temporary visa holders experiencing violence. 

Red Cross will continue to work closely with local and nationwide family and domestic violence agencies and other services to ensure that support reaches to those most in need, no matter where they are, as quickly as possible, and that we ensure people are linked and referred to relevant local services, wherever possible.