First winner of Borders Violence Against Women Award is named

Audrey Laycock receives the first Scottish Borders Violence Against Women Partnership Award from Councillor Donald Moffat, Scottish Borders Council's executive member for community safety
Audrey Laycock receives the first Scottish Borders Violence Against Women Partnership Award from Councillor Donald Moffat, Scottish Borders Council's executive member for community safety

Audrey Laycock has been named the first recipient of the Scottish Borders Violence Against Women Partnership Award.

Audrey, who lives in Newtown St Boswells, was recognised for her role as a volunteer support worker at the Scottish Borders Rape Crisis Centre (SBRCC) since it was established in 2010.

She has also done volunteering to work with children and young people in the CEDAR Groupwork programme (Children Experiencing Domestic Abuse Recovery)

She picked up the award, which is supported by the Scottish Borders Safer Communities Team, on International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on Wednesday.

Audrey has supported many survivors of sexual violence and her nomination describes her deep understanding of the impact not just on survivors but also their friends, families and the wider community.

She was praised as a skilled and knowledgeable support worker and for providing a safe, non-threatening environment where women and girls can talk freely and in confidence.

Audrey also goes the extra mile by arranging peer support meetings for fellow volunteer support workers and consistently attending SBRCC events.

Andrea Beavon, Violence Against Women Coordinator in the Scottish Borders Safer Communities team, said: “We are delighted that a Scottish Borders Rape Crisis Centre support worker has won our first VAW Award.

“The award gives us a way to honour the hard work and commitment of the volunteers at our local centre. Audrey accepted the award in recognition of the work they all do.

“I have known Audrey for over five years and she has been an inspiration to work with.”

Councillor Donald Moffat, Scottish Borders Council’s Executive Member for Community Safety and Chair of the Police, Fire and Rescue and Safer Communities Board added: “Congratulations to Audrey on being named the first Scottish Borders Violence Against Women Partnership Award winner.

“Tackling domestic abuse is a high priority for all partner agencies and the local community, and individuals such as Audrey are playing a vital role in supporting survivors.”

The award looks to build on the success of pioneering and highly regarded Pathway Project which continues to provide vital support for victims of domestic abuse and their children.

International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women runs until Wednesday 10 December.

As part of the campaign, a Reclaim the Night march will take place in Galashiels on Saturday November 28, with those taking part asked to meet at MacArts Centre on Bridge Street at 5.30pm for a 6pm start.