Domestic Programme Fund: bidding process

The fund is for voluntary organisations working to protect victims and end the abusive act of forced marriage; view the last successful bid list.


The Domestic Programme Fund (DPF) provides funding to charities for small projects in the UK. The Forced Marriage Unit (FMU) recognises that protecting victims and ending forced marriage can only be achieved if partners across government, non-governmental organisations and statutory agencies work collectively.

The DPF promotes this joined-up approach of working by encouraging and enabling voluntary organisations to contribute even more to the wide and varied ongoing work to protect victims and end the abusive act of forced marriage. This has been demonstrated even more than ever this year with £150,000 again being made available. You can view the list of successful projects that have been funded for 2013/14 below.

Bidding process

The DPF bidding round for 2013/14 is now closed. Please check this page next year for details on how to apply the next round of funding.

Successful projects 2013 to 2014

Ashiana Sheffield – Bridge the Gap

This project brings together members of the community, organisations, young people, and Peer Mentors in order to challenge negative opinions on FM and change ideas within communities. A play will be developed in partnership with Sheffield Health, Social Care Community Development Team (CDW) and students from a chosen school. The play will depict what may happen to a young person who is forced into marriage and the range of feelings a person may experience.

The play will be produced and used as an interactive tool on school websites and other online services such as NSPCC, Sheffield Futures and Get Connected.

AVA in association with Animage Films – The Dancer

AVA and Animage Films are collaborating on the creation of a short animated film addressing forced marriage. The film aims to raise awareness among potential victims, perpetrators and the general public. It will provide a useful educational tool that can be utilised by specialist organisations in their work with young people, schools, as well as statutory and voluntary sector organisations.

We anticipate that these films will stimulate community and public discussion in the UK and beyond, especially engaging people who may be unclear about the key differences between a forced and an arranged marriage. It is has imperative that further filming of scenes now needs to be incorporated into what will become the final version, so that it fully reflects the impending changes from the introduction of new legislation brings.

Karma Nirvana – Practitioner Roadshows

This project aims to further build and consolidate on the success of previous annual roadshows, by developing bespoke events on the practicalities of the criminalisation of forced marriage. With the Government’s firm commitment to criminalise forced marriage, it is imperative that the law is widely promoted to enable victims and potential victims to be equipped in effectively using the new legislation.

The project also looks to increase professional confidence and awareness of the legislation, by ensuring that all practitioners who may potentially work on forced marriage cases are appropriately trained to support victims. Raising awareness of the new law amongst professionals is just as crucial as other groups, so this work fully complements the wider role of the FMU in delivering outreach. Karma Nirvana has an extensive existing database of professionals who are keen to continue working with them, following their success in delivering events to over 200 agencies over the last few years.

Respond – Am I Being Forced to Marry?

The project will help with the provision of information on forced marriage to those people with learning disabilities, by ensuring equal access to information. There will also be an increased level of information and advice for professionals and community members, including awareness of the new legislation and particular implications it will have on family members of people with learning disabilities.

An updated version of the easy-to-read booklet ‘Am I Being forced to Marry?’ will be published the project website will also be updated to include advice and signposting for professionals supporting people with LD at risk of forced marriage. Five films will also be created for the website, containing interviews with a range of experts in the field of learning disability and forced marriage.

Rights of Women – Empowering Survivors, developing providers: a workshop project

This project will work directly with women survivors or those who at risk of forced marriage, as well as individuals who interact with support services and organisations set up to assist them. The project will provide a better understanding of the law, legal rights and remedies and how to effectively use them.

It will also provide a further opportunity to raise awareness of the recent and forthcoming changes to the availability of legal aid for family law and immigration law cases, by providing local service providers with the knowledge and skills to support survivors to rebuild their lives. Crucially, through dialogue with survivors, the project will enable us to feed into both local and national debates about the development of policy and service provision on forced marriage.

Southall Black Sisters – Consolidating support for repatriated victims of forced marriage

The project will help to consolidate the work that has been carried out over the last year to help with the re-settlement of repatriated victims of forced marriage. The work will include providing information, advice and advocacy to the victim, once they have been collected from the airport and placed in safe temporary accommodation. The support work involves assistance in making applications for permanent housing, reporting crimes, forced marriage protection orders, divorce or annulment, counselling, benefits, friendship networks, educational and work opportunities.

Crucially, SBS will also provide advice and assistance to other organisations across the country on how to help and support repatriated victims in their local area. The project also builds upon the work in developing training, support and protocols at Heathrow Airport with the FMU, so that this can be replicated at other airports and ports of entry across the UK.

Stockport Without Abuse – Free2Choose

This project aims to educate individuals about having a voice in their own futures pertaining to marriage and relationships. This approach will inspire them to use their knowledge, not only in their personal lives, but to become ambassadors and discuss and debate the subject with their families and peers.

The project will create a safe, creative and innovative environment where young people can acquire knowledge about consent in marriage, and the difference between an arranged marriage and a forced marriage. It will also address both the historical and cultural ideologies of forced marriage and discuss the tensions that this may bring when considering the human rights of all individuals.

Tees Valley Inclusion – “Time 4 Change” campaign

The overarching aim of this project is to not only raise awareness, but also campaign against forced marriage across five large Unitary Authority areas across the Tees Valley region. This will be delivered through educating and informing community based partners/networks about these issues, whilst building route ways for support through a formal partnership network that will be created and shared by the project.
The “Time 4 Change” campaign and programme will engage role models and visible dignitaries (Mayor, MPs, Football players etc) who have demonstrated their commitment to speak out against forced marriage. The campaign will also look to engage community and faith networks in tandem, ahead of new legislation and develop sustainable community networks for victims which links into the on-going support available from the HALO project.

The Sharan project – Harnessing Change

This project will develop and implement a highly effective network of Ambassadors, aimed at helping to challenge existing attitudes to forced marriage in pre identified target communities - a variety of online resources on relevant key topics will also be developed. A comprehensive Ambassadorship Programme will initially be created at a local level, with the view of creating a much wider programme of work across the UK.

A select number of established public figures and distinguished leaders from across media, business, and the public and third sectors will be recruited, which will support a number of debates on forced marriages and further strengthen key messages against this harmful practice.

It is envisaged this work will ultimately extend to an international level and go a long way towards drawing attention to the instrumental work of the UK government in tackling forced marriage.

West of Scotland Regional Equality Council – Campaign to engage Imams and Mosques in the fight against Forced Marriage

This project will work with Imams across Scotland to discuss the issue of forced marriage. The main aim of the work will be to encourage further debate on this issue, highlighting the fact that the Muslim community of Scotland also have a responsibility to the community in preventing this from happening in the future.

The project will create a shared statement with the Imams on how best to address forced marriage – it will also be launched in English, Urdu, Arabic and Bengali and delivered during Jummah (Friday) sermons across Scotland. Ultimately, it is hoped that this will demonstrate to the community that Imams do take forced marriage seriously and that they are approachable on this issue.

Published 12 December 2012