Bucharest, November 2, 2020 – Launched this May, Bright Sky Ro is a free digital tool that supports victims of domestic abuse, providing assistance and useful information to people who are in an abusive relationship or to those who want to help in such cases. The app was developed and adapted for Romania by Vodafone Romania Foundation, in partnership with the Romanian Police (through the Research and Crime Prevention Institute), “Necuvinte” Association and “Code for Romania” Association. Bright Sky RO is available in the AppStore and Google Play store in Romanian, English and Hungarian.
Since its launch, the Bright Sky Romania app was downloaded on 2,281 devices and currently has over 1,000 active users. The most frequently accessed functions of the app are: searching for the nearest support service, filling in the risk assessment form, the online safety guide and searching for general information in the app’s menu (the causes and consequences of domestic abuse, protection orders). The app’s Journal function is also an extremely useful tool for victims, because it helps them collect necessary evidence to document the abuse.
“Bright Sky RO educates people about abuse and its signs. Through guidance and a set of concrete means, we can identify the steps victims should follow when deciding to leave an abusive relationship. Gender violence is an evenly distributed phenomenon across all social classes, therefore, with the help of the Romanian Police, we aim to inform as many people, be they victims or people interested in helping the victims,” declared Angela Galeța, Manager of Vodafone Romania Foundation.
Globally, it is estimated that 30% of women experience some form of domestic violence at least once in their life. Among them, less that 40% seek help to leave the abusive relationship, relying mostly on friends and family and asking for police support only in a few cases. The launch of the Bright Sky RO app was even more necessary as it coincided with the context of the Covid-19 pandemic. The data from the UN Women organization suggests that the majority of countries reported growth in violence cases, caused by isolation, fear of illness or financial insecurity (Source).
In our country, the data supplied by the Romanian Police shows that, during the first 9 months of this year, the highest proportion of offences related to domestic violence were connected to “battery or other types of violence” – 62%, followed by “family abandonment” – 14% and “threats” – 9%.
“The prevention of domestic violence is a priority for the Romanian Police. The app developed through this partnership is a tool that supports victims through offering useful information and the possibility of storing evidence for a potential trial. The recommendations for prevention are easily accessible to all those who want to help or to better understand the phenomenon of gender violence. We express our trust that, by means of this app, we will be closer to those who need us,” declared Ramona Dabija – Manager of the Research and Crime Prevention Institute within the General Inspectorate of Romanian Police.
Between January and September 2020, over 6,472 provisional protection orders were issued, 10% more than in the first 9 months of the previous year. Out of these, 6,383 were issued at the victim’s request, 54 were requested by other people, 5 were requested by NGOs and 30 were requested by other authorized institutions.
The Research and Crime Prevention Institute functions as a direction within the General Inspectorate of Romanian Police which coordinates, monitors and controls the entire activity of crime prevention carried out by the Romanian Police, at central and territorial level.
Starting with 2001, the Institute represents Romania in the European Crime Prevention Network (EUCPN), a crime prevention network that exchanges good practices at European level and promotes crime prevention activity.
More information about the Institute is available at: www.politiaromana.ro/ro/politia-romana/unitati-centrale/institutul-de-cercetare-si-prevenire-a-criminalitatii
Vodafone Romania Foundation is a Romanian non-governmental organization, with charitable status, distinct and independent of the company’s commercial operations, established in 1998. In over 20 years of activity, Vodafone Romania Foundation has funded 1,168 programs, conducted by 745 non-governmental organizations across the country, in the health, education, social services industry. These projects had more than 3 million beneficiaries – children, young and old people, physically, socially, or economically disadvantaged people. So far, Vodafone Romania Foundation invested EUR 31 million in projects conducted by partner non-profit organizations. More details about the foundation’s programs are available at www.fundatia-vodafone.ro, http://jurnaldebine.fundatiavodafone.ro/ and www.facebook.com/fundatiavodafone.