Businesses are renting apartments for women escaping domestic violence

Small businesses are renting apartments to house women escaping domestic violence

Cherie Clonan

Across Australia, small businesses are making huge efforts to support women escaping from domestic violence by donating temporary housing to them.

One such business is Melbourne-based digital marketing training company, The Digital Picnic, founded and run by Cherie Clonan. 

Last month, Clonan revealed that her company, The Digital Picnic had a “secret apartment” which was donated to a not-for-profit who use it to re-accommodate women escaping from domestic violence.

“When we shared that post, 2 large companies following us on LinkedIn [with profits into the millions and billions] reached out to me to ask how they could become similarly involved, and subsequently donated 15 apartments for the same purpose: accommodating victims of domestic violence,” Clonan wrote on LinkedIn. 

“We’re a tiny, tiny business,” she added. “There are still months that we have that don’t yield a profit, but to think this is the impact we made by sharing that we have a “secret apartment”?” 

Clonan attached a forty-second clip of a survivor of domestic violence walking into her new accomodation.

“This video is shared with the consent of both the NFP we work with, the social worker, as well as the beautiful human being who moved into this apartment to escape what was documented in a 30+ page police report and is now healing from a lifetime of trauma, and making plans to study law,” she wrote. 

“I’m sharing this video today in case you happen to stumble upon this in your feed … and think to yourself: I could do this, too.”

Clonan goes on to disclose that the apartment costs her business $21,000 per annum in rent, “…which changes entire lives for the people who live within it to escape from [and heal from] horrific trauma.” 

Image: Cherie Clonan, founder and creative director of The Digital Picnic.

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