Over the past year more than 46,000 referrals have been made to Lancashire Victim Services, the free county wide service commissioned by Lancashire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Andrew Snowden, providing emotional support, information and practical help to all victims of crime, regardless of whether it has been reported to police.

Deputy PCC Andy Pratt MBE was joined by colleagues from Lancashire Constabulary and their Witness Care Unit to meet with Lancashire Victim Services (LVS) as part of a regular performance review to look back over the past 12 months and assess the impact the service is making across Lancashire.

While not all of those referred to LVS chose to take up the offer of support when contacted, over 7,600 were supported with 4,500 Lancashire residents receiving long term support.

Expert support is available following any type of crime with specialist teams available to support young victims, victims of rape or sexual assault and victims of domestic abuse with recent feedback describing the service provided as “life changing” and “being a rock” to the people supported.

Claire Powell, Area Manager for LVS said: “We are really proud of the work we do to support local people when they need us most.

“Our teams are really passionate about providing the best possible help and advice to support anyone affected by crime to cope and move forward.

“The feedback we receive from the people we support is so rewarding and means so much to our staff who often help people through extremely difficult circumstances.

“I would encourage anyone who needs support following any type of crime to contact us, we are here to help.”

Deputy PCC Andy Pratt MBE added: “The passion LVS put into supporting victims of crime is clear to see and I have no doubt about the positive impact this work making across the county.

“While our top priority for Lancashire is to fight crime and deter criminals it is also crucial that we provide the best possible support to people who do fall victim to crime.

“The Commissioner has invested an additional £2.5m from his budget on top of the grant he receives from the Government to ensure that LVS’ specialist teams can provide face to face, expert emotional support and practical help to victims of domestic abuse and sexual violence.

“On top of this the Office has secured a further £3.9m in additional funding which is supporting healthy relationships programmes in Lancashire schools as well as work with perpetrators to break the cycle of abuse.”

Anyone affected by crime can contact Lancashire Victim Services via the live chat at lancashirevictimservices.org, by calling 0300 323 0085 or by emailing info@lancashirevictimservices.org.