A NEW digital company is linking up with a local charity to help raise the issue of domestic abuse in Swindon.

The franchise for Big Local App Swindon was recently bought by Lee and Michelle Stoddart and now they are looking to use the service to help promote Swindon Women’s Aid.

Big Local App allows people to easily look at local news and businesses on their smartphones, and Swindon Women’s Aid will be given prime position on the service.

The charity has been chosen as it is close to the hearts of the two directors of the company, especially Michelle, who was a victim of domestic abuse in a previous relationship.

The 36-year-old of Taw Hill said: “At the time I didn’t know about the services which Women’s Aid provide. If I had known I could have reacted differently and made better decisions.

“It was back in 2008 so the police were not as informed on the topic as they are now either. I had a small child and obviously it was really hard, but it would have been a lot easier if I had known about Women’s Aid at the time.”

The charity offers a place of safety and support to women and their children who have been subjected to abuse in the home.

Michelle is hoping by putting Women’s Aid on the app it will not only give users an easy way to find out about what they do, but also help raise awareness about the issue of abuse.

She said: “I still think there is a belief that abuse is just physical but it is not. It can be emotional as well.

“My former partner knew just when to stop before turning violent so other people would not notice as well. Hopefully, the more people who see the Women’s Aid App then the more people we get a bigger understanding of abuse and what it is.”

As well as creating the app, 10 per cent of all the sign-up fees will go to Women’s Aid and the charity’s logo will also be put on all promotional material.

Lee, 36, said: “As well as working with Women’s Aid we are helping to promote local businesses.

“We have been speaking with some of the thousands of businesses in Swindon to get them on board, along with some bigger national names.

“It is available on people’s iPhones and Android devices but will soon be on all devices.”

For more information visit www.biglocalapp.com