Barcelona City Council has a variety of residential resources for attending to women and their children experiencing gender violence.

In cases where the level of risk is high or there is a risk that the assailant could locate and threaten or intimidate her or assault her, her children and/or anyone she is staying with (family members, friends, work colleagues, etc.) the City Council offers shelter.

Priority is given to placing them in public shelter flats or houses or a shelter run by specialist organisations; however, when these services do not have any places available and a place is needed urgently, the Council has to place these people in hostels, hotels and boarding houses.

Depending on the needs of the person who has to be sheltered, the situation they are in and the need for professional presence in the course of their treatment, the following types of shelter resources for gender violence are available:

Emergency shelter

The emergency shelter and care services in cases of gender violence facilitate short-term emergency shelter for women subject or who have been subjected to gender violence and, if applicable, to there children in order to ensure there personal safety. These resources provide a 24-hour service, 365 days a year and have a multidisciplinary team covering social and psychological aspects.

The Municipal Centre for Emergency Shelter in cases of Gender Violence CMAU-VM) is the emergency residential shelter service. Access is through referral from the Care, Recovery and Shelter Service (SARA), the Barcelona Medical and Social Emergencies Centre (CUESB) and the ABITS Agency's Social and Educational Care Service (SAS).

In recent years, this residential service has partly been financed by funds from the State Pact against Gender Violence, awarded by the Ministry of Equality, Secretary of State for Equality and against Gender Violence.


  • It provides a safe breathing space with support in emotional control  for the woman or person being treated.
  •  It helps women so that they can properly explain to their children, if they have any, why they are there and how this decision will affect them.
  • It ensures the basic accommodation, maintenance and health needs of the persons being sheltered are covered.

Long-term shelter

This is a long-term residential (24/7, 365-days a year care service which aims to offer a shelter space for people who have experienced violence and who do not have a family or social support network, or who cannot use it for safety reasons.

The long-term shelter houses and flats provide a safe physical and emotional environment and comprehensive care of the needs of the persons they shelter. Individual and group work is encouraged so they can recover their autonomy, self-esteem, personal worth and a satisfactory mother-child relationship.

Shelter in medium- and high-autonomy flats

This is a temporary independent shelter service to continue the process initiated by the shelter services with a view to continuing the work plan with the woman and her children, as well as other dependent persons in the family unit, and facilitating personal autonomy, independence, and social and workplace integration with the support of professional specialists.

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