Municipal Gender Violence Emergency Shelter Centre (CMAU-VM)

Emergency residential shelter service for women, and their children, experiencing gender-violence situations. This service provides attention 24 hours a day, 365 days a year (366 on leap years), with a multi-disciplinary team that made up of social-education, psychology and family-welfare professionals, as well as the centre's management team.

There are 10 rooms with a maximum capacity of 27 places for stays of no longer than one month. Access is through referral from the following organisations: the Care, Recovery and Shelter Service (SARA), the Barcelona Social Emergency Centre (CUESB) and the ABITS Agency's Social-Educational Care Service (SAS). 

This service was partly funded in 2019 and 2020 with funds from the State Agreement against Gender Violence, granted by the Ministry of the Presidency, Relations with Parliament and Equality (Secretary of State for Equality).

What does the CMAU-VM offer?

  • It provides a secure place offering respite, emotional containment and support, where the woman or person concerned is able to reflect on their situation and on the various alternatives available to them, and where they can take the necessary decisions concerning their future.
  • 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 that for the women and their children, or adolescents (or anyone else accepted into the shelter) have their basic accommodation, maintenance and health-care needs covered.
  • It provides people of all ages who are accepted there with educational and psychological care as long as their emergency shelter lasts, in addition to the social and legal assistance provided by the Care, Recovery and Shelter Service (SARA) during that period.
  • It complements the investigation carried out by the Care, Recovery and Shelter Service (SARA) for making an initial joint assessment of the situation that, enables the team of professionals to take the appropriate decisions over the proposals for the individual, and any other family members concerned, as well as the intervention required, according to the wishes expressed.

Target population
Women, and their children, who meet the following requirements:

  • They are residents of Barcelona.
  • There is a situation of gender violence when they access the shelter programme, they have separated from the person abusing them and they are fleeing from violence.
  • They meet the access requirements established in the gender violence emergency shelter's technical criteria, defined by Barcelona City Council's Department of Feminism and LGTBI Affairs.
  • They are of legal age (18 years old or over).
  • They freely declare their wish to enter the shelter service, recognising and accepting its operational regulations.
  • They intend to enter a process of liberation and recovery from the violence they have experienced and to embark on a work plan established between them and the SARA shelter service's professional team.

Irrespective of whether or not:

  • They are registered residents.
  • Their legal papers are in order (foreign women).
  • They have reported the situation of violence they have experience to the police.
  • They live with their assailant.