Our vision is a world in which women and children lead safe,  violence-free, equal lives so that they can flourish and actively contribute to society. We do this through our mission of saving and changing lives, by working with women who experience domestic abuse to be safe and take control of their lives, and women who have committed crime or are at risk of offending to break the cycle.

Our approach is holistic and centred on the survivor, working with them to develop a safety and support plan that responds to their needs and empowers them, on the often long journey to recovery from the trauma of their experiences.

Our founders' message

In 1998, women’s organisations together with criminal justice and statutory agencies in the Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham (LBHF) came together to respond to the fact that out of the 2,000 domestic abuse incidents reported in the area in 1996, there were only 10 convictions.

As a direct result, our founders Bear Montique and Beryl Foster OBE set up Advance Advocacy and Non Violence Community Education, known as Advance, to provide a new service delivery response to survivors in the community, by improving advocacy and access to support in a coordinated way. At the same time, they set up our sister organisation Standing Together Against Domestic Abuse (referred to as Standing Together) aiming to deliver innovation in the strategic and operational response of agencies working with survivors, their children and perpetrators, resulting in the Coordinated Community Response (CCR).

Bear Montique and Beryl Foster OBE, working within London domestic abuse services and refuges since the 1970s.

Our values

Listen and support

We listen without judgement, supporting women and girls, each other and our partners, to openly express themselves, better understand their own experiences and options available to them.


We empower women and girls to make their own informed decisions so that they can lead the lives they choose and we respect their choices. We empower each other by sharing information and expertise, so that we can take initiative and make decisions which improve our services, respecting each other.


We champion new, innovative and breakthrough ideas, while attentively managing risks, through our teams’ passion for continuous learning and thriving on tackling new challenges. We give each other the tools, inspiration and support we need to excel.


We collaborate inside and outside the organisation to maximize our shared knowledge and bring greater impact to one another and our beneficiaries. The solutions we deliver are the sum of our collective work, perspectives, specialisms and experiences. Our teamwork inspires us to make our best contributions, promotes communication and celebrates our shared achievements.

Quality and Accountability 

Our knowledge, expertise, collaborative and proactive approach lead to high quality service and accountability that continuously sets us apart. We anticipate and manage complex challenges with agility, while always considering the impact of our decisions, making a tangible difference for the better.

Our timeline

Advance is founded by Bear Montique
& Launch of Coordinated Community Response (CCR) and Standing Together by Beryl Foster OBE
Advance co-location at the Police stations
First Specialist Domestic Abuse Court (SDAC) in Hammersmith & Fulham
Development of the Advance Domestic Abuse Advocate (led to IDVA Model)
Launch of the Minerva Service Model
Development of the Impact service, and a Whole Justice Approach
Launch of the Minerva WrapAround Approach
Launch of the London Diversion service

Our Strategy 2018 – 2022

1 To reach more women and their children experiencing domestic abuse and other forms of violence or involved in the criminal justice system, by providing independent, non-judgmental support and advocacy through new referral pathways and improved access to services.
2 To engage with the community to raise awareness of violence against women and girls, to ensure our services meet their needs and gain support of our activities.
3 To maximise our impact and public accountability through the processes and practice that ensure we are an efficient and well governed charity, which delivers high quality services to women and children, their families and local communities.
4 To Build strong financial fundamentals in response to challenges in funding environment and ensure long lasting sustainability.

Our annual reports

2021 Annual Report
2020 Annual Report
2019 Annual Accounts
2018 Annual Report & Accounts


Our confidentiality policy states that we will not discuss your case with any other agency without your permission. However, if there are concerns relating to Child Protection issues or if you are at serious risk of harm, we would need to disclose this information to the relevant agencies to help safeguard yourself and your children.

We will only share information that is necessary and will do so in a respectful and safe way.