Cathy PressBal Kaur HowardCarolCheryl

Cathy Press

Cathy is based in Suffolk, but travels widely across the UK and internationally with Awareness Matters running commissioned workshops and training for multi-agency professionals, counsellors/psychotherapists, from both statutory and voluntary organisations on issues related to domestic violence & abuse.

Cathy has 24 years experience as a therapist and is a registered MBACP Senior Accredited Counsellor and Supervisor with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy adhering to the BACP Code of Ethics. Cathy values working therapeutically with both clients and supervisees and enjoys the unique learning process that therapy provides. Cathy has a particular interest in the traumatic impact of domestic and sexual abuse.

Cathy Press

Cathy is Chair of Trustees for the charity Compassion – addressing domestic abuse and providing long term support to victims and families. To learn more about the work of Compassion please view the short film below or visit  

Cathy is an experienced facilitator for therapeutic group work for survivors of domestic and sexual abuse and has provided group supervision for teams of facilitators and therapists for many years. Cathy has managed various specialist therapeutic service provisions including Southend Women’s Aid, SOS Domestic Abuse Projects and Lighthouse Women’s Aid, Ipswich.

For many years Cathy sat on the DV Hate Crime Scrutiny Panel addressing domestic abuse prosecutions for the Suffolk Crown Prosecution Service and continues to provide consultancy for organisations.

Cathy is enthusiastic and passionate about her work in the arena of domestic abuse, but when not working Cathy enjoys time with her family, walking, gardening, travel and catching up with friends.

Bal Kaur Howard

Bal has been advocating on the issues of BME women and men on domestic violence, honour based crimes (Forced Marriage & Female Genital Mutilation) and Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) since 2008.

Bal has developed and delivers training for front-line practitioners in Health, Social Care, Police, Education and the voluntary sector throughout England and Wales in the subjects of Domestic Abuse, Risk Assessment, Honour Based Abuse, Forced Marriage, Female Genital Mutilation, Radicalisation / Extremism, Modern Day Slavery and Addiction.

Bal was employed by Suffolk Constabulary for 7½ years as a Project & Performance Officer for Honour Based Violence (Forced Marriage, Female Genital Mutilation) in a countywide Domestic Abuse Unit and for 3 years she was based within the CSE / Child Investigation Abuse Unit.

Bal Howard

Bal was born in India and was brought to Britain aged one. She was forced into marriage at the age of 17 in Darlington and forced to sponsor her husband for permanent residency in the UK.

Bal is keen to share her experiences, being the voice of the victims and survivors who experience crimes rooted in the name of honour, giving practical and emotional support. She raises awareness with agencies to reduce the isolation of victims and to increase reporting. In Bal’s words “I refuse to take my past into the future and regard myself to be an empowered survivor- my darkest past is now my greatest asset”.

Bal was a volunteer with Karma Nirvana from December 2007 to December 2008 after reading Jasvinder Sanghera’s book “Shame”. Her experience is also featured in Jasvinder’s 2nd book “Daughters of Shame”.

Bal has been nominated twice at the IKWRO True Honour Awards (2012 & 2014) and she completed her Award in Education and Training Level 3 (formerly PTLLS) in 2014.


More Information About Carol To Follow



Cheryl is a qualified Counsellor with a BSc. (Hons) in Integral Therapeutic Counselling, based in South East Essex. With 11 years voluntary experience in domestic abuse and general individual therapy, Cheryl is also a trained facilitator of the Freedom Programme, Escape the Trap, Who’s in Charge? and Stronger Families Programmes. Cheryl also provides administrative support for Awareness Matters.

Providing administrative support for Awareness Matters can be like living in the fast lane of a motorway co-ordinating the various trainings on the calendar. What I like most about this supporting role is the enthusiasm, dedication and care taken by the team to provide the best training experience possible for all the practitioners who attend.


When not providing administrative support for Awareness Matters, Cheryl has a private practice in Eastwood, Essex and is a voluntary counsellor and supervisor for the Open Adult Counselling Service.

Cheryl believes that specialised training for therapists & practitioners is essential in providing an holistic approach towards helping and empowering individuals to reach their full potential. To support this she has a special interest in incorporating creative approaches when working with survivors, and integrating mindfulness practice to enhance awareness for personal wellbeing.

When time permits Cheryl is an enthusiastic gardener, and enjoys textile art, flower arranging, and baking.