A MUM-OF-THREE, who arrived in the town with nothing but her three children and a pram after fleeing honour-based domestic violence, is hosting a special meet up to mark International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

The event, which is internationally known as Chai Day, will be held on Monday, November 25 and has been organised by Shana Begum.

Shana was living in a women’s refuge in a bid to have a better life away from domestic violence.

It was then she was rehoused in part of Moss Bank.

The mum said: “I fled honour based violence from my old town and was rehoused in St Helens last December, just before Christmas.

“I carried with me nothing but the trauma, the fear and pain. I moved into an unknown area where the town’s demographics was mainly white.

“I was scared. I fled from one abuse and might land into another form of abuse. I was very anxious for my family. I even warned them that people might say things to them, but we took a leap of faith.

"And I have to say this community have become my lifeline and I’m now proud to always call St Helens my home.”

Shana who won the Pride of St Helens Family Award, alongside her children Iysha, Isaac and Sammy earlier this month, is now hosting Chai Day at Park Farm ACYP Community Centre to support other survivors of gender-based violence.

She said: "I know how much domestic violence can affect not just the person under attack but their families, and I know how hard it is to find a way out.

"When I shared my story, I had so many people get in touch to say they had been affected too and I just wanted to help.

"I want others to know that it's normal to feel trapped but you aren't, once you look for help you can find it.

"So many people in St Helens have been affected by domestic violence, but especially to mark International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, I decided to host a talk, where I will be baking and serving cakes, chatting with everyone and offering out information.

"Representatives from Chrysalis Centre for Change will be there as well to offer advice on where people can get support.

"You don't need to struggle, you are not alone, there is a community out there for you.

"This is just my way of helping the community who helped me."

Shana’s Chai Day is happening on Monday, November 25 from 12.30pm to 2.30pm at Park Farm ACYP Community Centre, on Kentmere Avenue.

It is free to attend.