Advice on the EHS fund
What is the EHS fund (sexual abuse fund)?
The EHS fund was set up to provide survivors of sexual abuse in childhood or youth who still struggle to cope with the impact of this abuse with assistance through the Ergänzende Hilfesystem (EHS / additional assistance system). Survivors who were sexually abused within the family or in an institution can also apply for specific benefits and support services through this programme.
The programme can provide benefits worth up to 10,000 euros (up to 15,000 in individual cases). It is subordinate to other funding that could be provided by the OEG (Crime Victims Compensation Act), through the health insurance companies, through social benefit programmes run by the district authorities or municipality. The aid system is intended to supplement to the social benefits and it sets in when these options have been exhausted.
It is important that there is a connection between the benefit that has been applied for and the sexual abuse that was experienced, and proof must be provided why the specific benefit will help to alleviate the long-term effects of the violence.
It is also advisable to describe the assistance you are applying for as precisely as possible, e.g. by providing an exact description, by giving the name of the therapist or the therapy centre. It also makes sense to include a cost plan which details the expense type and amount.
Examples of benefits that can be applied for include:
- Grants for therapy sessions (e.g. if the number of therapy sessions paid for by the patient’s health insurance has been exceeded or the insurance company has vetoed payment for the therapist).
- Grants for recognised therapies, such as occupational, music, ergo, art and animal therapies.
- Grants for the training (and possibly also the acquisition) of a PTSD assistance dog.
- Funding for measures aimed to enable the survivor come to terms with her experience, e.g. costs associated with trips to the scene, to therapy sessions and to counselling meetings, or costs in connection with the use of services offered by support groups and organisations.
- Financial support to purchase medical/therapeutic aids and treatments, e.g. physiotherapy, ergotherapy, baths, massages, speech therapy, wheelchairs, prosthetic limbs, hearing aids, etc.
- Grants for support with official appointments and court visits, e.g. on-going assistance of individual support (provided the costs are not covered by other centres or institutions).
- Financial support for training courses and qualifications, e.g. school leaving certificates, apprenticeships, university courses or retraining programmes.
Where can you get help?
Our two centres in Kiel and Plön are official advice centres for the Fonds Sexueller Missbrauch. Our staff will be happy to help you complete an application form and can answer your questions. This can be done on the phone and in person.
You can also call the “Hilfetelefon Sexueller Missbrauch” (sexual abuse helpline) on 0800 22 55 530. Staff there are specially trained to answer questions concerning the fund. This service is also free of charge.