Pierre launched the Institute ISG in January 2014 near Paris as the first multidisciplinary center for women victims of violence. His objective is to act quickly and discreetly to prevent situations from escalating. Women are received for free and without question and the center is a one-stop shop for all the support they need to take in charge of every aspect of the situation of violence they are dealing with. This includes legal support (in filling a complaint for example), consultations by medical staff and psychologists, and social support to find solutions on housing, phones, etc. Pierre has chosen to integrate the center inside a public hospital (Poissy-St Germain en Laye Hospital) near the entrance to avoid stigmatization. This option ensures women’s complete anonymity and preserves confidentiality about the reason for their presence.
As a first step, Pierre has developed innovative tools to enable women to comfortably speak up, with nurses specifically trained at the welcome desk of the Institute, and talking groups where women can express themselves in a secured, empathic and caring environment. There is no need to repeat their stories, all the information is shared between the team of various professionals who are engaged to solve women’s situation. Indeed, to ensure the service of the Institute, Pierre has mobilized 150 volunteers, including 26 permanent ones, representing various professions. For Pierre, collaboration and breaking the silos in care are key success factors. Each case is discussed by a multidisciplinary team that sets up a protocol adapted to each situation and defines the right care and priorities. With the agreement of the women, medical confidentiality is not a rule internally at the Institute, in order to better share information between the team engaged around a victim and optimize the best way to take care of her.
To avoid the frequent breakdown in care of victims, the Institute also offers original solutions of sheltering. Pierre has tied special relationship with local community partners to find housing solutions, and even offer phone loans enabling women to always stay with the center discreetly. To extend support outside the Institute when needed, specific prices are negotiated with professionals. A network of 100 psychologists, that normally take 70€ per consultation, receive women coming from the Institute ISG for 30€, and only 2€ for those in precarious situation.
In order to increase his impact, Pierre also acts on prevention and seeks to intervene closer to potential beneficiaries, mobilizing a network of volunteers in charge of detection across the territory of Yvelines. This network, initiated three years before the creation of the Institute, is based on nearly 2500 local correspondents in the fields of health, justice, national education but also simple shopkeepers and citizen organizations) in daily contact with women. For the past four years, Pierre trains them on the identification of risks and how to "ask the question." He also offers various practical guides and toolkits to help them identify the socio-health signs, and has set up a hotline specifically for volunteers to answer questions and allow them to alert the Institute when needed.
The building of a detection network has enabled Pierre to meet all the actors of the problematic and identify the gaps and dysfunctions in the existing system. His observations have led him to go beyond direct support and develop "practical advocacy" actions to impact the ecosystem of care for victims of violence beyond the walls of the Institute. As a result, he regularly defines new cooperation protocols with institutions and local associations. For example, he has worked directly with the courthouse of Versailles on a protocol where he and his team are sworn to declare a case of violence directly with the prosecutor to speed up the process with justice. He has also developed links with the College of Lawyers and Police Departments to facilitate access to representatives specifically aware on how to take in charge situations of violence. By working in strong cooperation with a network of specialized association, Pierre is able to find housing solutions for women who need it in a matter of hours. Lastly, he has an agreement with administrative institutions (like the Prefecture of Yvelines) to temporarily regularize undocumented immigrant women to ensure their presence on the territory during the support process of the Institute.
In order to meet the exponential demand of women to access the Institute’s services, Pierre has started to work on the national development of his idea, while reinforcing the economic model through new public and private national partnerships and income generation experimentations (for example, by raising awareness within companies). His development strategy is based on supporting local initiatives to open new ISG Institutes and guiding them in maintaining the practices he has developed for this model. Considering the extent of domestic/sexual violence across the French territories, Pierre has prioritized eight cities (Toulouse, Marseille, Nantes, Rouen, Lille, Lyon, Chambery, Grenoble). Pierre relies on local project leaders to manage the replication process. To accompany this organic growth, Pierre also plans to develop a strategy of influence at a national level, based on cooperation protocols with institutions already deployed in the pilot area (prefecture, sub-prefecture, courthouse) that have demonstrated impact. In his pilot, Pierre worked with the most important actors in Paris, which facilitates the setting of new protocols of cooperation around the country. Lastly, Pierre is exploring opportunities at an international level, with market studies in Ivory Coast, DRC, Mali and Senegal, with an angle of care more targeted at female genital mutilations.