THE Scottish Borders Safer Communities Team and the Violence against Women Partnership are asking for donations of surplus mobile phones and chargers during January for use by vulnerable women.

The Phones for Safety campaign 2013 aims to provide phones to vulnerable women who are using specialist domestic abuse services and need access to safe phones.

They will be used locally by the Domestic Abuse Advocacy Support Service, Children1st Domestic Abuse services, Border Women's Aid and Scottish Borders Rape Crisis Centre.

Phones are often used as evidence in criminal proceedings or are monitored by abusive partners, leaving women at risk and unable to access support. Access to a safe phone plays a crucial part in supporting women and providing them with a lifeline.

Councillor Donald Moffat, Executive Member for Community Safety, said: "We appreciate that at this time of year many people have just got a new phone. Please donate your old phone so that we can recycle it and help to keep an abused person and their children safe."

The Phones for Safety campaign will run throughout January and donations can be handed in to Council headquarters in Newtown St Boswells during the month.

What is needed: - any model of phone, any age, using any network - phones to come with chargers wherever possible - sim cards removed, as these will be replaced with new ones How you can donate: - hand in your old phone (and charger) to Scottish Borders Council's Headquarters, for the attention of the Administrator, DAAS Service, Safer Communities, Scottish Borders Council HQ - email (and mention if you have collected a number of phones from your family, friends or co-workers as these can be collected) The new Domestic Abuse Advocacy Support (DAAS) Service can be called on 01835 825024 for confidential information and support.