All photos by Vera Cloe Zebrowska Photography


Who is Ewelina Maria Chin?

Ewelina Maria Chin is the founder of a new charity, Healed Scars, based in Scotland with a UK-wide reach.

Ewelina is originally from Poland and has lived in the UK for many years. Her life took a dramatic turn during her second marriage, going from being a successful accountant and happy new mother to experiencing severe abuse.

Her young son and her were sent to a refuge centre where she suffered from PTSD, anxiety and finally Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. With her son’s well-being in mind she worked on regaining hope and a way to be financially independent.

For over two years, she completed many online courses from motivational and career coaching to becoming a mindful art play-worker for children. She gained educational trainer and motivational coach qualifications, passed PVG vetting and re-designed her life and career path.

The global pandemic made her realise how important it is to break the silence and raise awareness about trauma and abuse. The numbers of victims of domestic abuse during Covid-19 were horrific and she couldn’t stay quiet. She also wanted to do it in a different way: to bring hope, relief to female survivors, to build these ladies up.

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What is the mission of your charity?

Healed Scars empowers women who have been affected by domestic abuse to lead independent lives free from fear and abuse. We do that while keeping the voice of survivors at the heart of our services: everything we do is a response to their self-identified needs.

We highlight and tackle the issues which result from domestic abuse. We support and reflect diversity and promote equality of opportunity.

We promote cohesive inter-agency responses to domestic abuse and develop partnerships to work towards a society in which domestic abuse is no longer tolerated.

What services do you offer and to whom?

We focus on a large group of women in the UK who already have left their toxic relationships and support them to never step back there. We do so by providing a wide offer of motivational, empowering, healing, trauma, and coaching programmes. At the moment, we offer online self-esteem coaching (free for charity members) first and third Friday of the month 9:15-10:15, planned mentoring  group sessions with our toxic relationship coaches, assertiveness training online and a group self-confidence training online.

The United Kingdom has an extensive range of specialists and advocacy agencies available for abused women. Some areas have developed special programmes in support of women from specific minority groups.

We are grateful for having all the hives, support groups and community circles. They are doing amazing work in helping victims of abuse to escape from their perpetrators, since leaving the place of abuse is never easy for the victim of the abuse. It is challenging and it takes courage. However, life after leaving the place of abuse and trauma that victims found the most challenging.

Yes, it does take courage to leave the abuse, but how do you live after you leave abuse? How do you stay strong, calm and confident? How do you accept the consultation with the NHS trauma specialist booked in 16 months due to a long queue?

How can you rest at night with a feeling of reassurance that you and often your children too will make it onwards? How do you believe that it is possible to start over again? Who can you talk with and how to reach help with the financial struggle after the escape?

Finally, how can you not continuously doubt the undertaken decision?

What inspired you to found Healed Scars?

It was my new life, the one I could only dream of at that time: the life after leaving the place of abuse that I found the most challenging.

For many years I felt guilt and shame because of what had happened to me. Now I am ready to leave my comfort zone: my silence. I feel strong to share my pain and my gain with others. I am working on  empowering women to feel strong enough too so they will never give up on their future free from fear and trauma.

My goal is to bring hope to abuse and trauma survivors, to help them to carry on with their lives, to reassure them they are not alone, to encourage them to open up and talk freely without fears of being judged and an overwhelming feeling of constant self-blame. I want us to explore how  valuable we are. I want us to know that it is okay to put ourselves first and that it is our ongoing right to say “no” when we feel so. I want us to explore and strengthen our inner fundamental confidence and assertiveness so we will never again feel like controlled and suicidal wrecks!

Our goal is to encourage other survivors to carry on with their lives, to reassure them they are not alone, to motivate them to open up and talk freely without fear of judgment and self-blame.

We are here to use our voice how much we are worth and that it is okay to say “no” when we feel so. Together we can empower and inspire other girls, strengthen our fundamentals of confidence and assertiveness.

If you had to name the values which guide you as a person, which would they be?
INTEGRITY. Know and do what is right.

RESPECT. Treat others the way you want to be treated

HOPE – To look forward to with desire and reasonable confidence. To believe, and trust.

FREEDOM – The power to exercise choice and make decisions without fear of judgment

What did you adopt of the Scottish culture that has shaped your way of working ?
The Polish mentality and perception about domestic violence and abuse are not as supportive as in Scotland. The past decade media and public authorities have started raising awareness about the trauma, violence, and abuse but it is still far from appropriate levels.  I am afraid that back in my country the stigma would not allow me to stand back on my feet as quickly as here.
What did you learn from running Healed Scars that makes your services to your clients even more valuable?

In my professional life, my passion is creating an interpersonal coaching experience for individuals and companies with dedication and knowledge. Being an integral part of the charity makes me empathetic and understanding person, who is free of judgment and always willing to support others. I support my clients from my experience of being as a Healed Scars representative, a soft skills coach, and as an ordinary woman.

At the present, I offer webinar sessions for both individual and corporate clients but building a high-quality soft skills education platform is my main goal.

Who would you like to connect with?

We would like to connect with other charities, women’s aid organisations across the UK, women social media volunteers. We are open to proposals from therapists, counsellors and life coaches, especially if fluent in Czech, Lithuanian, Latvian, Slovakian, Polish, Russian, Hungarian, Urdu or Arabic.

When was the last time that you were touched by a client’s reaction to what you helped them with?

Almost every day someone contacts me and shares their life journey with me, many of them cannot wait to come and start the healing treatment.

Any exciting news about your organisation?

Yes! The Empowerment Wall Calendar 2021 is a campaign designed to support women across the UK who underestimate their strengths and rights to be free of abuse and rise again. We will publish over 1000 A-4 calendars, and distribute them to over 200 outlets across the UK.

Each month of the calendar features a picture of one of the 12 empowered female survivors who have rebuilt their lives and won their battle with  their traumatised past. Twelve women who believe again in a safe future and their own ability to love and be loved again. Twelve women who have managed to become winners despite the high volume of mental/physical abuse they have previously endured. Twelve women who have become mentally, physically, emotionally, socially and financially free of fear and doubts. Twelve brave women who are ready to share their powerful and successful stories.

We will publish 2,000 copies of the 2021 A4 wall calendars by mid-October. Over 200 copies will be displayed in local outlets with a message to those who may not be allowed to have it at home, to those who underestimate themselves and are too scared to escape from the toxic relationships.

1,800 copies will be available for sale of £10.00 per calendar. All money raised from the sale will be reinvested into an online mental health support project. We will give assignments to ten accredited and registered professionals such as life coaches, counsellors, holistic advisers etc. These professionals will receive payments for their services and will offer further support for survivors, which will be free of charge to them.

It will be quality training and support in the form of group and 1-2-1 online sessions dedicated to women, victims of abusive relationships. These online sessions will be safe, supportive, and inclusive.

How can people reach you?

People can like us on Facebook. 

Please visit our website.

If you enjoyed Ewelina Maria Chin’s interview, you will probably like Yasmina Kasmi Bakkali’s as well!
This interview was conducted by Lucie Cunningham from Tell Them Well Communications in October 2020. Lucie is a freelance editor, copywriter and translator with many years of community project management. She has lived in France, England, The USA, the Netherlands and is currently based in Scotland.