Left Behind Poster


This short film focuses on migrant victims and survivors of domestic abuse who are subject to the No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) condition in the UK. 

Thousands of victims of domestic abuse are falling through the cracks of the system. Many women are unable to enter a women’s refuge as they are not eligible for housing or other social security benefits. Women and their children are vulnerable to homelessness and exploitation; and can be locked in new dangerous situations or be driven back to abusive relationships. 

Left Behind tells migrant victims’ and survivors’ stories in their own words, with context from MP Jess Phillips (Shadow Minister for Domestic Abuse and Safeguarding), Nazir Afzal OBE, Nicole Jacobs (Domestic Abuse Commissioner for England and Wales), as well as representatives from charities, including Southall Black Sisters, Latin American Women’s Rights Service and Karma Nirvana. The film advocates a change in government policy to support the victims of domestic violence with No Recourse To Public Funds.


  • Director Eylem Atakav, Karoline Pelikan
  • Running Time

Show Info


Eylem Atakav, Karoline Pelikan

Eylem Atakav, Karoline Pelikan

Karoline Pelikan is a documentary filmmaker and cultural manager. Her films, awarded by the Peruvian Ministry of Culture and international cultural organisations, focus on intimate portraits, gender violence and human rights issues and were screened at major film festivals. Karoline is founder of EmpoderArte, a collective of women that creates safe audio-visual spaces for women and non-binary artists across Peru. She teaches film workshops for women and creates distribution opportunities for underrepresented communities and filmmakers. 

Eylem Atakav is Professor of Film, Gender and Public Engagement in the School of Art, Media and American Studies. She teaches courses on women and world cinema; gender and Middle Eastern media; and documentary. She is the director of Growing Up Married – an internationally acclaimed documentary about forced marriage and child brides in Turkey; and co-director (with Karoline Pelikan) of Lifeline, a short documentary that reveals the reality of working in the frontline of the domestic abuse sector in the UK during the COVID-19 pandemic.