We know that every child, young person and mum/carer is unique and has their own story and their own set of individual circumstances and needs. As a result, all of our work is tailored to best fit the needs of the clients we work with, for more information about tailored support offered by our Community Services DARE2 CYP Team please click here and for more information about tailored support offered in our Refuge’s please click here.

We have a team of highly experienced Domestic Abuse Support Workers and Play Workers offering specialist support to children, young people and their mums both in community based settings and in our Refuge’s.

All of our workers have a wealth of experience in this specialist field and are child/young person friendly, non-judgemental and have extensive experience in delivering tailored support packages to meet the individual needs of each child/young person or mum/carer they work with.

We also understand that one of the most important factors in helping to raise happy, well-rounded and responsible young adults is to ensure that children and young people are supported holistically by their parents, their nursery/school/college and by specialist services. We work in partnership with many other agencies to ensure that we are able to offer a holistic package of support and with mum/carer to help build positive and stronger relationships.

Emotional Support

Emotional support is a key element of the work we deliver. Children and young people who have experienced domestic abuse may have very low self-esteem, confidence and feel very confused about what has happened. They may also feel alone, worthless and scared. They may feel torn between their parents and their relationships with their family may be suffering as a result.

We aim to empower children and young people by giving them the chance to talk about and explore their experiences and allow them to process what has happened, this support helps to build confidence, self-esteem, self-worth and empower them to move on. We do this by:

• Providing a safe space to talk and explore thoughts and feelings

• Providing client led, outcome focused and holistic support planning

• Empowering children and young people to make informed choices by helping them to process their experiences

• Offering advice and support around healthy relationships, consent, staying safe and protective behaviours

• Helping to access specialist services, including counselling

• Ensuring the child/young person’s and family cultural and religious needs are taken into consideration

Practical Support

By providing practical support, families can feel more in control of their situation and better able to make the decisions they need in order to start taking control of their lives and make informed choices. Practical support is usually offered to the mum/carer in order for her to best support her child. Some of the ways we can help include:

- Accessing schools/colleges & early education

- Accessing training, education or employment

- Registering with a GP / Dentist / Health Visitor and access to health care

- Referral into other specialist services (e.g. children’s and family services, mental health services)

- Accessing activities, trips, outings and access to local provisions for enjoyment and leisure activities

- Acting as an advocate with other agencies and professionals such as Children’s Social Care, and Education, etc.

- Helping with parenting, behaviour, routines and promoting health & well-being for the family

Support Planning

Each child and young person referred into our service goes through a thorough in depth assessment to identify needs and support required. Assessments are also completed with mum/carer to ensure we have as much information as possible in order to complete a tailored package of support individual to the child/young person’s needs.

Where appropriate we also work closely with other services and agencies involved in the child/young person life, e.g. education, youth services, early help, family hubs etc.

The Support Plan is reviewed regularly to ensure that the identified needs are being met and is updated where new/differing needs occur. All of our work is monitored for quality assurance and we consult with clients and other agencies and gather feedback in order to improve and develop our service.

All of our paperwork and resources have been developed to be age appropriate and child/young person friendly.

Safety Planning

This is an important element of the work that we do with families that we work with, for some children/young people who have experienced domestic abuse feeling unsafe and at risk is a big factor in their lives and can have a lasting impact.

We work closely with the child/young person to identify where there are issues and ensure they are given the time they need to talk through and process what they have experienced. Part of this process may be putting into place a Safety Plan that identifies risk and gives them a strategy for minimising the risk and staying safe.