Support for Domestic Abuse

DA Programmes Currently Facilitated by Children’s Centres


The Freedom Programme examines the roles played by attitudes and beliefs on the actions of abusive men and the responses of victims and survivors. The aim is to help women to make sense of and understand what has happened to them.

The programme lasts for either 10 weeks or a shorter 6/7 week is currently being introduced The sessions are 1.5 – 2 hours and each week focuses on a different abusive persona/ tactic, such as The Bully, The Headworker or the Jailer, and goes through the tactics they use, beliefs that cause these behaviours and how they affect us

The Freedom Programme also describes in detail how children are affected by being exposed to this kind of abuse and very importantly how their lives are improved when the abuse is removed.

There are also sessions and discussions on warning signs and the behaviour of a good, non-abusive partner.


Hope2Recovery Programme is a gender neutral Domestic Abuse programme which can be used to support anyone who is still in, or has recently left an abusive relationship.  The adult only programme helps participants understand how their negative and distorted thought processes are a result of their experiences of coercive control and other aspects of domestic abuse. It also provides participants with techniques to challenge their negative thought processes, enabling them to develop self-confidence and assertiveness, which supports their integration back into society and exploring their full potential.


Topics covered in the 6 week online or in room programme are:

  • What is abuse?
  • The impact of abuse on the family
  • The effects of abuse on children and parenting skills
  • How to develop positive relationships with your children post abuse
  • Healthy relationships
  • Action planning towards abuse free lives
  • Vicarious Trauma

The Domestic Abuse Recovery Toolkit Programme

The Domestic Abuse Recovery Toolkit Programme (DARTK) has been running across the UK within Domestic Abuse Services for over 20 years and enables parents/children to move forward from the trauma of experiencing and/or witnessing domestic abuse.

It helps participants understand how they were prevented from leaving the abusive relationship and the thinking patterns they developed as a method of managing the risk.  It provides practical strategies to help increase their confidence and self-esteem, which enables them to re-evaluate for themselves how they might move forward with their lives and make better-informed choices about their future and for those of their children, should they have them.

Topics covered in the online or in room 12 week Adult programme include:

  • What is abuse?
  • Coping and the consequences on our psychological well-being
  • The effects of abuse on children and on parenting skills
  • Self-esteem and affirmations and the power of positive self-talk
  • Anger, conflict and assertiveness
  • Boundaries and trust
  • Making mistakes
  • Setting goals
  • Healthy relationships

Children and Young People Domestic Abuse Recovery Toolkit

The Children and Young People Domestic Abuse Recovery Toolkit is suitable for any child or young person between the ages of 8 – 16 years who have experienced or witnessed domestic abuse and are able to take part in a group.  In addition to being Trauma Informed and using cognitive behaviour therapy, it also uses person-centred therapeutic principles, that’s strengths based, focusing on resilience and emotional regulation. Children and Young People are facilitated each week to take ownership of their own recovery. This programme has been written for children who are no longer with the abusive parent.

Topics covered in the 8 week CYP programme include:

  • How abuse affects our thinking
  • Self-esteem – what is it?
  • Who’s my family?
  • Talking positive
  • Ways to handle difficult feelings
  • Healthy relationships and trust

Freedom for Children

This can be facilitated either within a small group or in 1:1 work, topics included in the programme mirror the adult Freedom but resources include items such as emotional cards and puppets.