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Promoting good outcomes for children in need who experience domestic violence

Report, case studies | March 2008

This paper is one of a series produced by IPC to support the commissioning of children in need services in Wales, as part of the Better Outcomes for Children in Need Programme.

It was published in response to demand from local authority commissioners in Wales for research and best practice findings looking at how to promote good outcomes for children in need where there is domestic violence. It provides a starting point for commissioners seeking to develop their understanding of ‘what works’ for these children and their families.

The paper highlights increased evidence and awareness of the impact of domestic violence on children, and examines the national context. It outlines tiers of intervention need for children experiencing domestic violence, and the different types of service or intervention that should be available. The importance of assessing risks to children from domestic violence is discussed, and current and recent themes in professionals’ responses to domestic violence are identified. Interventions by a range of providers focused on three groups - survivors of domestic violence and their children, parents and children still living in circumstances of domestic violence, and perpetrators of domestic violence - are highlighted. Case studies for each group are offered.

There is consideration of indicators of good practice for services, and the paper concludes with a summary of how support can be provided at different levels of need. There is a summary analysis of what characterises effective interventions and what this means for commissioners.