Each child or young person affected by Domestic Abuse (DA) will react in different ways and display a range of emotions and behaviours. When a child or young person makes a disclosure it is highly likely that:

  • A number of incidents have occurred
  • The child/young person wants the DA to stop
  • The child/young person trusts the person to whom the disclosure has been made

At a basic level a child or young person affected by abuse needs:

  • An outlet – somewhere to safely relax, have fun and make sense of the world and receive positive reinforcement
  • To offload – someone who will listen to them and help them find ways of addressing their feelings and emotions
  • Support – practical and emotional help, reassurance and empathy

Some practical ways to support a child or young person could include:

  • Training all staff and governors on abusive relationships, sexual violence and gender stereotyping, indicators of abuse and Child and Adult Protection Procedures
  • Educating all children and young people on healthy relationships, respect, conflict resolution, bullying and challenging gender stereotyping through PSE lessons, cross curricular activities or in assemblies
  • Display posters on support agencies and helplines for young people around the school
  • Create thematic display boards on healthy relationships
  • Consistently enforce non–acceptance of violence and model nurturing , respectful behaviour
  • Provide positive experiences and activities to promote security, self-esteem and learning
  • Consider having a buddy bench, worry box, listening corner, listening mascot
  • Provide time during the school day for homework completion
  • Link with other agencies e.g. school nurses, school counsellors, Social Services, Police
  • Provide spare equipment e.g. P.E. kit, pens/pencils, lend a coat/umbrella

As you are aware if there is a disclosure, staff should follow the Child Protection Procedures outlined by the school. Failure to report suspicion can be deemed as Wilful Neglect, which could become a criminal offence.

Additional links:
Keeping Learners Safe

Social Services and Wellbeing Act 2014 (Places a duty on organisations and professionals to have due regard to the UNCRC and to be “Alerters”)

Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence Act (Wales) (includes information relating to children and young people.)

Childline (0800 1111)

Meic Cymru