Atal y Fro refuge is emergency temporary accommodation providing a safe and secure haven for female victims of domestic abuse.
During a stay at refuge women will receive on going emotional and practical support.
Our refuge accommodates 5 women and their children in the Vale of Glamorgan. However if it is unsafe to stay in this area we can find refuge spaces any where in the UK making sure victims safety is kept as the priority.
Outreach project offers support to those who have accessed our services and/or have complete their time with another service.
Each client has a key worker who will meets her weekly to help with:
- Safety planning.
- Building self confidence and independence.
- Advice on housing rights and responsibilities.
- Welfare rights and legal support.
- Accompanying to court.
- Assistance when applying for DSS grants and loans.
- Help with budgeting, paying bills and debts.
- Resettlement skills, such as shopping and cooking.
- Assistance in finding work, paid or unpaid, or getting the right training.
The Dispersed Housing Project is run by Atal y Fro. The project is supported by Supporting People of the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Newydd Housing Association.
The Vale of Glamorgan recognises that there is a diversity of needs when fleeing domestic abuse, and accessing temporary accommodation. The Dispersed Housing project provision has been created to meet the needs of individuals or families who do not meet the criteria for current refuge. We aim to be inclusive of all gender (i.e. male, female, LGBT) and families needs that are to be supported in managing the temporary accommodation. The project is currently being piloted until October 2017 with a view to moving forward into a more permanent accommodation.
Our role is to assess individuals who may have housing related support needs. We meet with the individual and talk about their specific requirements and assess what type of support would be appropriate. If an individual needs are complex we will assess the situation and try to link them to appropriate agencies.
The Tenant Support Scheme provides housing related support, which can include:
- Budgeting advice and assistance
- Social Skills
- Advice and assistance with
- Benefit claims
- Debt Advice
- Confidence Building
- Access to training and employment
- General Counseling
Court Based Advocate (CBA)
A pro-active advocacy service to women and men living with domestic violence and related issues, providing emotional and practical support to the whole family if necessary at a community level.
We provide information on housing, civil and criminal court and compose risk assessments with our service users tailored to there personal needs.
Wherever possible, the advocates follow a case through the various phases, keeping women informed throughout the process. The following are the key services offered to women:
- Being kept informed about their case
- General telephone support
- Being accompanied to court
- Risk assessment and safety plan
- Requesting special measures
- Pre-trial visit to court
- Victim impact statements
- Criminal restraining orders
- Referrals to other agencies
The advocates are extremely pro-active in their attempts to reach all women going through the courts and offering them support.
Independent Domestic Violence Advisor (IDVA)
IDVA aims to deliver support that has not previously been available to victims of domestic violence who wish to press charges against their abuser. We provide specialist support throughout this process and will also be able to access other services depending on what the person wants or needs. They possess specialist knowledge of both criminal and civil courts and will be able to advise on a range of associated issues.
The Advisers will work closely with the police and other agencies. The key point to remember about this post is that it’s independent – they are there for the victim and to support the victim’s decisions and are not concerned with achieving targets.
Atal Y Fro can support children and young people aged between 0-25 years old who have experienced or have been affected by domestic abuse.
We aim to break the cycle of domestic abuse by working with the children and young people affected so they can deal with issues that have affected them and carry on to achieve healthy relationships as they get older.
We can offer:
- Individual work for ages 4+
- Early years work ages 4-6
- Group work including Star Group and Recovery Toolkit aimed at working with the child and their carer.
Counselling is a type of talking therapy that allows a person to talk about their problems and feelings in a confidential and dependable environment.
We work closely with local colleges and Universities to provide work experience for trainee councillors and also have voluntary councillors who offer a service with Atal y Fro. Anyone wishing to access these services must already be working with any of the above services and be agreed this is the best service for them.
There councillors are trained to listen with empathy and can help you deal with any negative thoughts and feelings you have. Sometimes the term ‘counselling’ is used to refer to talking therapies in general but counselling is also a type of therapy in its own right. The counselling service is offered in conjunction with other Atal y Fro projects.
Education Prevention in the Community (EPIC) Programme
The EPIC programme is delivered by Atal Y Fro and forms the DV services of Families Together Project. EPIC is a prevention programme that addresses domestic abuse prevention. EPIC is delivered across Wales through various elements including both group work programmes and 1-1 sessions with a designated support worker.
EPIC Group work Programmes
Men – Choose to Change is the male perpetrator group work programme that looks at behaviour and impact on victims.
Women – JBA (Journey Beyond Abuse) group work programme for victims of domestic abuse.
Vista for female perpetrators who have not been a victim of domestic abuse.
Young People – Break4Change Cymru, Adolescent to parent violence and abuse (APVA) programme designed for parents whose children are abusive, violent or who are using destructive behaviour.
1-1 Sessions are also facilitated across the whole EPIC programme.
Couples work is also available for couples who have completed a group work programme first. The ethos of the couples work is that couples are able to remain together safely or separate amicably.
Children are signposted to appropriate children and young peoples services.
We want to break the silence on domestic violence – so we consistently publicise the fact that the emphasis of our work is around prevention – the earlier, the better. This will mean that as soon as we get a referral (from whatever source – including from a family itself), we will call together the agencies who need to be involved, to put together a ‘package’ for the whole family – always ensuring their safety. It will be initially for six weeks then reviewed and a longer term plan put together. We provide outreach support that ensures ‘coordination’ of effort and sustainability.
Early Intervention Programme is a module that was originally designed in New Zealand to work with the whole family; providing a service for couples who wish to stay together or separate amicably.
We work with the whole family through this period by providing one to one work for the victim, their partner and any children involved.
“Providing a service for couples who wish to stay together safely or separate amicably”
As part of our Education Prevention Intervention in the Community (E.P.I.C.) programme, we have our own program for male perpetrators of domestic violence, called Choose to Change. (C2C)
The aim of the programme is to:
- Enable participants to identify and acknowledge their current / past abusive behaviour and use skills and strategies taught on the programme to make positive changes in their behaviour. This is done through conversation, individual and group exercises and the practice of the skills and strategies taught on the program
- Enable participants to take responsibility for their use of abusive behaviour in their intimate relationships.
- Enable participants to identify the beliefs and intents which underpin their abusive behaviour.
- Enable participants to acknowledge the effects of their behaviour on themselves, their partners, children and others.
- Women’s Safety Worker works alongside programme engaging partner/ex partners to ensure management of safety and risk whilst also offering support.
The first step for people who want to participate in the program is for them to be referred either by self-referral or through an agency. Once the referral is received they will then be invited to attend for an initial assessment and complete pre-group work. If suitable they will then be invited to attend the programme. The programme consists of 24 group session run per two hours per week.
Journey Beyond Abuse
Journey beyond abuse is an educational and therapeutic programme that is delivered in the form of workshops for groups of women who want to break away from the cycle of domestic abuse in which many have been trapped.
This is done by:
- Understanding of the dynamics of abuse
- Identifying their own personal experiences
- learning practical strategies of motivation and empowerment to help them make positive choices
- A greater awareness to channels of safety
VISTA’s programme (women who use force) provides services to women who use any combination of control, force or violence in their intimate relationships. Their ethos is implementation and services grounded in belief that women who use non-self-defensive physical force against their intimate partners – whether they are domestic violence survivors or not – are putting themselves and others at greater risk of harm and therefore, need contextualised advocacy, support and intervention.
The name VISTA was chosen to indicate the programme’s extended view of serving women who had used force – one grounded in a ‘healing place’ philosophy that validates domestic violence survivorship and diverse life experiences, while encouraging accountability and focusing on personal choice.
Given our understanding of their distinction between mens and womens violence, we believe and continue to believe that an effective curriculum would have to be specifically tailored to the needs of women who were struggling with personal shame and/or guilt for having used force and frequently have unaddressed survivorship issues.
What is Child on Parent Violence?
A commonly used definition of this problem is ‘any act of a child that is intended to cause physical, psychological or financial damage in order to gain control over a parent’ (Cottrell, 2001: 3). It is a pattern of behaviour or behaviours, which includes: hitting, name calling, making threats, stealing from parents (money or belongings to sell), damaging possessions and/or the physical home.
What is Break4Change Cymru?
It is a 10 session programme, using proven methods and materials, which aim to engender the belief in change and to stop or dramatically reduce the abuse. Its purpose is to help young people better manage their frustrations, help parents increase their sense of well-being, reduce their isolation, to clarify clear boundaries for unacceptable and acceptable behaviour, examine and build strategies for the future.
THIS IS NOT AN ANGER MANAGEMENT OR PARENTING PROGRAMME
How does it work?
The programme works as follows:
- The Young People’s Group
- The Parents Group
- These run in parallel to each other
- Each session is 2.5 hours, and will include strategies for addressing behaviour.
- There is a Creative Element which uses art, music or other mediums with the young people, to encourage reflection and embedding of the learning.
- The Restorative Element uses film to build a dialogue between the groups is developed during the programme, to give each person the opportunity to have their voice heard uninterrupted and to begin to repair the harm to family relationships.
Who can be referred?
Before making a referral, please ensure that you have spoken with parents and the young person about the programme
- Parents with young people aged between 11 & 18, where the abuse toward parents has been on-going for 6 months
- Parents and young people who are motivated to change the situation, who are prepared to change their behaviour
- Engagement and attendance is voluntary, consent is needed from both parents and young people.
- The referring agent SHOULD ensure that there will be continual contact and support to the family throughout the course.
What happens next?
On receipt of the referral the APVA Coordinator will meet and assess the parent and the referring agent will assess the young person, separately. This provides a confidential space for parents and young people to talk more freely and to discover if the programme is for them. This also offers an opportunity to explore individual’s motivation, identify the levels of abuse and/or violence, and whether there is the desire to change behaviours. A decision will be made as to whether to offer of a place on the programme.