Call our Crisis Line: 0141 773 3533

Survey Monkey for Children Young People’s Service

We have a Survey Monkey that we would like anyone who has engaged with the Children Young People’s service to complete.
It is only 10 short questions and should only take a few minutes to complete.

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/YCMNG2X

Thanks to People’s Postcode Community Trust

Our ‘Let’s Grow’ project has been entirely funded by the Postcode Community Trust which is a grant-giving charity funded entirely by players of People’s Postcode lottery. We received £17,673 in total from the trust which has enabled us to set up a safe growing and learning community garden for women and their children. As can be seen from the photographs, we have had lots of fun working together to set this up and the garden is really starting to take shape. Also included in the programme will be healthy eating cookery classes, a weekly lunch club using produce from the garden and supplemented with other local ingredients. Workshops aiming to reconnect women and plants by teaching women to identify, grow and use medicinal herbs are also in the pipeline.
Both the women and children attending the garden have taken great pleasure and pride in tasting the crops they have planted and despite it being a poor summer, attendance has been good come rain or shine!
PPL Colour Logo

CASH FOR KIDS VISIT GEWA

Cash for Kids visit
9th October 2014
Our children and young people’s service has received ongoing support from Cash for Kids over the years in assisting with things like a large day trip for women and their children, tickets to attend a Badminton match at the Commonwealth Games and yearly support as part of their Christmas appeal to support vulnerable children to have gifts at Christmas time.
Due to our positive links with Cash for Kids, Lesley Allan their Grants Officer asked to come for a visit to our project along with some of CFK’s members from Asda stores at Bishopbriggs and Coatbridge. We arranged for some of the women, children and young people we support to meet with Lesley and the Asda workers to share what they were comfortable with about their experiences of domestic abuse and about the support they have received from GEWA.
The visit was a huge success and the feedback we received from Cash for Kids was very positive highlighting the strength of the women and children they spent time with for living with and surviving domestic abuse. We feel this visit has given them a real life insight into the effects of domestic abuse and the kinds of support on offer from GEWA.
Thank you to Cash for Kids, Lesley Allan, the Asda Workers who attended and all the women, children and young people who were involved in this visit.
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What the Children Want You To Know

In this video, children who’ve been affected by domestic abuse share their experiences, explain the effects that domestic abuse can have, and talk about how Glasgow East Women’s Aid workers have helped them.

If you or someone you know is affected by domestic abuse, contact us to find out how Glasgow East Women’s Aid can help.

Case Study: Laura

Laura, a gay women, contacted our service for advice about the psychological abuse she was experiencing from her partner of 10 years. Laura was not aware that GEWA would support her as it was a woman who was the perpetrator of abuse, and had a fear that she would be judged. She felt relieved to find out that GEWA would support her. She engaged in a process of counselling to help her work through the effects of living with psychological abuse.

Names have been changed to protect the individuals involved.

Case Study: Child in Groupwork programme

An 8-year-old child has used our service over the past year and a half and has been supported on a one to one basis by his Keyworker. This child has witnessed domestic abuse within the home and had been placed at risk due to his step-father having a conviction for a sexual offence. There were also issues around his step-father’s misuse of alcohol which exacerbated the level of domestic abuse within the home. This resulted in the child being removed from the family home by Social Work Services and residing with a family member for a considerable period of time as a place of safety.

Throughout the assessment of the child, his keyworker highlighted his need for social opportunities to assist the child to develop his social skills and appropriate boundaries when with his peers. Therefore, this child was assessed as being appropriate for inclusion in a groupwork programme focusing on social skills, peer interaction and self esteem.

By using our monitoring and evaluation tool “All About Me” worksheet, all children in the group noted their likes, dislikes, strengths and weaknesses. When asked to describe himself, this child stated on his worksheet “bad, hell and devil” in the first session of the group. This signified his feelings of anger, blame and shame. By the end of the programme, using the same tool as above, this child described himself as “nice, incredible, good and smart” a marked difference in his view of himself indicating a promotion in his self esteem.

This group was a mix of children and young people with a range of complex needs as a result of chaotic family difficulties. As the group became established and the children and young people began accepting one another, their anger and aggression lessened and they began forming bonds with each other. Here are a selection of quotes from the children and young people from their feedback at the end of this groupwork programme: “…we could all live together in one street” (indicating if they did stay in the same street they could stay in touch, otherwise this is difficult due to local territorial issues), “…we don’t want the group to end.” and “…can’t we keep driving (in the mini bus)”. These comments highlight how a group of children and young people with very differing needs and difficulties were able to come together, share experiences and leave the group with a common bond evidenced by wanting to stay in touch with one another when the group ended.

Case Study: Molly

Molly was referred by Strathclyde Police following her experience of rape by a stranger. As a consequence of the rape Molly suffered Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and she received weekly counselling support from GEWA. This helped her manage the overwhelming flashbacks, nightmares and fears she had.

She has since returned to her job, feels safer and life seems normal again. However she continues to have sporadic contact with GEWA when she feels the effects of her trauma are re-triggered.

Names have been changed to protect the individuals involved.

Case Study: K

This piece of work has been written in line with the Data Protection Act 1998 and therefore personal details such as identity have been protected.

K is a ten year old boy who has used our children and young people’s service for some time and was more recently referred again by his mother following a break from the service. There is a long standing history of serious domestic abuse perpetrated by K’s father towards his mother which K and his two younger siblings have witnessed. K’s mother has been hospitalised previously due to injuries sustained by K’s father. K’s father has been charged various times for domestic abuse and due to this, previously had bail conditions in place which dictated he should not approach the family or family home. K and his siblings are very isolated within their community which can often be a factor in domestic abuse situations and there are poverty issues also which exacerbate their isolation and related difficulties.

K and his siblings have an allocated Social Worker who monitors their Supervision Order which has a condition attached that the children have not to have contact with their father. K and one of his brothers have recently been displaying behaviours such as aggression, lack of concentration, severe hunger, leaving school without permission and stealing. On a recent social outing, all three children disclosed that their father had made contact with them and how worried and scared they were about this. In line with our Child Protection Policy, the Children and Young People (CYP) Worker offered support and reassurance to the children to illustrate that they had done the right thing to tell and explained that in order to keep them safe, the Worker would speak to their social worker about dad visiting. The children understood why this course of action was necessary and the Worker explained that she would speak to their mother to keep her fully informed before contacting social work.

In discussion with K’s mother, she confirmed that her ex partner had been visiting the family home. The CYP Worker contacted the Social Worker for the children and advised her of the information that had been received. The passing on of concerns and ensuring the children’s worries and fears were highlighted to this statutory agency, resulted in further safeguards being put in place for the children by social work ie. more regular, unplanned visits to the family.

K was involved in our recent domestic abuse group programme which resulted in K and a group of other children writing, directing and performing their very own play about their own feelings, thoughts and experiences about domestic abuse. K gained peer support regarding his feelings about his dad and was able to make friends within the group which encouraged K to be confident to take on one of the lead roles in the play.

Due to the level of support K has received on a one to one, group and social outing basis as well as, the CYP Worker’s strong partnership links with K’s Social Worker, he very recently came to our project, on his own, straight from school to disclose that his serious worries because actually his father has been staying in the family home since Christmas and his mother had told K and his brothers not to tell anyone. K also disclosed that he was too scared to return home and explained that his father’s behaviour had been becoming increasingly violent and aggressive towards his mother, himself and his brothers. K understood the process of me contacting social work to protect him and was relieved for this to be done. The burden of keeping such a significant secret about his dad for such a long time, has had a considerable effect on K and he was clearly reassured that his CYP Worker and his Social Worker would be working together to ensure his and his brother’s safety and well being.

Had K not received significant support from our children and young people’s service and built trusting relationships with CYP workers, he may not have managed to build the courage, had the confidence to or felt comfortable enough to make this disclosure which would have resulted in himself and his brothers remaining at serious risk of ongoing exposure to domestic abuse and their emotional safety and security being significantly affected.

Case Study: Anna

Anna has depression and is currently being prescribed anti-depressants. She has had episodes in mental health hospitals and has an allocated social worker. During a session with her CPN, Anna disclosed that she had lived with domestic abuse throughout her childhood and her marriage.

She was referred for counselling to GEWA and after a period of therapy, Anna is more stable and settled in her life. She feels she has an understanding of why she at times in the past had suicide attempts. She continues to take her anti-depressants, however the need for psychiatric services has greatly reduced.

Names have been changed to protect the individuals involved.

Case Study: Family M

The following case study reflects the complex issues of the families that engage with our service. It will be evidenced by best practice through effective inter-agency/partnership working, a completely person centred and holistic approach through comprehensive assessment, 1.1 sessions with mother and children and also family group work with the refuge team to include two housing support workers and a children and young person’s worker. This work will be anonymised to concur with The Data Protection Act 1998, European Convention of Human Rights and The Children (Scotland) Act 1995.

Family M arrived in refuge as a result of an incident of serious domestic abuse. T (mother) has seven children four of whom came to refuge with her and ranged in age from 3 to 9. Two of her children lived with their maternal grandmother aged 14 and 4 and until recently the other child lived with the maternal grandfather but is now living in refuge aged 12. The children were on the Child Protection Register and the level of concern from statutory services was high. T has a history of heroin use and had begun a methadone programme around the time of arrival at refuge. She had been in a long term abusive relationship with a partner who was also a heroin user. He also fathered four of her children.

Through initial risk assessment it was evidenced that priority must be given to routines and boundaries within the home, school attendance and personal hygiene to include dental care and healthy diet. The three workers based in refuge worked closely over the next six weeks in completing a more comprehensive assessment and gathering information from other agencies such as social work, health visitor, addictions worker and education. This would also provide additional information in the form of family dynamics, level of abuse, evidence of engagement with agencies, number of school placements and attendance levels which were at 66%.

The children were withdrawn and sullen when they arrived and the youngest child had a speech impediment which is indicative of his experience of the abuse. Another of the children had issues with eating and her weight was being monitored weekly by the school nurse. Three of the children have additional support needs which could be reflective of the seven educational placements that they have had in their primary years. T was initially eager to engage but then became elusive. Through team discussion the decision was taken to raise the concern of lapse in substance misuse with T. She accepted that she was struggling and was supported by the refuge team to have her methadone level re-assessed and also to engage with a member of our support team who has expertise in addictions which has proved a positive intervention.

Due to a further instance of domestic violence over the holiday period and issues with father returning one of the children to mother, The Children’s Hearing System took the decision to withhold paternal contact with the children. This was as a result of the children being interviewed, completing reports with their worker and also having the opportunity to speak at the hearing. The children did not find this a positive experience as it was their view that the panel members had not listened to what they said and this was reflected in the thoughts of the three worker’s who were there. T also felt that the panel had made unhelpful remarks that minimised the level of abuse sustained. A subsequent letter of concern was submitted to the Children’s Panel from ourselves and resulted in them receiving training in domestic abuse from workers at GEWA. This was a difficult period for the family who feared for their security. The father turned up at the school gates one morning as the children arrived. This experience caused great distress and through working with social work, the police and school the refuge team were able to put a plan in place that would ensure the safety of the family in times of risk.

T has a strained relationship with her mother who seems to exert control over many levels. An example of this would be in her speaking with agencies such as social work, health and education without T’s knowledge or consent. This can become very frustrating for T and impacts on her ability to make decisions for herself. Her mother also undermines her in ways such as controlling what decisions are being made for the children, where to shop, how to dress etc.

T’s relationship with her father can also be strained but not to the level of her mother. Her parents are separated however spend a lot of time together.

T has positively engaged in parenting sessions, routines and boundaries, support for addiction, and self esteem work as well as house meetings and art therapy but requires support and recognition due to the negative interactions from extended family. The children have worked both on a 1.1 and group basis on issues such as self esteem/emotional resilience, bereavement and loss (seasons for growth), personal safety, health relationships, healthy living and also in activity based programmes within refuge.

Ongoing communication with partner agencies and significant others has ensured that there is no duplication of work and that information shared is accurate and up to date.

T’s oldest son came to live at refuge in the latter part of her stay and displayed a range of complex behaviours but engaged well with all of the refuge team to address these. Issues such as overcrowding and also the change in family dynamics brought sibling rivalry and attention seeking behaviours. The refuge team encouraged the family to listen, respect and support each other through this period with structured family meetings in the refuge offices. The family gave positive feedback that they each felt that they had the opportunity not only to be heard but also to hear how their behaviours affect others.

Due to the level support and engagement, changes are evidenced in T’s ability to manage her addiction through her methadone programme, parent effectively, communicate positively and ensure that the children’s attendance levels at school are acceptable which are currently at 98.5%. The children are no longer on The Child Protection Register. Each of the children thrived having had the opportunity of living in a safe and nurturing environment and there have been no concerns with weight or speech and dental needs have been addressed.

The family moved into a permanent tenancy in January 2011 and are continuing to thrive with the support of Women’s Aid.