Council secures funding to assist families who experience violence from younger family members

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Targeted work to help families who experience violence committed by younger members of their own families will begin over the summer, thanks to a successful Swindon Borough Council funding bid.

The £129,400 secured from the Community Foundation for Swindon and Wiltshire will be used over two years to work with adolescents who are physically and emotional violent, and with the parents, carers and siblings who are involved.

The council has recently identified that there are examples of violence being committed by children on family members locally and if left unaddressed, such behaviour could continue into adulthood.

One-to-one sessions conducted by specially-trained staff aimed at increasing safety within families and heightening responsibility on the part of the child perpetrator will be given to those identified as requiring support.

Professionals working with children and young people, including those engaged with the central Government’s Troubled Families Programme, often cite adolescent on parent violence as a common reason for the breakdown of families which can lead to problems associated with:

Non-attendance at school
Young people committing crime
Families involved in anti-social behaviour
Adults being out of work
Money will also be used to help bridge the gap in local research around child on family member violence, specifically looking at assessments, intervention planning, delivery and joint approaches using the views of the victim and the perpetrator.

Councillor Fionuala Foley, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said: “Unfortunately child on family member violence is something that occurs in homes up and down the country. Recently it is something that has been identified in Swindon as an issue that requires some work by our Children’s Services team.

“It is excellent that we have secured funding to address the problem head-on with those involved and I am sure the work that will be carried out will be of great benefit.

“The funding will allow staff to gather robust data and other information about children being violent towards family members to help inform and shape future work in this area.”