Bright ideas seminar - Change in the air: Innovative new family-based approaches to addressing domestic abuse


22nd June

Sheffield Hallam University


Janet McDermott - photo
Janet McDermott
Women's Aid Federation England
Rebecca Vagi photo
Rebecca Vagi
Women's Aid Federation England
Jo Manning 2
Joanna Manning
The Children's Society
Felicity Reed photo
Felicity Reed
PAUSE Southwark
Cherryl Henry-Leach
Growing Futures


June 22, 2017 - 10:00 am


June 21, 2017 - 3:40 pm


Cantor Building, Furnival Street, Sheffield Hallam University, City Campus, Sheffield, S1 2ND   View map

bright ideas
DCST&GRowing Futures
Womens aid logo
southwark council

Why attend?

A change of approach to the way in which domestic abuse services are working is underway. It is not coordinated, but is emerging from different areas of practice. The common denominator is a move away from a narrow, risk avoidance model for the victim and towards a more common sense approach which – to differing extents – accepts the need to work with the reality of the victim’s situation which may, for example, include accepting a harm reduction approach. There is also a clear move towards pro-actively working with the victim’s children and, in some projects but not others, accepting the perpetrator as part of the ‘whole family’.

This Bright Ideas seminar offers participants the opportunity to hear from three ground-breaking initiatives. All reflect a fundamental belief in a response which is built around the needs and timescale of the victim rather than a process driven response.

The initiatives featured are:

  • Change That Lasts – a major re-think of approach by Women’s Aid which looks at providing earlier help and making sure its effects actually last. Focussed around the needs of each woman (and her children), drawn up in collaboration with domestic abuse survivors and with a wide range of other agencies, Change That Lasts comprises three key schemes – ask me, trusted professional, and expert support
  • PAUSE Southwark – One of a number of Pause programmes across the country working with women who have had successive children removed into care. PAUSE does not seek to “rescue women and run their lives for them,” and it is not a specialist domestic abuse project but work systemically alongside women to help them identify goals and facilitate change. In Southwark, all of the women using this service have been identified as having experienced intimate abuse  and seeks to understand and work with this difficulty as part of a wider package of psychosocial support.
  • Growing Futures – a radical re-think of domestic abuse services in Doncaster, now led by Domestic Abuse Navigators, with a new focus on working with a wide range of other statutory and voluntary services to ensure that bespoke recovery programmes are provided to meet the needs of the whole family.

All these initiatives have started from scratch by reviewing what didn’t work and what their service users needed. All have controversial elements within their approach. There are elements of similarity, in particular a focus on the importance of genuine cross-agency working, but also some differences.

This is a rare opportunity to hear from three major initiatives which are setting the pace for innovation in the field of addressing domestic abuse. Listen to, question, and network with the speakers.

About the projects

Change that Lasts

Women’s Aid Federation England is a federation of 220 domestic abuse services with over 40 years of experience shaping and coordinating responses to domestic abuse across the country. In partnership with Welsh Women’s Aid, we have developed the Change that Lasts model, which places survivors of domestic abuse at the heart of the response and gives priority to their needs, strengths and resilience. By listening to women we can provide help earlier and make sure its effects actually last.

Change that Lasts is made up of three main schemes that involve the whole community in taking a stand against domestic abuse. Together, these schemes ensure that survivors and their children can access help wherever they disclose abuse:

  • ask me – an intervention that mobilises the community to raise awareness of domestic abuse within their networks
  • Trusted Professional – building on the trusting relationships that survivors already have with professionals they’re in contact with, this intervention will help upskill staff so that domestic abuse is not missed and help is available earlier
  • Expert Support – an intervention for the dedicated and specialist domestic abuse services that are already providing an expert response to survivors and will help reconnect them to a needs-led, strength based, trauma informed response.


The purpose of Pause is to prevent the damaging consequences of thousands more children being taken into care each year. Pause works with women who have experienced or are at risk of, repeat removals of children from their care.  The programme gives women the chance to pause and take control over their lives, breaking a destructive cycle that causes both them and their children deep trauma as well costing the tax payer hundreds of millions of pounds. Through an intense programme of support it aims to break this cycle and give women the opportunity to reflect, tackle destructive patterns of behaviour, and develop new skills and responses that can help them create a more positive future.

Pause has currently 7 practices around the country and is expanding opening 10 more practices this year. Pause Southwark is one of the original pilot sites, which now has funding sustained longer term. Whilst not a specific domestic abuse project, all of the women using the service in Southwark have experienced abuse in partner relationships, pattern that is seen in all of other practices. Pause does not seek to rescue women nor run their lives nor make decisions for them. We work systemically alongside women to help them identify goals and facilitate change. Pause Southwark works with the reality that highly vulnerable women may move rapidly from one abusive relationship to another and we seek to understand and work with this complexity as part of a wider package of psychosocial and practical support.

Growing Futures

The ‘Growing Futures’ programme was established in Doncaster in the spring of 2015 to improve the outcomes of families, and particularly children and young people, who have experienced domestic violence and abuse by improving the services that work with them.

At the operational level, 12 Domestic Abuse Navigators (DANs) were employed as change enablers, and have worked with 102 families, including delivering direct therapeutic work with 277 family members.

At the strategic level, work was also undertaken by Growing Futures programme management to improve the service response to domestic violence and abuse by developing services, improving multi-agency collaboration, and embedding a ‘whole family’ approach through a new strategy.

Agenda (subject to change)

9.30 – 10.00

Registration and Coffee

10.00 – 10.10

Welcome and introduction to the projects

Facilitator: Joanna Manning, Area Manager for the East Midlands and National Lead on Substance Misuse, The Children’s Society

10.10 – 11.30

Change That Lasts

  • A major overhaul of approach, reflecting the fact that services are too often not meeting women’s needs
  • Needs based approach recognising that every individual is different, and every contact with a victim is an opportunity for intervention
  • Objective is building resilience for the victim and her her children, leading to independence
  • Three strands directed at community, professional and specialist DV levels
  • Being piloted in several different areas

Rebecca Vagi, Development Manager, Change That Lasts

Janet McDermott, Manager of Member Support Services

Women’s Aid Federation England

11.30 – 11.55


11.55 – 1.15

PAUSE Southwark

  • Holistic service for women experiencing successive removals of children
  • One of a number of PAUSE programmes operating across England
  • All women supported by PAUSE Southwark have experienced abuse in intimate relationships
  • Services designed to fit women’s needs rather than service providers’ perceptions
  • Winner of Guardian Public Services Award 2016, category of ‘Care’

Felicity Reed, Practice Lead, PAUSE Southwark

Anna Rickards, Head of Practice and Learning, PAUSE

1.15 – 2.10

Lunch and networking

2.10 – 3.30

Growing Futures

  • Run by Domestic Abuse Navigators
  • DANs undertake direct case work in high risk complex cases, but will offer mentoring and IAG if the risk is not high
  • Whole family approach, with emphasis on children
  • Work with wide range of partners

Cherryl Henry-Leach, Operations Manager

Alice Lee, Domestic Abuse Navigator Team Leader

Growing Futures, Doncaster Children’s Services Trust

3.30 – 3.40

Wrap up and finish

Joanna Manning

  • Domestic abuse practitioners
  • Children’s and family social workers
  • Social housing
  • Health Visitors
  • Sure Start Children’s Centres
  • Midwives
  • Other community health practitioners
  • Voluntary sector organisations
  • Mental health professionals
  • Drug and alcohol professionals
  • Family and parenting support services
  • Police
  • Probation and other agencies working with those in the criminal justice system
  • Advocacy and counselling services
  • Citizens Advice Bureaux, Law Centres
  • Wellbeing services
  • Service commissioners

Delegate fee:

 £130 + VAT = £156

A discount is available when you book 3 or more places together:

Team of 3 (3rd person attends for half price) £325 + VAT = £390

Team of 5 (5th person attends for free) £520 + VAT = £624

ring 0115 916 3104 for details.

Included in the delegate package:

  • Delegate pack
  • Lunch
  • Refreshments available throughout the day

Booking Terms and Conditions

Cancellations received up to and including 1st June 2017 will be refunded in full less an administration fee of 25%. Cancellations received after this date will be liable for payment in full.

Team bookings are non-cancellable but substitute delegates will always be accepted.

The full invoice amount will remain payable if you fail to attend the event, however, substitute delegates will be accepted up until, and including, the day of the event.


Confirmation of booking:

Your booking will be confirmed by email where possible (and by fax or post otherwise), and you will be provided with directions to the venue and details on nearby hotel accommodation. If you do not receive such acknowledgement, please contact Central Conference Consultants Ltd on 0115 916 3104.

The training will take place at Sheffield Hallam University, in Sheffield city centre

The full address is:

Cantor Building

Furnival Street

Sheffield Hallam University

City Campus


S1 2ND

Link to Sheffield Hallam, University website directions and map –

Car parking

The nearest car park is  on Arundel Street (Science car park B):

Other nearby car parks can be found by following this link:

Rail – Sheffield Hallam University City Campus is immediately opposite the train station and the bus station

It is a short walk to the campus from here


Accommodation – a number of hotels close to the venue can be found at tis link: