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Childrenyou're not alone

Children’s Therapy

JWA has Children’s Therapy, to work with children (3  to 16 years) of mothers/carers who are accessing our client support services.

Our Children’s Therapy is for children of our clients, provided they are no longer living with the perpetrator as it is not safe to work with children who are still being exposed to domestic abuse. It can also be confusing for them to be working through their fears, and learning that what they are being exposed to is wrong, and yet still having to live in the situation.

One to one sessions

The Children’s Therapy consists of 1:1 sessions with the children. These sessions generally take place in school. Initially the therapist can offer 12 sessions on a weekly basis, and can discuss with the mother/school/child the work that has been done if more sessions are needed.

During the sessions she explains that she sees children whose parents no longer live together and where there may have been difficult things that had happened at home e.g. shouting and hurting.

The sessions are generally child-led although the therapist will introduce activities, resources and ideas to support the child. She has an extensive tool kit, which includes art materials, puppets, small world figures and animals, as well as resources which enable the child to express themselves.

As well as looking at what the child has experienced the therapist also look at the child’s feelings.

The Children’s Therapist’s role

The role of the Children’s Therapist is also to offer support to the mother/carer in relation to the child and the issues that they are facing.

She makes it clear to the mother and child that what the child says to her is confidential, unless they are at risk of or are being harmed or are harming others.

She will however, give an overview to the mother of how things are going if requested and encourages the mother to keep her informed of anything important that would be beneficial for her to know whilst working with the child.

Joint sessions

She will offer joint sessions for the mother and child to attend together since a common consequence of living with domestic abuse is that the bond between mother and child is adversely affected.

Ultimately the aim of the work of the Children’s Therapist is to facilitate the child being able to speak to their mother about their feelings.

 

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We are grateful to BBC Children in Need for funding our Specialist Children’s Worker.