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Project information

Recognise, Reconnect and Rebuild Group

Therapeutic group sessions for children recovering from the effects of living with domestic abuse (DA). These are run in parallel with sessions for their mothers to achieve the best outcomes for the whole family.

12 weeks

Charity information: East Surrey Domestic Abuse Services (ESDAS)

East Surrey Domestic Abuse Services (ESDAS) logo
  • Need


    Children who have been exposed to DA need guidance and support in moving on from what happened to their family. They lack self-esteem and may blame themselves in part for what happened. They have experienced abuse, separation and loss.


    Weekly sessions help children to identify and express their feelings and to learn strategies on managing these emotions through fun and child-centred activities. The mothers concurrent group helps them to understand their children's experience and to enhance positive parenting and family recovery.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To run one AVA (Against Violence and Abuse)
    Community Groups Programme


    » In conjunction with Welcare, ESDAS will invite 12 children and their mothers to attend the after-school course.

    What success will look like

    Successful completion of the 12 week course

    Aim 2

    To rebuild children's self-esteem


    » Children will be helped to find strategies on managing intense feelings
    » Participation in the group helps them to understand that this happens to others as well.
    » They will learn that it is OK to talk about what happened.

    What success will look like

    Completion of an outcome star chart pre- and post -the course will show positive progress. They will no longer feel to blame for what happened.

    Aim 3

    To improve children's safety


    » Children will be helped to devise safety plans in the event of further exposure to abuse.

    What success will look like

    Children will indicate that they will not condone any type of violent behaviour and will not intervene in an abusive incident.

    Aim 4

    To facilitate family recovery


    » The parallel Mums' course will help Mums to understand and consolidate their children's recovery and help them through the healing process.

    What success will look like

    Recovery and empowerment star charts will indicate improvements.

    Aim 5

    To improve interpersonal relationships


    » Children will be helped to devise strategies to manage feelings and to resolve conflict appropriately.
    » It is important that we have both male and female course leaders as a demonstration of positive role models.

    What success will look like

    Recovery and empowerment star charts will indicate improvements.

  • Impact


    Parent/Child Relationships will be rebuilt and strengthened so that family life is more harmonious and settled.
    There will be a reduced need for children to be referred to the statutory children's services.
    A children's advisory group will give feedback on the course as well as that from the mothers.


    Appropriate families will be chosen from those already well known to our services.
    For our venue, we have been offered free access to a school's facilities which is safe and secure.
    Staff and volunteers are all DBS checked and are experienced in this work.
    Those children without family access to transport will be brought from their own schools using an approved taxi firm.


    At the end of the 12 weeks we will email our donors to thank them and to update them about the success of the project. Quotations from participants will be forwarded.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £4,551

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £1,920 Transport Safe transport for children
      £1,152 Staff costs Sessional staff costs
      £360 Travel Mothers' travel expenses
      £360 Resources Paper, pens, glue, card etc
      £300 Refreshments Drinks and biscuits
      £459 Management Management and evaluation
  • Background


    ESDAS is based in East Surrey. Whilst Surrey is relatively wealthy, it does have significant areas of deprivation. Having said that, DA is prevalent in all areas and all strata of society and we must not stigmatise and stereotype.
    ESDAS itself has been in operation for over 20 years and has significant expertise and reputation in helping families and works closely with all the statutory authorities.


    The primary beneficiaries will be the 12 families involved but there is a wider network eg their friends, schools, GPs, statutory children's services whose interventions will be needed less.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    ESDAS has significant expertise in this area. Our children's workers have many years of experience of such therapeutic interventions. We leverage in the help of volunteers and for this programme, Welcare and the school which is hosting the sessions.
    ESDAS is the lead partner of 4 such organisations in Surrey and was the first to develop a dedicated children's service. Surrey has been chosen by Women's Aid to pilot a new project called Change that Lasts.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.



    Sue selects the families to be involved and leads the children's sessions.


    An experienced outreach worker, Sandra leads the mothers' programme


    Josh is a young, enthusiastic, male volunteer who is an excellent role model for the children.

"Every time after the group, he's always better" "Doing it together means he wouldn't think he was the one with the problem" She deals with things differently now, we've bonded more!

Quotes from Mums attending the first group