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Community Groups Programme (Archive)

The Community Group programmes are for children, young people and their mothers who have experienced domestic violence.  They provide a community based setting to share and talk about their experiences.

The Community Group model was originally developed in Canada. AVA has the endorsement of the Canadian authors to adapt and roll out the model in the UK.

The model is based around a programme of sessions for children aged 4 -21 (the children are divided into age-specific groups) which run for two hours a week over a twelve-week period.

The programme addresses the following core issues

  • validation of the children’s experiences
  • understanding abuse
  • reducing self-blame
  • safety planning
  • managing appropriate and inappropriate expressions of emotion
  • the mother-child relationship.

The programme offers concurrent group sessions for the children’s mothers. They are supported to understand how the violence has impacted on their child and how best to help them through the healing process.


The Community Groups Programme was evaluated by Middlesex University. Their final report can be found here.

Community Groups training

We offer a 3 day training course for practitioners to train to become Community Group coordinators. The Programme works best when a range of partner agencies in an area are trained and committed to working together on it. Partner agencies can include

  • health visiting
  • school nursing
  • social services
  • voluntary sector
  • education
  • probation service.

For information about our next Community Groups course or to enquire about getting the training delivered to your organisation please contact us.

Members’ Area

If you have attended training already, you will have been told that there is a members’ section on our website where you can find

  • all training presentations
  • all Community Groups training manuals
  • lists of resources
  • lists of areas outside of London running groups
  • evaluation data and resources
  • sample forms and guidance
  • details of other group coordinators and facilitators
  • event and training information.

To login to the members’ site, please click here.

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