A PIONEERING PROJECT to help children overcome trauma will be trialling in the UK after a donation by a charitable foundation.
The Anna Freud Centre will be running the pilot of a specialist programme to help children who have been the victim of domestic homicide, after its successful introduction in the United States.
The money has been donated by the Joanna Simpson Foundation. The Foundation was set up in the memory of Joanna Simpson who was killed by her estranged husband. The Foundation runs fundraising events to support new initiatives to improve the help given to the children of families blighted by domestic violence.
JSF chair Hetti Barkworth-Nanton commented: “I am delighted to be able to make this award to the Anna Freud Centre whose reputation is immense in this field.
“Our aim is to provide targeted investments which have the potential to change the landscape of care given to children and their families. Together, we are hoping that this pioneering work, spearheaded by Yale University in the United States, will be brought here to help children affected by tragedy.
“All the evidence shows that children affected by domestic violence are more likely to go on to repeat the behaviour so it could not be more important that we act to help children both now and for their long term wellbeing, and ultimately break this cycle of violence.
“This is the Foundation’s first award and we hope to be able to support other initiatives in the coming months and years.”
The work will involve training clinicians at the Anna Freud Centre who are due to be trained by experts at Yale University. The Anna Freud Centre and Yale already work together collaboratively on a number of projects.
The intervention aims to support children and their carers in the immediate aftermath of the killing with a view to preventing psychological problems such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
David Trickey, Consultant Clinical Psychologist at the Anna Freud Centre said: “The Anna Freud Centre is incredibly grateful to the Joanna Simpson Foundation for its generosity.
“I value both its support for this work and their expertise in the area of domestic violence. With its assistance, the Anna Freud Centre looks forward to piloting this unique intervention in the UK, working with children and their carers to prevent the development and manifestation of psychological problems.”
Notes to editors
The Anna Freud Centre is a children’s mental health charity with over 60 years’ experience of caring for young minds. Our vision is a world in which children and their families are effectively supported to build on their own strengths to achieve their goals in life.
To transform the experience of children, young people and their families with mental health issues we:
·Carry out research to improve understanding of mental health and resilience and to evaluate and improve treatments and services offered
·Teach and train a new generation of researchers and clinicians in the latest skills and tools to improve mental health globally
The Joanna Simpson Foundation is currently interested in investing in research which addresses gaps in understanding of the needs of children affected by domestic abuse and homicide, the long term impact of childhood experience of domestic abuse, the availability of current services, and the appropriateness of existing policy and law in safeguarding and protecting children. Please contact us for more details about our research programme or to get involved.