Child support workers

Refuge is committed to helping children overcome the trauma of witnessing or experiencing domestic violence.


Around two thirds of the residents in our refuges are children, the majority of whom are of pre-school age. They make up some of the most vulnerable, excluded and at risk children in the country.

Refuge employs a number of child support workers in our refuges across the country.  These workers help children to rebuild their lives following the trauma of witnessing or experiencing abuse.

Our child support workers hold one-to-one and group sessions with the children in our refuges.  These fun sessions support the bond between mothers and children, and assist children with basic developmental skills.  Sessions include:

  • Arts and crafts, story-telling, singing, cooking, gardening and play activities
  • Help with homework
  • Group discussions, exploring issues such as friendship, kindness and respect
  • Trips and outings for mothers and children to explore community resources such as libraries, play groups and leisure centres

The one-to-one sessions allow our child support workers to address each child’s individual needs, whilst  enabling their mothers to have private support sessions with refuge workers. This allows women to talk more freely about their traumatic experiences.


Our child support workers help with some of the behavioural issues children often display after experiencing abuse:

“One of the little girls in the refuge used to behave very aggressively towards the other children. I used one of our group sessions to introduce a discussion about being kind to each other, and helped the children make friendship bracelets. I also helped her mother access some therapeutic support for her daughter.”