Peterborough charity launches new ‘family respect project’ to tackle domestic abuse

Staff at the YMCA Trinity Group's Family Respect project.Staff at the YMCA Trinity Group's Family Respect project.
Staff at the YMCA Trinity Group's Family Respect project.
Peterborough charity YMCA Trinity Group has launched a new ‘family respect’ project to help combat domestic abuse across Peterborough and Cambridgeshire.

The project, which is being funded by the Home Office, focuses on working with children and young people who display abusive behaviours towards their parents or other members of the family.

From 2019 to 2020, a total of 14,116 domestic abuse incidents were reported to Cambridgeshire Constabulary – many from parents or carers on the receiving end of abuse from young people.

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The vital work is being delivered by YMCA Trinity Group in collaboration with Cambridgeshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Darryl Preston and domestic abuse charity, Respect UK. It is one third of the county’s successful bid to the Home Office’s Domestic Abuse Perpetrator Fund, which was announced late summer.

YMCA Trinity Group is a local charity that helps young people to realise their full potential on their journey to independence.

Melanie Khan, Family Respect Project Manager at YMCA Trinity Group, said: “Across the UK and within our local communities, there is a rising number of young people carrying out acts of violence and abuse aimed at parents or other family members.

“Abuse takes many forms, and the signs are often invisible to those on the outside of it. It could be using verbal insults or threats to other family members. Alternatively, the abuse could centre on stealing money or damaging property.

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“Our Family Respect project can help those in these difficult positions. We take a systemic approach and work with the whole family to rebuild and repair relationships. Ultimately, we want to support our local community and transform young lives.”

Police and Crime Commissioner, Darryl Preston added: “As a former frontline police officer, I attended hundreds of domestic abuse incidents and know only too well the devastation this crime can cause.

“Supporting children and young people who perpetrate domestic abuse will help protect victims from further violence and keep our communities safe.

“My office worked with colleagues from partner agencies from across the county to secure the funding for this work and it is great to see YMCA Trinity Group so committed to the project.”

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Support to affected individuals will be given over a 13-week programme and will involve one-to-one sessions, collaborative family sessions, and cognitive behavioural therapy techniques.

The project forms part of a larger programme to target domestic abuse across Peterborough and Cambridgeshire. The overall effort focuses on three strands: ‘Stalking and Harassment’, ‘Healthy Relationships’, and ‘Family Respect’.

Each year, YMCA Trinity Group supports around 10,000 young and vulnerable people, and communities across Peterborough, Cambridgeshire and Suffolk. Its primary aim is to enable every young person to grow and

develop, running initiatives that tackle issues such as youth engagement, youth offending, mental health, access to employment, domestic violence, and crisis support.

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