Family Report Impact

2013 - 2014
charity number 1071132
2013 - 2014
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Reference and administrative details
Impact update
Chief Executive Officer
Administration Team
Child Contact Interventions
Ear 4 U
Family Support Team and Supported Contact
Options and IDVA
Separated Parents Information Programme
Support 4 Separated Parents Helpline
Future Developments
Produced in-house with environmental awareness and cost in mind, in black & white on chlorine free bleached paper from sustainable forests
2013 - 2014
Registered Company number
03453149 (England and Wales)
Registered Charity number
Registered office
35 West Sunniside
Tyne & Wear
K Younghusband Chair
Mrs J Heckles
Vice Chair
T Lee Gough
S F Lincoln
Mrs D Mcknight
P Stewart
P Shreyhane
M Atkinson
L Watson
appointed 1/03/14
appointed 1/10/13
Company Secretary
G Docherty
TTR Barnes Limited
Chartered Accountants and Registered Auditors
3-5 Grange Terrace
Stockton Road
Tyne & Wear
Chief Executive Officer
Hazel Hedley
Impact Family
Services Update
2013 - 2014
Impact Family Services Update
IFS is a charity based in Northern England that focuses on family and relationships,
with particular reference to family breakdown/parental separation and the reasons for
this. We have centres in Sunderland, South Shields and Scarborough and offer
additional outreach services in Durham, Newcastle, Gateshead, Middlesbrough,
Harrogate and York.
During 2013 our services supported 3277 parents or children, broken down as:
Supported Child Contact Centres: 332 parents and 327 children used our six
centres. Families usually stay with us on average 3-6 months before moving on to
having unsupervised contact in the community. The majority are new cases, although
small numbers may return if community contact breaks down.
Child Contact Interventions: this team works with more entrenched families when
supported contact would not be suitable. They facilitate supervised contact and direct
work with children including life-story work and wishes and feelings reports. During
2013 the team received 81 private referrals, involving 107 children and 162 parents;
and 80 referrals from Cafcass, involving 104 children and 160 parents. Again the
average family stays with us between 3-6 months, usually moving on to supported
Family Mediation Service: 488 assessments were carried out and 54 cases (108
adults) went on to successfully mediate. The process usually takes up to 3 months.
Options Advocacy & Advice Service: Options is our outreach service for victims
of domestic abuse that live in South Tyneside. 1003 referrals were received into the
women’s support service during 2013. 583 engaged with the service. Many women
stay with the service for an average of 3 months, although more complex and high risk
cases can stay with us for 2-3 years.
Respect Young Peoples Programme: This programme addresses child to parent
violence and had 31 referrals. Of these 7 completed, 12 are currently active, 8
dropped out and 5 did not start. The popularity of this programme is growing, and in
January 2014 we received 13 referrals and have a target to engage 75 families this
year. Families usually work with the team over a 3 month period.
Separated Parents Information Programme: 928 parents attended this
programme during 2013. The programme consists of two sessions of 2.5 hours
duration or one session of 4.5 hours and encourages parents to look at the effects of
conflict on their children .
South Tyneside Domestic Abuse Perpetrators Programme: 19 men
completed the programme in the twelve month period and another 36 men were open
at various stages. The full programme is 34 weeks from first assessment to
Report from the Chair
2013 - 2014
I concluded our previous report by saying that the year ahead would be challenging
for Impact. I was right. Changes to Family Law and Government cuts to legal aid have
had consequences for both the public and the service. Hazel has outlined in her
report the effects on mediation and those in need of protection from violence and
those who are trying to seek resolutions to contact problems. It does not help to
resolve difficult family issues by having litigants appear in Court unrepresented with all
the issues being dealt with in a confrontational manner.
Fund raising is becoming increasingly challenging for Impact, as it is for most
charities. Hazel and her team have been brilliant in finding funding sources, although
this year we were obliged to dip into our reserves to continue the services we provide.
We were able to look at our business and introduce changes to help to improve the
There have been changes to the Board of Trustees. Our two Scarborough Trustees
have stepped down my thanks and good wishes go to them. I am pleased to welcome
two new Trustees Malcolm Atkinson and Tom Lee-Gough who has taken on the office
of Treasurer. I would like to thank all the Trustees for their help and support during
this year.
My thanks go to Hazel and her staff and volunteers for their hard work and dedication.
They have met and taken on the changes that have been made and adapted to the
many changes in the service.
I know that Emma Clark was awarded South Tyneside CVS volunteer of the year
award. I congratulate her. This was wonderful for her and reflected well on Impact. For
myself I feel that all the volunteers deserve praise and thanks for their dedicated work.
They are the greatest asset that the voluntary sector has. They give of their time to
help others.
My thanks to all those who have made donations to Impact. On a personal note I
would like to thank those who put money into my collection bucket at the bag pack. It
was a great chance for me to work with the volunteers. I enjoyed it.
I would hope that the coming 12 months will see an improvement in things and that
the service will continue to help and assist those who are in need of it. The work this
charity does is so important.
Keith Younghusband
Chief Executive
2013 - 2014
Chief Executive Officer’s Annual Report 2013-14
The financial year 2013-14 has been a challenging year for Impact Family Services.
Although we continued to meet our charitable objectives and have been able to
develop, maintain and grow most core services, this meant using a small amount of
reserves to achieve this. Last year we referred to the Government’s fundamental and
far-reaching restructure of the family justice system. Major changes in this area have
continued during 2013-14, which have impacted upon organisations such as Impact
Family Services who support separated families and those impacted by domestic
violence and abuse.
The Legal Aid restructure has had significant impact on both parents using the family
courts for child contact issues and for women who have fled domestic violence but do
not have the evidence to prove this.
The aim of the changes in terms of child contact issues was to encourage parents to
avoid using family courts “as a first port of call” and instead explore alternative dispute
resolution services, such as mediation, and other out of court settlements. The reality
however was a sharp increase in ‘litigants in person’ in the family court system. Here
at Impact Family Services there was a sharp decline in referrals to our Family
Mediation Service and to a lesser extent to supported child contact centres. The other
extreme was that the Courts and Cafcass saw a steep increase in referrals which
resulted in a bumper year for us in terms of both supervised child contact interventions
and parents ordered to attend the Separated Parents Information Programme (SPIP).
For victims of domestic violence and abuse the impact of legal aid changes has
perhaps been more damaging. Although legal aid remains available for victims who
meet certain criteria, research informs us that a woman usually experiences an
average of 35 incidents before even disclosing the abuse. Our Options service has
therefore witnessed a rise in the number of service users seeking our support who are
no longer able to access free legal advice. Their circumstances are often further
compounded by additional risks linked to child contact issues.
The CEO, working alongside the Trustees, has had to adapt the strategic and
operational activities in line with wider social policy change. This is to enable us to
attract and secure more sustainable income streams, whilst making best use of the
human resources available to achieve the most effective and efficient delivery of our
services. We were fortunate in securing a three year contract with Cafcass to deliver
the SPIP to parents having attended Sunderland, South Tyneside or Gateshead
Courts in the North East and for those attending Harrogate, York and Scarborough
Courts in North Yorkshire. The latter brought much needed financial security to our
staff based in Scarborough, whom had joined the charity in September 2012.
In May 2013 we brought together our staff from our head office in Sunderland and the
Family Support Team, who were been based in the child contact centre at Pallion. We
moved to larger premises at 35 West Sunniside, which meant that we are able to offer
all our services under one roof. We received funding from BIG Awards for All towards
the refurbishment of the new head office, particularly aimed at rooms to support parents.
Chief Executive
2013 - 2014
In September we were also tasked with being a pilot for the new out of court Dispute
Resolution Separated Parents Information Programme (DRSPIP), meaning we could
offer this programme free of charge to parents in our North East catchment area when
there were child contact issues but the parents had not ventured to court. This allows
us to promote the new service via our child contact and mediation services as well as
in the wider community. This tied in well with funding from Northern Rock Foundation
to pilot a new scheme called First Steps Dispute Resolution Service, which takes a
whole family approach to parental separation.
We received grant funding from the Tyne & Wear Community Foundation towards
running our child contact centres, piloting a new programme for women called ‘Just
Me’ and from their P&G Fund a special pot of money which we can use for victims of
domestic violence who have to move home. Additionally we received £3000 from the
organisation ‘North’ and this, added to our own fundraising activities, means that we
can offer domestic violence victims a range of invaluable support including lock
changes, removals, kennel fees and help with carpets and blinds. We have launched
a small counselling service for women using Options and also have volunteers who
are offering benefits advice and free legal advice.
February 2014 saw the launch of the new Northumberland and Tyne & Wear Support
for Separated Parents Helpline (S4SP) in partnership with Cafcass. This is a free
phone Helpline which is answered by experienced staff who are able to steer parents
towards out of court solutions in their area. The Helpline will be evaluated during
2014-15 by the Cafcass Policy & Research Team.
During the final quarter of the year the organisation went through a small restructure in
order to make it more streamlined for 2014-15, ensuring the right staff are in place to
meet our targets within the funding available. We go into the next financial year with
confidence and look forward to the opportunities that will come our way. We are
particularly keen to further develop our partnership work.
Hazel Hedley
Chief Executive Officer
2013 - 2014
The Administration Team
No organisation can work effectively without the support of an efficient and quality
admin team, who are the backbone of the organisation. We would like to sincerely
thank each and everyone of them for supporting practitioners and making the
organisation run smoothly – from booking venues for SPIP’s; financial returns to
funders and contractors; to being the face of Impact when people walk through the
We are fortunate to have a small army of volunteers who work alongside staff in our
service delivery.
Options: volunteers are involved in our new counselling service; running groupwork
programmes, admin and supporting victims on a one to one basis
Supported Child Contact Centres: volunteers are involved in running our child contact
centres on a Saturday, supporting parents and children to make contact a safe and
enjoyable experience for many.
We are always looking to recruit new volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering
opportunities please contact:
Options – Julie Robinson, Co-ordinator on 0191 4567577
Child contact centres, North East – Margaret Welch, Family Support Manager on
0191 4567577
Child contact centre, Scarborough – Helen Evans on 01723 377388
Volunteers are offered training opportunities, supervision and an experienced mentor.
All volunteers are subject to a DBS check at enhanced level. We really appreciate
their support and recognise that the service could not operate without them.
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Child Contact
2013 - 2014
Child Contact Interventions
Some separating families have a range of complex issues which often need some
intervention via CAFCASS and the Family Courts. Impact is contracted by CAFCASS
to undertake a range of work with families to help them with their decision making.
The team consists of 2 full-time social workers, sessional social workers and family
support workers, supported by students on placement from the Durham University
Master of Social Work programme. Written reports are made of our observations of
contact which are used in the Family Court to help make more informed decisions
about the children.
The team offers a range of contact options so that individual family needs can be met,
such as:
Supervised child contact: with the supervisor in constant sight and sound of the
child. We offer venues that provide privacy and confidentiality to each family and
sessions are structured to provide maximum safety to all concerned and maximum
stimulation for children. Contact is time limited with a planned aim to regularly assess
and review progress and the possibility of safer future outcomes. Written feedback of
each session is provided.
Preparation for contact sessions: for a child and/or parents as required. These
often include life-story work where a child has little or no knowledge of their
non-resident parent or birth family. The work will focus on establishing what a child
knows about their family and then building upon it. The team will work in a child
focused and age appropriate way to help the child understand their identity. Life-story
work can be used as a stepping stone for future contact arrangements.
Indirect contact: used where direct contact is either unsafe, unworkable and/or not
in the child’s best interests. The parent or other family member can contact a child
through a third party by way of letters, cards, gifts and emails. Two members of staff
will be responsible for supervising and managing each case to determine the type and
frequency of indirect contact that safeguards and promotes a child’s best interests.
Escorted Contact: is introduced after a regular, safe and sustainable pattern of
contact has been established. It involves the child and non-resident parent being
accompanied on visits to places such as local parks, shops and restaurants by a
member of staff. Each centre has a proposed list of suitable sites to visit which have
been risk assessed.
Interventions are available via our Child Contact Intervention teams for both Cafcass
referrals and private paying families. These services are available in Sunderland,
Scarborough, Newcastle and Middlesbrough. Referrals can be discussed with staff in
both Sunderland and Scarborough offices.
Changes to the family justice system have resulted in an increase in the use of these
interventions and we have experienced an exceptionally busy year breaking all
records in terms of number of referrals, successfully working with 161 families,
involving 533 individual family members.
Ear 4 U
2013 - 2014
Ear 4 U
Ear 4 U is the name of our service that works with children and young people, which
has the following three elements:
Respect Young People’s Programme (RYPP): is a programme for families
where young people (10 to 15 years old) are aggressive towards people close to them
– like their brothers, sisters, parents or carers. This includes behaviour like hitting,
making threats, damaging things in the home and financial and emotional abuse.
Both parents and young people want help that is brief, effective and avoids blaming
them – they want to end up feeling better, not worse. In the RYPP, both parent and
young person are seen as part of the solution. The RYPP provides support, insight,
simple solutions and improvements to family relationship problems, many of which
have been building up for years.
RYPP is funded by the National Lottery Realising Ambition fund and is a partnership
between Respect, the Social Research Unit Dartington and the Youth Foundation.
Funding was received in 2012 and the programme is funded until 2016. Respect are
working with 5 partners across northern England to test the programme and Impact
Family Services are delighted to be part of this pilot.
RYPP is available to families living in both Sunderland and South Tyneside. We
accept self referrals and referrals from other agencies who are working with families.
Our target for 2014-15 is to work with 75 families every year. Two workers are
involved in the direct service delivery, usually one supporting the parent and the other
with the young person, although a number of sessions are delivered jointly. We are
finding the programme to be really successful and making a huge difference to a
number of families in our region. It has also attracted a lot of media attention and we
have had articles in the local newspapers, local and national radio and TV.
Ear 4 U – Grangetown School. Impacts Ear 4 U Team have been delivering a
unique project in Grangetown Primary School for the last three years. The project
focuses upon a group of children who are identified by the school as having additional
needs to allow them to meet their full potential. This can be because of a level of
learning difficulties, disability, home circumstances or a mixture of all. The model has
been developed in conjunction with the Deputy Head to ensure that it meets the
needs of the children involved. The project works with the children via a Behaviour &
Emotional Support Group, one to one support and a core programme of anti-bullying.
The school have consistently reported that the project impacts positively upon the
children involved, both on personal confidence levels and academic achievement. The
school received outstanding in their Ofsted report for the emotional support given to
the children and our project was named in the report. The one to one work has also
been invaluable for those children subject to Child Protection Plans:
Ear 4 U
2013 - 2014
‘The work feeding into the Core Group meetings and CP Plans has been
invaluable in supporting our most vulnerable pupils and I feel as a school
we have supported these pupils in a way which ordinarily would not have
been implemented by Children's Services. We have been able to "plug
the gaps" in support offered to our children’. Lesley Cole – Deputy Head
The project has been so successful that the school has now identified that for the new
academic year they wish to employ someone full time in the role. We wish them
every success with this.
Anti Bullying Packages: we deliver a number of preventative courses throughout
the year in schools across the City of Sunderland. We also monitor training provided
to pupils around anti bullying awareness and friendship buddy training. All sessions
are delivered within the school setting and aim to create a whole school approach in
reducing bullying behaviour and other social issues with children and young people.
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Family Support &
Supported Contact
2013 - 2014
The Family Support Team & Supported Child Contact Centres
A supported child contact centre is a safe, friendly, neutral venue where children of
separated families can spend time with one or both parents and sometimes other
family members. Contact sessions usually last for one and a half hours, there are
often other families in the contact room. Our contact centres have comfortable warm
rooms equipped with toys that cater for wide age ranges and cultures. The most
important people in the centre are the children and we hope that they will have good
memories and feelings about their visits.
During 2013 we operated supported child contact centres in Sunderland,
Scarborough, South Tyneside, Newcastle, Durham and Middlesbrough. Each centre
has a lead member of staff who is supported by a team of volunteers. We receive an
annual grant from Cafcass for each centre and additionally each parent is charged a
small fee for using the facilities. In addition to this funding Mary Hind, Centre
Co-ordinator, ran the Great North Run in 2013 and raised £400, which we used to
refurbish our Sunderland centre. All of our centres are accredited by the National
Association of Child Contact Centres (NACCC), which means that we work to their
national standards to provide high quality and safe services.
The Family Support Team oversee the running of our supported centres and facilitate
the SPIPs in both the North East and North Yorkshire areas. The team consists of the
Manager, a Co-ordinator and Support Workers for both Mother’s and Father’s.
Additionally we have a team of loyal and dedicated volunteers, without whom we
could not run these guidance and support services. These posts are funded by
Northern Rock Foundation (Mother’s) and Tudor Trust (Father’s).
Impact has been one of 26 supported contact centres nationally that have taken part
in a new pilot project. The NACCC Safe Referral system allows parents to make a
referral on-line via NACCC’s website. These are then carefully screened to ensure
they are suitable for a supported contact centre. The final decision to accept a family,
or not, always lies with the centre itself.
169 families used our centres during 2013-14. The staff team work closely with
families using our centres, addressing issues which may stop the contact moving on
and encouraging them to try family mediation and SPIPs to help them focus on the
needs of the children. We are also finding the Parenting Plan is a useful tool for
parents to use when making decisions about the children.
The organisation has always financially supported our child contact centres and
recognised their worth to separated families. However, as a result of financial
constraints during the year the Trustees and Senior Management Team reviewed its
services and value for money. It was decided the Middlesbrough and Durham centres
would close as they had the fewest families using them; were furthest away in terms
of distance and are areas where we do little or no other work. The Co-ordinator was
made redundant and redeployed into the admin team. We hope that this restructure
will allow our supported child contact centres to survive for the foreseeable future.
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2013 - 2014
Family Mediation Service
There is now a strong emphasis from Courts and the Government on families
resolving issues in mediation: Family Mediation is a voluntary and confidential
process which supports joint decision making away from the court setting. Each
individual remains in control of the decision making process and reach proposals with
their former partner with the help of an impartial third party, a fully trained Mediator.
You don’t have to be married or have children to use the service. Mediation is also
available for same sex former partners, grandparents and other family members.
Mediation can assist with things such as:
Property and finances, including pensions, assets and liabilities
Planning a separation, divorce or dissolution of a civil partnership
Parenting arrangements
The time children spend with family members
What to say to children
Finding out the views of children and young people
There is an expectation that parting couples try mediation to see if they can make
decisions themselves prior to making a court application. Impact offers Family
Mediation in Sunderland, South Tyneside, Gateshead and Scarborough. We have a
team of qualified Family Mediators and 3 trainees who are supervised by a
Professional Practice Consultant. (PPC)
During 2013-14 the overwhelming changes in family justice in England and Wales had
a significant impact on family mediation services nationally, with many closing. Impact
experienced a 50% decrease in referrals but were fortunate that our
business model and staff experiences meant that we were able to divert staff time in
to other areas of the organisation.
In March we said goodbye to Stefan Klidzia who had been our PCC for 7 years. Our
sincere thanks go to Stefan. From April Jackie Norton replaced him. Jackie already
worked with us as a family mediator, and brings with her many years of experience as
a PPC and a trainer nationally for National Family Mediation. The Children & Family
Act 2014 came into being on 22nd April 2014 and there is now a compulsion for
separating couples to attend a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting
(MIAM) before applying to Court. Legal Aid is still available for Family Mediation.
Following receipt of a referral an initial meeting with each party is held where
information is given about mediation and parties can make an informed decision
about whether mediation could be a good way forward. There is no obligation or
commitment to continue with the process, but it is always a good idea to attend to find
out more about mediation, a Mediator can also assess your eligibility for legal aid.
Impact Family Mediation Service looks forward to supporting more families during
2014-15 and are already looking to increase the number of Family Mediators available.
Options & IDVA
2013 - 2014
Options and IDVA
The Options Service, is an outreach women’s service in South Tyneside for victims of
domestic violence and abuse. The project saves lives and increases the safety and
well being of women and children. Other than calls to the police, Options is the first
point of contact for the majority of victims of domestic abuse, including self referrals or
referrals from child protection social work teams, housing department, refuge, and
Victim Support.
Living with domestic violence and abuse impacts negatively on all family members in
numerous ways, yet it is often hidden inside the family home only coming to the
attention of statutory agencies when things have escalated into the child protection
arena. Women can suffer from a range of abusive behaviours including psychological,
physical, sexual, emotional and financial impacting on both physical and mental
health; getting or keeping a job; and parenting capacity. Research also informs us that
children living in a household where DV is an issue tend to do less well at school;
have difficulty forming friendships and relationships (including later in life); more likely
to become involved in offending behaviour, teenage pregnancy and substance
Impact took over the running of Options in August 2012 and we have worked with the
team to understand the latest research and best practice and listened to service users
to enable us to develop the service accordingly. The majority of this work has taken
place during 2013-14 and by the end of the year we have a structure which we feel
can meet the needs of a range of victims, yet takes into consideration current funding
restrictions and funding opportunities. We can offer one to one support, a range of
group work programmes and have launched a new counselling service, “The Place To
Be” specifically for Options clients.
Options offers a duty system which ensures that women are offered an appointment
within 48 hours of referral. An initial assessment of risk and need is carried out using
the Home Office approved Risk Indicator Checklist (RIC) and bespoke packages
offered to meet individual need – choosing from a range of one to one support and
group work: supporting women through the court process; assisting with safe child
contact issues; help with refuge space or rehousing; accessing legal advice/
injunctions, counselling; finding temporary care for pets; keeping victims informed of
bail conditions and results of court hearings.
In addition Options also hosts the borough’s Independent Domestic Violence
Advocate Service, which works closely with the police and partner agencies to support
high risks victims, including support via the Specialist Domestic Violence Court.
During the financial year 2013-14 we saw the number of women using our service
increase by 52.1%, from 265 to 403 compared to the previous year. We have seen
changes in the range of needs of our service users and we believe at least in part this
is due to changes in the availability of legal aid for family law, which means that
women can no longer access legal advice and are having to make unsafe child
contact arrangements for the children. We have been fortunate to recruit volunteers
who are able to provide legal and benefits advice.
Options & IDVA
2013 - 2014
We have also been heavily involved in fundraising opportunities, such as bag packing
in the local supermarket and hosting evening events. Monies raised have gone into
our ‘emergency pot’ which can provide lock changes or taxis to refuges to women and
children when risks are at their highest. Via the Tyne & Wear Community Foundation
we also received a pot of funding from Proctor & Gamble which can help victims buy
essential items when they have to move home. The local firm ‘North’ also donated
£3000 for this fund.
In July 2013 we commenced using the CAADA Insights data management system,
which means by June 2014 we will have a full year of reporting on the effectiveness of
our interventions. Our Options Co-ordinator is also undertaking a Women’s Service
Manager qualification and we are working towards gaining Leading Lights
accreditation, all through CAADA.
The Options Service is predominantly funded by South Tyneside Council Public
Health Department. However another important funder has been the Northern Rock
Foundation over the past six years and it with great sadness that we say goodbye to a
foundation that has helped so many local charities over the years. The loss of NRF
funding has meant that we have had to restructure the team and have lost one part
time keyworker post. We have an outstanding bid to the National Lottery Reaching
Communities funding stream and we are working with South Tyneside Adult &
Community Learning regarding funding our group work.
Currently the team consists of a full time Co-ordinator; 1.6 IDVA; 0.4 keyworker and
0.4 Admin worker and a host of fabulous volunteers, without whom we would not be
able to offer our services.
Here is some feedback from our service users:
“I would like to say thank you for the support given and guiding me to a better place –
I have a full new lifestyle and feel amazing”
It has opened my mind to domestic abuse and the ways a perpetrator behaves and
the effects it has on children – I believe this programme is an absolute godsend to
women like me”.
“I told myself that the children were not affected by the abuse, but now I understand
that they are. Doing this course has helped me talk better to my children and we are
all happier”
During 2014-15 we would like to begin developing services for children effected by
domestic violence and abuse in the home and further develop our group work
programmes, volunteering opportunities and partnerships with other providers.
Separated Parents
2013 - 2014
Separated Parents Information Programme
Separated Parents Information Programmes (SPIPs) are designed to help parents
learn more about the challenges of post-separation parenting, including the effects on
children of ongoing conflict. It aims to provide tips and support about how best to help
children in this situation and enables parents to take steps towards their own
solutions. The majority of parents who attend find it very helpful, it is always important
that both parents attend a SPIP.
The SPIP can be 2 sessions, lasting between 2 – 2 ½ hours each, normally over a
period of two weeks and participants must attend part one before part two. In some
areas it can be 1 session of 4½ hours.
This programme is available to parents who have been party to a court application in
a Family Court regarding child contact arrangements in private law cases and the
court has directed them to attend. Impact contracted with Cafcass to deliver the SPIP
in Sunderland, South Tyneside, Gateshead, Harrogate, York and Scarborough.
In September we were tasked with being a pilot for the new out of court Dispute
Resolution Separated Parents Information Programme (DRSPIP). We can offer this
programme free of charge to parents in our North East catchment area as a pre-court
way of resolving issues. We are able to promote this new service via our child contact
and mediation services as well as in the wider community.
Impact received an unprecedented number of referrals for SPIPs and in total over the
year we delivered the programme to 928 parents or significant other adults. This is
broken down as follows:
North East: 407 court ordered and 33 DRSPIP, total 440
North Yorkshire: 488 court ordered
Many thanks to all the staff who contributed to the success of this programme. More
than 96% of people who attended said that they enjoyed the programme and got
something useful out of it.
S4SP Helpline
2013 - 2014
Support 4 Separated Parents Helpline (S4SP)
In February 2014 Cafcass commissioned services were approached about taking part
in an exciting new pilot project to provide a Freephone telephone helpline service for
separating families who live in Northumberland and Tyne & Wear. Impact Family
Services expressed an interest in the project and have worked closely with the Cafcass
Head of Service to develop it and roll it out.
The S4SP Helpline operates Monday
to Friday from 11 am to 7 pm and we
have a rota of qualified and
experienced staff to handle calls.
We have commissioned Quay 2
Media to support us in the publicity of
the project and we will be producing
newsletters to report to partners about
it’s progress. There have been
numerous press releases as well as
radio interviews and even an advert on
the back of buses in the area!
The aim of the helpline is to provide advice and support on a range of dispute
resolution alternatives, such as family mediation, and separated parent’s information
programmes. We also signpost to locally delivered services who have the
expertise to help and encourage parents to achieve the best outcomes for their
children, and where possible avoid using the family courts.
A DVD advertising the service has been shown in post offices across Northumberland.
2013 - 2014
South Tyneside Domestic Abuse Perpetrator Programme (STDAPP):
STDAPP is a partnership between Impact and Barnardo’s Streetlevel Project, with
both organisations providing a ‘virtual team’. It is a voluntary programme for men who
acknowledge they have behaved abusively in their intimate relationships and want to
change. The programme was launched in September 2006, with both
organisations being involved from the development stages, along with statutory
agencies: Northumbria Police, Public Health, Probation Service and the Local
Authority. STDAPP received Respect Accreditation in December 2011.
Upon receipt of a referral checks are made with the local authority safeguarding
teams and Northumbria Police. Four one to one meetings then take place to assess
suitability for the programme, risk assessment and motivation. If suitable the man
proceeds onto a four week pre-group programme before joining a rolling 26 week core
group programme. Once the assessment process commences a referral is made to
Options for partners/ex partners. STDAPP and Options Co-ordinators work closely
together in order to manage risk.
The four members of Impact staff are involved in: provision and participation in clinical
supervision; one to one assessments; co-facilitating pre group programme;
co-facilitating core group programme; participation in practitioner meetings;
participation in management and strategy meetings; report writing;
attendance at child protection meetings; attendance at MARAC and participation in
joint risk assessment meetings with Options Women’s Service.
Both STDAPP and Options are overseen by a Steering Group which meets
bi-monthly. It is chaired by the Public Health Commissioning Manager. Also
represented on the group are: a DI Northumbria Police; Team Manager Northumbria
Probation Trust; South Tyneside DV Co-ordinator; Team Manager Health & Social
Care; CEO Impact Family Services; Assistant Director Barnardo’s; Service Manager
Barnardo’s; STDAPP Co-ordinator and the Options Co-ordinator. This multi agency
approach ensures a co-ordinated response to tackling issues linked to domestic
abuse and our approach supports Children & Young Peoples Plan, Community Safety
Plan, Violence Against Women & Girls Strategy and the Public Health agenda.
Since 2011 Impact has received funding from the Henry Smith Charity via the Tyne &
Wear Community Foundation for our involvement in STDAPP. We are delighted that
they agreed to fund us for a further three years from April 2014. Additionally The
Lankelly Chase Foundation gave us a grant towards paying for evening sessional
workers. Funding from these two vital sources has allowed us to continue this
essential work in making men accountable for their behaviour and increasing the
safety of women and children.
2013 - 2014
Men attending the project are offered four one to one assessment meetings, followed
by four weeks in a pre group, before entering a 26 week rolling group work
programme. Pre groups are held every 8-12 weeks, depending upon numbers and
new men join the core group at the beginning of a module. (with the exception of
modules on children or sexual respect) There are 6 modules of 4 weeks duration and
the 7th module is two weeks. The areas covered are: Defining, Analysing & Ending
Abusive Behaviours (2 modules); Effects on Children; Respect, Trust and Support;
Sexual Respect; Honesty, Accountability and Partnership; Future Conduct.
During 2013-14 we received 84 referrals and 16 men completed the programme. The
majority of referrals are received from local authority social workers, followed by self
referral (mainly from men involved with child protection agencies) and thirdly referrals
from Family Court/Cafcass for men seeking contact with a child/children when a
relationship has ended. As a charity that works exclusively within the framework of
families and relationships we have an expertise and understanding of the links
between domestic abuse and family breakdown, and of the impact this has on
children’s development and emotional well-being. The reality is that approximately
half the men referred to the programme are not ready to acknowledge their abusive
behaviour and either drop out in the one to one stages or are found to be not suitable
for the programme. Of the 84 referrals we received there were 46 children involved +
2 unborn; 34 of the children had social work involvement; 9 were subject to a child
protection plan; 18 were Looked After Children and 7 Children in Need.
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2013 - 2014
Future Developments
The Trustees remain committed to the development of services and projects that fit
within the core objectives of the Charity. We work with children and families where
separation and/or domestic violence is an issue. We also deliver anti bullying workshops to children in a school setting which looks at developing healthy relationships.
In future we will develop new services where funding has been identified, and explore
opportunities for further partnership work. We have identified a need for the following
The BIG Project:
A partnership between Barnardo’s, Impact and Gentoo. This is a voluntary
perpetrator programme for men who admit they have used abusive behaviours within
an intimate relationship and wish to change. It would be available in the City Of Sunderland and we are working with Northumbria Police, Sunderland Council and Health
Authority to identify funding. In addition we will explore partnership working with
Wearside Women in Need to support the women involved.
Gateshead Family Hub:
We are working in partnership with CAB Gateshead, Relate (Northumberland &
Newcastle) and NE Counselling Service to explore the development of a one stop
shop. This service is for parents who are separating/separated and offers a range of
support and dispute resolution services within Gateshead. We have appointed an independent consultant to research the need for this project and will use the findings to
apply for funding.
South Tyneside GPDV Link Project:
South Tyneside Council have received funding from the Police & Crime Commissioner
to develop a new service to link with GP surgeries in the borough. This will develop
earlier intervention and referral into DV support services for victims. Options will lead
on this piece of work. (September 2014)
Change 4 Women:
This is an exciting new development which is being funded by Esmee Fairbairn
Foundation and is a partnership between Impact, Respect and the University of
Manchester. We are working with women who have identified themselves as using
abusive behaviour in their intimate relationship. We want to build upon the limited
research already done in this area, to further understand the issues and develop
programmes to support change. We have received 18 months funding from June
2014 to develop this work, report on the findings and share this with other interested
parties via a conference to be held in Manchester.
National Lottery – Reaching Communities:
We have bid for funding for the Options Service, including the development of
programmes for children affected by DV. We anticipate the outcome by November
South Tyneside Business & Employment Skills:
We are working with Adult & Community Learning to develop a range of programmes
for family members who have been affected by either separation or domestic abuse.
2013 - 2014
Impact Family Services
Statement of Financial Activities for the year end March 2014
INCOME 2013/2014
Wages and Salaries
Travel expenses and refreshments
£ 6,859
£ 4,940
Rent and Rates
£ 39,177
Heat, light and power
£ 8,304
Telephone and IT costs
£ 21,758
Printing, Postage and stationery
£ 7,836
Office Repairs and Maintenance
£ 15,090
£ 3,832
£ 3,050
Grants payable and client expenditure
£ 14,713
Advertising and fundraising costs
£ 7,670
Professional fees, consultants and subscriptions
£ 29,826
Other costs
£ 3,904
Bank charges
£ 26,038
2013 - 2014
Impact Family Services have a number of important partnerships with whom we work to
either deliver services or support us financially. During 2013-14 the following
partnerships took place:
Local Family Justice Boards Northumbria and North Yorkshire
Family Courts
South Tyneside Domestic Violence Forum
Sunderland DV Partnership
Northern Rock Foundation
Tyne & Wear Community Foundation
Henry Smith Charity
Lankelly Chase
Legal Aid Agency
South Tyneside Council
Sunderland Counselling Services
Chase Homes
Morrison’s South Shields
Grangetown Primary School
Newcastle City Council
Middlesbrough Council
University of Durham
Stewart Parker – Richard Nelson LLB
Gateshead CAB
Relate Northumberland and Newcastle
NE Counselling Services
Lions Ladies Scarborough
Yorkshire Coast Homes
Proudfoot Scarborough
Crown Property
Hull University
Yorkshire Coast College
Scarborough Sixth Form
North Yorkshire County Council
Impact Family Services
35 West Sunniside
Impact Family Services
Beach Road
South Shields
NE33 2QA
Impact Family Services
2 Pavilion Square
YO11 2JN