Family violence, also known as domestic violence, can include physical, verbal, sexual or emotional abuse.
Witnessing episodes of violence between people they love can affect young children as much as if they were the victims of the violence. Even very young children can be profoundly frightened and affected.
Children who witness regular acts of family violence have greater emotional and behavioural problems than other children.
Family violence Therapeutic Interventions Pilot program
The Victorian Government is trialling new ways to provide intensive therapeutic support to women, children and their families experiencing family violence.
The new pilot projects support recommendations from the Royal Commission into Family Violence to improve accessibility, transform the way the system responds to family violence, and support family violence services to strengthen and enhance its therapeutic response to adults and children impacted by family violence.
A total of 26 projects across Victoria – including four that specifically target Aboriginal families – will be funded until June 2018.
For more information about each project read - Therapeutic interventions Demonstration projects (Word)
Family violence support services
The department provides both support services and violence prevention programs for people who have experienced family violence, through the following services:
- Family violence prevention and support services – early intervention services and post-crisis support
- Indigenous Family Violence Strategy – a community led initiative to develop a whole-of-government response to family violence in Indigenous communities. It is jointly managed by Aboriginal Affairs Victoria, the department and the Office of Women's Policy
- Men's behaviour change programs – promoting the safety of women and children and helping men to be accountable and responsible to family members, and encouraging change in men’s behaviour
- Sexual assault support services – include crisis care responses, counselling, casework, group-work, advocacy and a statewide after-hours telephone crisis service
- Sexually abusive behaviour treatment services – for children and young people under the age of 15 years who display problem sexual behaviour or sexually abusive behaviour towards others
- Court advocacy and referral – for women seeking intervention orders and also offering support to children to improve their coping skills.
These services aim to promote early intervention strategies to prevent the occurrence, or escalation of family violence and prevent the recurrence of family violence by offering post crisis support.