New parenting scheme to protect children at risk of domestic abuse

04 March 2013

New parenting scheme to protect children at risk of domestic abuse

The Triple P parenting initiative (Positive Parenting Programme) will be used with families

A parenting programme designed to protect children whose parents have previously been convicted of domestic abuse offences has launched at Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU). 

The two-year Alba Project is co-funded by the Scottish Government and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde and will be led by a team at GCU.

One of its main aims is to increase the safety and improve the health and wellbeing for children in families where there is a high risk of domestic abuse occurring. Recent analysis of police data suggests that of the 210,000 incidents of domestic abuse recorded by Strathclyde police over the past 8 years, children were resident in at least half of all cases.

The Alba Project will be launched at GCU between 12 -2 pm on Friday, March 1. The team led by Professor Liz Gilchrist will receive more than £100,000 from the Scottish Government to implement and evaluate a number of parenting interventions for a group convicted of domestic abuse offences.

These interventions will be based on the Triple P parenting initiative (Positive Parenting Programme) – a general scheme which is used in more than 20 countries worldwide and has now helped approximately three million children and their families.

Professor Gilchrist said: “This is an exciting opportunity to work with practitioner colleagues across the city to tackle one of the most challenging issues that faces those working in criminal justice: how to address issues of family safety and violence reduction without penalising victims or putting children at risk.

“The Triple P parenting programme is a cognitive behaviour programme focussed on improving parenting skills. We hope that by introducing this new strand of intervention to this group we can work positively with individuals who have had difficulty in managing their family relationships in the past and interrupt any intergenerational transmission of family conflict.”

The project will run at least six groups for perpetrators from across Glasgow and engage with up to three hundred clients from various groups. Forensic psychologist Professor Liz Gilchrist will be joined at the launch event by Professor Matt Sanders, the internationally-acclaimed parenting expert who created the Triple P parenting system.

Professor Sanders said: “This programme, the first of its type in the country, is about encouraging parents to make informed choices to bring about changes in their behaviour and attitudes, and improving children’s experiences."

The parenting interventions will be delivered by a team including Glasgow Criminal Justice Social Work, ASSIST (a specialist advocacy group in Glasgow) and Glasgow East Women’s Aid and supported by Strathclyde Police, Public Health Glasgow and Triple P International. The Alba Project team - drawn from GCU’s Institute for Applied Health Research and the Institute for Society and Social Justice Research – also includes Dr Sarah Landale, Dr Kerri McPherson and Tania Loureiro.

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