safesteps4children.org.au is an interactive, simple to navigate site designed to assist young children who have experienced family violence and are entering safe house or refuge accommodation. It features colourful imagery, simple information and stimulating play activities that introduce and explain the concept of family violence to children in an age-appropriate way, while also helping them feel comfortable in a safe house or refuge setting.
The children’s site also provides information for parents and specialist family violence support workers, including how family violence can affect children emotionally and behaviourally, how to create a safety plan that includes children, and how to help children who have witnessed violence start to recover and heal.
safesteps4youth.org.au features information specifically relevant to teens who may be experiencing family violence or dating violence. Clearly signposted sections explain what family violence and dating violence are, how to get help if you feel unsafe, advice on technology safety and answers to frequently asked questions submitted by school students.
safe steps CEO Annette Gillespie says the sites have grown out of a need to provide additional resources to children and young people both as a means of preventing family violence in the next generation, and helping those who have experienced abuse to recover and heal.
“safe steps has been helping keep children and their mothers safe from family violence by providing emergency accommodation and support services for more than 40 years,” Ms Gillespie says. “That is something we will always continue to do, but we hope these two sites can provide additional assistance to young people by acting as a resource for age-appropriate factual information and trustworthy advice.
“Educating our youth about family violence, and helping those who have experienced abuse to heal and overcome that trauma, are going to be key in breaking the cycle of violence for the next generation.”
safe steps Family Violence Response Centre CEO Annette Gillespie is available for comment.
If you or someone you care about is living with an abusive partner or family member, call safe steps Family Violence Response Centre 24/7 on 1800 015 188.