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Growing Futures

Project start date: March 2015

We (Doncaster Children’s Services Trust) were awarded £3.09m to reduce harm for children and young people from domestic violence and abuse (DVA) by reducing repeat victimisation, supporting perpetrators to change abusive behaviour, challenging families and communities acceptance of DVA and directly supporting recovery.

Project Summary


Children, young people and their families in Doncaster have traditionally experienced significantly higher levels of DVA in comparison with neighbouring areas, indicating a disproportionate cultural acceptance of family DVA amongst some communities.

Systems of safeguarding children, services for adults and responses to DVA do not work together or have a shared understanding of the issues facing families. This manifests in services reluctant to work with perpetrators, victims (usually mothers) being re-victimised by services that make unrealistic demands of them and fragmented provision of DVA services with limited therapeutic work for children and young people who have experienced DVA.

Our innovation has developed a partnership response and ‘way of working’ to improve outcomes for the whole family. Central to this transformation approach are the Domestic Abuse Navigators (DANs).  Although DANs have a range of tools and  therapies that can be applied to a range of situations, the role is distinct when applied to cases where DVA is present as they bring specific insight, knowledge and experience of DVA.


Although project funding ended in December 2016 it is a journey that continues today.  The programme of change is supported as a key element of Doncaster’s DVA Strategy, with the DAN role continuing to deliver direct therapeutic support, support to mainstream family support work and social care practice and challenge for partner agencies traditional working practice and behaviours which fragment and lessen the impact of joint working.


Click here to read the literature and evidence review undertaken at the start of the evaluation.


Find out more

Project contact details

Jackie Wilson

Director of Performance, Quality and Innovation

01302 735996

Project evaluators

Opcit Research, University of Central Lancashire

Project partners

Doncaster Domestic Abuse Service, Changing Lives, Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group, Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council, South Yorkshire Police, Riverside Care and Support, Rotherham Doncaster and South Humber, Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospitals, St Leger Homes, Doncaster College and University Centre, Club Doncaster Foundation



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