A number of professionals from social care, health, education and voluntary organisations from across the city attended the event, meeting with the NSPCC team to hear about the new services being offered by the children’s charity and looking at how the agencies can work together to continue protecting children and young people.
Based in North Derby Street, the innovative services will work with children, young people and families to prevent physical abuse, neglect, and abuse to under ones.
The new services include:
· Caring Dads which works with fathers who have abused or are at risk of abusing their children through the perpetration of domestic abuse against their partners. We know children are deeply traumatised by witnessing domestic abuse, even when they have not suffered violence directly.
· Family SMILES is a programme that aims to support families whose relationships have been affected by parental mental illness.
· Preventing Non-Accidental Head Injuries aims to help prevent non-accidental head injuries in babies, by educating parents about the risks of shaking and giving practical coping strategies for the pressures of new parenthood.
· Improving Parenting, Improving Practice supports vulnerable families by helping to develop their parenting skills.
NSPCC’s service centre manager in Belfast, Bronagh Muldoon, said: “This is a very exciting time for the NSPCC in Belfast. The NSPCC makes a huge difference to the lives of children across the UK and these new services will help us to expand our work and pioneer new approaches to address the child protection problems facing local children.
“These services will help to protect vulnerable local children from harm and crucially also work to prevent abuse where children are at risk. Whilst we’re committed to providing these services we know that we cannot work alone. By further developing our links with other external agencies and stakeholders we aim to ensure that the learning from our work has a long-term impact for children and young people.”