Reaching young people early and breaking the cycle of violence was the focus of WWP EN’s annual conference “From Harm to Hope – Youth Interventions Against Domestic Abuse”. Key elements of the 3-day programme were streamed online.
Concentrating on young people up to age 25, the conference mainly addressed two topics: working with young men who are using violence in early relationships and child/adolescent to parent violence and abuse.
The conference discussed the critical issues facing anti-violence youth interventions and explore methods for engaging and retaining young people in programmes.
It looked at ways to work with youth more effectively by connecting to their realities, including the critical role of social media, dating behaviour and sexualised violence, the influence of peers, etc.
Topics were explored through keynote speeches, panel discussions, workshops, and interactive theatre-style sessions, with lots of welcome space for networking and sharing experience.
John Doyle, MDN’s Director of Services (Client Support) extended the organisers’ appreciation to the teams from WWP EN, Men’s Development Network, MOVE Ireland, and DCU for cooperating so well together to create an informative, engaging, and enjoyable conference.
Pictured at the WWP EN annual conference in DCU (from left): Kenny Doyle, Research, Policy & Advocacy Officer; Colm Kelly Ryan, Head of Programmes and Advocacy; Seán Cooke, CEO; Marie Horgan, MEND Area Coordinator for Wexford, Waterford & South Tipperary; Michael Delaney Hennessy, MEND Area Coordinator for Carlow/Kilkenny, Laois/Offaly & Kildare, and John Doyle, Director of Services (Client Support). Aidona Photography
Adolescence and early adulthood are formative periods where young people develop strategies for dealing with disputes, both in early relationships and within the family. It is, therefore, a critical stage to address early abusive or violent behaviour. Indeed, child/adolescent violence towards parents can later become violence in intimate partnerships.
As most perpetrator programmes target adult men, there is often a lack of specialised interventions for working on intimate partner violence with a younger age group. This leads to young men being referred to adult programmes that often cannot adequately respond to their particular needs. Likewise, youth interventions may not be specialised in dealing with violence committed toward the parents.
The European Network for the Work with Perpetrators of Domestic Violence (WWP EN) was officially founded in 2014. Today it unites over 60 member organisations and is proudly active throughout Europe. Members include perpetrator programmes, researchers, as well as victim support services.
WWP EN believe that gender-based violence is a violation of women’s human rights and aim to create a gender equitable world by supporting member organisations in their work with those who choose to use violence in intimate partnerships, mostly men.