Reflective Courses for Women Who Have Experienced Domestic Abuse

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“A very helpful and friendly group.  Glad I was offered a place on the course as I now have a much clearer view of how an unhealthy relationship works so I can now heal myself and my son from our experience of domestic abuse.”

Do you believe that every woman and child deserves a life free from domestic violence?

Your local family & children’s charity Home-Start East Sussex provides crucial non-crisis services for women living in East Sussex and Brighton & Hove who have experienced domestic abuse. We believe that all women and children deserve a life free from domestic violence and abuse.

HSES started to run reflective domestic abuse courses in 2016. We identified the need while delivering our home-visiting service due to the vast number of families that had suffered or were suffering domestic abuse.

HSES has many years’ experience working with local families and we understand that a woman removing herself (and any children she may have) from her abuser is only half the battle.  She needs to be able to process, understand and be able to articulate her experience for her mental wellness, as well as recognise healthy and unhealthy relationships.  That way when she starts a new relationship, she will feel confident that she can keep herself and any children she has, free from future abuse.

The free 11 week HSES reflective domestic abuse course, based on the nationally acclaimed Freedom Programme, will support any woman who has experience of living with domestic abuse, either now or in the past.

Our next 11-week course will be held in:

  • Eastbourne – Monday mornings from 16th April. This programme is now full, please call 01273 612025 to be added to the waiting list.

 By the end of the course victim-survivors will;

  • have a better understanding of the different tactics and behaviour used by domestic abusers.
  • have a better understanding of how domestic abuse affects children (short-term and long-term), even if they are not physically hurt or in the same room when it happens.  It also details how their lives are improved when the abuse is removed
  • have a better idea about the types of positive behaviour we can expect from  ‘Mr Right’ (and what he can expect from us) when we are in a healthy relationship
  • be better able to recognise the early warning signs of domestic abuse
  • feel less isolated due to meeting other women who have shared similar experiences
  • feel more confident to have a future free from domestic abuse

I thought I was cracking up. I thought I was making it out to be worse than it is. But now I can see, I can see what it was all about.”

“My expectations were more than met.  I have had interventions and domestic violence work done in the past but nothing has compared to the intervention and help received on this course.”

“I am finding what I have been through and how I was treated wasn’t right.”

“It opened my eyes and made me make a strong decision to leave the relationship I was in by the second session”

Referrals and Information

In line with our mission, we prioritise referrals from women with children (whether or not they are currently living with them).   However, not all women who attend the courses have children.

Referrals can be made online by clicking the buttons below, or you can email for a referral form. If you wish to discuss the course or are unable to complete the form please call Sarah Jarvis on 07505 426118.  Confidentiality is always our priority to ensure the victim-survivor’s privacy.

“All other domestic abuse support in East Sussex is crisis intervention.  A lot of my clients are no longer in the abusive relationship but their experience is still affecting them.  Being able to refer them to a reflective course that will help them to understand their experience and to avoid abusive relationships in the future is really beneficial.”

Apply online

Self referral form

Agency referral form

We have limited funding to offer victim-survivors with preschool children who live in East Sussex (not Brighton & Hove as yet, regrettably) weekly support in her home, in Refuge or leaving Refuge where it is safe to do so.  This would be via our volunteer home-visiting service.

Domestic Violence Against Women

  • Every year 1 million women in the UK experience at least one incident of domestic abuse
  • Women experience an average of 35 incidence of domestic abuse before reporting an incident to the police
  • 1 in 4 women in England will experience domestic violence in their lifetimes
  • Based on national figures, it is estimated that 6,500 children are exposed to domestic abuse each year in East Sussex
  • In the 12 months to the end of September 2014, a total of 7152 domestic abuse incidents and crimes were reported in East Sussex
  • Domestic abuse happens in all communities regardless of deprivation, education, age, sexuality, ethnicity or ability.  Between October 2013 and September 2014 a total of 527 were discussed at Multi Agency Risk Assessment Conference (MARACs) 98% were female, 2% were male, 7% were registered disabled, 12% were BME, 3% were LGBT

So what does HSES do about this? It’s our charity’s aim to support or signpost every woman who asks for our help. Once free from her abuser, she can start to build better lives for herself and her child/children.