V.I.P. (Violence Is Preventable) Project

Competition Finalist

This entry has been selected as a finalist in the
No Private Matter! Ending Abuse in Intimate & Family Relations competition.

We have developed and evaluated a range of resources for use with children aged 3 to 18 plus vulnerable adults. The message that violence is preventable runs throughout the programmes. The programmes help young people, children and adults explore, in a fun and age appropriate manner, violence in all its forms including bullying, domestic abuse, sexual abuse, physical abuse and include work on gender issues, racism, sexism, sectarianism, homophobia, and other issues that might lead to violence in society. As children mature they are led towards exploring the roots of violence, relationships, conflict resolution and alternatives to violence in personal, community, national and international relationships. They are encouraged to see the links between different types of violence and seek solutions for themselves and others. Violence is explored from the different perspective of the victim, the perpetrator and the witness and interventions and solutions sought by the young people.

About You

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Location

Project Street Address

Project City

Project Province/State

Project Postal/Zip Code

Project Country

n/a

Your idea

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Focus of activity

Education

Year the initiative began

1998

Position your initiative on the mosaic of solutions

Which of these barriers is the primary focus of your work?

Culture Of Acceptance

Which of the insights is the primary focus of your work?

Create Paths to Prevention or Remediation

If you believe some other barrier or insight should be included in the mosaic, please describe it and how it would affect the positioning of your initiative in the mosaic

Identifying the roots of violence

Name Your Project

V.I.P. (Violence Is Preventable) Project

Describe Your Idea

We have developed and evaluated a range of resources for use with children aged 3 to 18 plus vulnerable adults. The message that violence is preventable runs throughout the programmes. The programmes help young people, children and adults explore, in a fun and age appropriate manner, violence in all its forms including bullying, domestic abuse, sexual abuse, physical abuse and include work on gender issues, racism, sexism, sectarianism, homophobia, and other issues that might lead to violence in society. As children mature they are led towards exploring the roots of violence, relationships, conflict resolution and alternatives to violence in personal, community, national and international relationships. They are encouraged to see the links between different types of violence and seek solutions for themselves and others. Violence is explored from the different perspective of the victim, the perpetrator and the witness and interventions and solutions sought by the young people.

Innovation

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Description of Initiative

We have developed and evaluated a range of resources for use with children aged 3 to 18 plus vulnerable adults. The message that violence is preventable runs throughout the programmes. The programmes help young people, children and adults explore, in a fun and age appropriate manner, violence in all its forms including bullying, domestic abuse, sexual abuse, physical abuse and include work on gender issues, racism, sexism, sectarianism, homophobia, and other issues that might lead to violence in society. As children mature they are led towards exploring the roots of violence, relationships, conflict resolution and alternatives to violence in personal, community, national and international relationships. They are encouraged to see the links between different types of violence and seek solutions for themselves and others. Violence is explored from the different perspective of the victim, the perpetrator and the witness and interventions and solutions sought by the young people.

Innovation

We use a wide range of specially developed games, stories, quizzes, DVDs, videos, songs, activity books and workbooks to engage in a fun way with the children and young people. These resources are adapted for use with differently abled children and young people and also for use with vulnerable adults and the elderly.
We provide a minimum of 6 sessions starting with children at age 3 in pre-school and innitially teaching that they are 'very important people', they have the right to be safe and happy and they should tell and talk to trusted adults if they are unhappy. As they grow year by year the messages we teach them vary in complexity and begin to involve work on equality, relationships and causes ands solutions to violence. We encouage young people to share opinions around a range of issues and work at helping them change unhealthy or violent attidudes which often lead to violence in relationships.
We work with children from a very young age and also with parents to see that children receive different elements of the VIP programme throughtout their lives. The same messages are provided in varying complexity as they grow and develop. Thoughout, in addition to promoting non-violence as a viable option we also encourage a climate of talking and telling about all violence and abuse. This enables 'victims' to disclose and end abuse.

Delivery Model

Our V.I.P. programme is now available in all pre-school, primary schools, high schools and educational establishments in Dundee, Scotland. It is all available in many community settings. Teachers receive training in its use and this training is cascaded to other teachers. The programmes are now being rolled out across Scotland and England as their value is being realised.
The benefits of the V.I.P. Project has been realised at a local level by the child protection committee and the education department and this has led to a high level of communication at a local and national level including presentations in the Scottish Parliament.

Key Operational Partnerships

Child and Young People's Protection Committee promote the use of the programmes. The Police take part in delivery of the programmes. The Education Department in partnership with the Social Work Department submit funding bids to ensure teacher training. Teachers assist in delivery of the programmes and undertake training. Women's Aid and Rape Crisis organisations take up training and promote and help deliver the programmes in other areas of Scotland and England.
All these partnerships are essential to the innitiative.

Impact

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Financial Model

The programmes are provided free of charge to all children and young people in the schools using the V.I.P. programmes. Schools have to buy in the resources but they are generally subsidised by government grants. The resources are also relatively cheap to buy and the training costs are minimal to reflect the desire to encourage take up of the programmes.

What percentage, if any, of the total operating costs does earned income (from products, services, or other fees) represent?

100

How is the initiative financed? Is it financially self-sustainable or profitable? How much do beneficiaries contribute?

The innitiative is self-sustainable. Beneficiaries are chidlren and young people so they do not contribute at all. Schools, youth organisations and projects associated with vulnerable adults buy the resources and the training and then run the programme year by year. The resources are reusable and are fairly robust. As new resources are developed, agencies can aquire the updates relatively cheaply. Some agencies in different parts of the country such as Women's Aid and Rape Crisis Centres go on to provide delivery of sessions and input to sessions in schools and youth groups for a small fee but this is generally funded from Community Safety Partnerships, local government or national grants.

Effectiveness

The V.I.P. Tweenees part of the project was evaluated by an Educational Psychologist and Dundee University recently. 2 high schools and 8 primary schools took part in the evaluation and the results showed that not only did the programme lead to a higher awareness about safety amongst those who took part showing it worked at primary prevention but this increased awareness also led to a secondary prevention in a massive increase in disclosures from the young people involved. We found that when the programme was delivered by teachers and us, this led to one third of young people in a classroom telling about abuse and violence. tThis ranged from disclosing about domestic abuse, bullying, sexual abuse, rape and abduction.
As a result of the effectiveness of the programme in encouraging disclosures of abuse and violence more training on child protection has been offered to teachers.
To date, more than 20,000 children and young people have benefitted from the programmes we run.

How many people have benefited from your program over the last year? Which element of the program proved itself most effective?

Over the last year 5000 children and young people have received the programmes and benefitted from them. This number is increasing as more schools take up the resources.
All of the programmes are highly effective but if one part has to be singled out it is surely the 'wee vip' element which is the part that is used with pre-school children and parents. This is the introduction to idea that children are 'very important people with the right to talk about their feelings' and is not only great fun but for many children a completely new idea which they are quick to embrace.

Scaling up Strategy

Our priority over the next 3 years is to share these programmes with as many agencies and individuals as possible and encourage use and adapting of the V.I.P. programmes across this country and others. Because we know, and can prove, that this programme does work in terms of increasing safety, raising awareness about violence in all forms and encouraging disclosures, we want to roll it out to others. Tackling domestic violence, sexual violence and a culture of violence, we believe has to start at a very early ages and be continued at every age and development stage, in a consistant way with the same messages and a zero tollerance of any form of violence input to make an impact.

Stage of the Initiative

1

Origin of the Initiative

Eighteen And Under was set up in April 1994 and provides support to young people under 18 who have been abused. In 1997 we took over 10,000 phone calls from young people in crisis. it was at this point that the Co-ordinator decided that some day she wanted to retire and that surely preventing the violence and abuse from happening in the first place would be a better idea than dealing with the thousands of young victims coming through the doors.
She looked round the world for evidence-based prevention programmes that tackled all form of violence for all ages and found none. This was when the V.I.P. project began. Rapidly a team of advisors and experts were brought together including police, social work, education, parents and young people and work began on developing resources, then piloting and evaluating the various resources.
9 years on we are still developing further resources so that all ages and abilities can be reached by the programmes.

This Entry is about (Issues)

Sustainability

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How did you hear about this contest and what is your main incentive to participate?

Found it on the Internet

Main Obstacles to Scaling Up

Financial constraints and people time.

Main Financial Challenges

We would need more finance to reproduce our many resources to make them available to others.
We wouls also need more finance to employ training officers to train more people in use of the resources.
In an ideal world we would be expecting National Government to see the value in prevetiojn of all aspects of violence and abuse and therefore invest in this programme.

Main Partnership Challenges

The main challenges with partnerships in getting them to realise that a small non profit organisation has some experises as well as they do. Working together with people for different agencies is great but also very challenging when some partners fail to see the value of partnerships and think that they are the only professionals in the partnership. This can be addressed effectively but does take time and energy.

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Abuse Prevention Programme Evaluation.ppt181.5 KB
244 weeks ago Irene Clark said: The V.I.P. Project is different because it allows children to have a tremendous amount of fun while they are learning. They are allowed ... about this Competition Entry. - read more >
244 weeks ago keiran watson said: hey there, i work for the violence is preventable project and noticed the above comment. there are many stories of how the ... about this Competition Entry. - read more >
353 weeks ago Dana Frasz said: Hello Laurie, Can you share some stories of the experiences and impact of kids who have been involved in your program? Also, could you ... about this Competition Entry. - read more >
388 weeks ago Mathare North said: I think the MEGEN project is inspiring not only to the people working in it but also to the community they work with. I have been lucy ... about this Competition Entry. - read more >
388 weeks ago Sandra Hutton said: I am a Police Officer who has worked with the materials with children young people and elderly residents in my area. I have seen the ... about this Competition Entry. - read more >
388 weeks ago laurie matthew said: I have seen this in action. THIS PROGRAMME WORKS!!!!! What a great way of abuse prevention. Its fun, energetic, and children young ... about this Competition Entry. - read more >
388 weeks ago laurie matthew said: Eighteen And Under has just produced another V.I.P. resource for use with teenagers. it is a DVD plus a 48 page users guide for teachers ... about this Competition Entry. - read more >
389 weeks ago V.I.P. (Violence Is Preventable) Project has been chosen as a finalist in No Private Matter! Ending Abuse in Intimate & Family Relations.