Family violence programmes goes open source | HMA

Family violence programmes goes open source

Programme goes open source

Two years ago HMA brought together representatives of key family violence provider groups from around New Zealand/Aotearoa to talk about what should be included in a contemporary intervention for men who were using abusive practices within their relationship and family/whanau. Despite the disruption of the Christchurch earthquake, we have continued to develop three different programmes to meet the regulations of the Domestic Violence Act (1996). Our approach has been brave and takes the work well ahead of where the regulations of the DVA Act (1996) sit. It is our view that regulations should enhance, rather than stifle, evidenced based interventions and so the intervention has a number of unique additions: robust front-end assessment, individual sessions, family/whanau accountability sessions, and exit sessions. The intervention draws from gendered understandings of power, is strength-based and is strongly cognitive-behavioural in approach. It also takes account of the multiple pathways into family violence and the need to carefully match interventions with the abusive process that men engage in. For all of us working in the field, we know from experience and the evidence-based research, that abusive practice is not all the same for men presenting and has a complexity that needs to be understood and managed.

There are three versions of the programme:
• 50 hour open group intervention
• 50 hour closed group intervention
• 12 hour individual intervention

Each programme has a clear facilitator guide, participant workbook, facilitator resources, and posters. We are currently working on a theory manual that sits alongside all of the programmes.

HMA has made the decision to make these programmes freely available to agencies around Aotearoa based on an open source license. It is in keeping with our philosophy at HMA that information and best practice ideas that supports safety in family/whanau, should not be proprietary but freely available. Open source means that we have obligation to each other. On a practical level it also means that any additions or improvements to the programme are then circulated around the community of signed up provider groups so that everyone benefits from the thinking of each other. The programme will sit in a Dropbox area that is password protected. We are also developing a forum facility where programme providers can engage in online discussion with each other.

A big thanks to Relationships Aotearoa and Stopping Violence Services (Christchurch) for contributing to this project. As you know, the time to put a robust and thought-out programme together, takes time, money and expertise.

HMA will continue to provide agencies who want, the opportunity to adjust, adapt and brand the programme to their particular look and feel. This will incur a cost. We will also be available to provide training for agencies that feel this would help to up-skill facilitators in the new programme. The hard work is done and agencies can benefit from this significant investment by a large group of people.


Published on Wednesday, October 10th, 2012, under Announcements, Family violence

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