Services for Children and Young People

Aviva (formerly Christchurch Women's Refuge) first established its Children's Services in 1998, in recognition of the fact that children and young people have different needs than adults and a different experience of family violence.

Our services for children (under 18 years old) include early intervention and prevention Tamariki programme, which is designed to promote well being and break the intergenerational cycle of domestic violence. Our group programmes are approved by the Ministry of Justice and we have Child, Youth and Family accreditation.

The programmes they attend help them begin to make sense of what is happening to them. Children will undergo an assessment before commencing the programme, as well as one mid-way. The mother/care-giver will also be involved in this process. The programme facilitators (there are always two) encourage children to talk by undertaking activities and games that create a safe space which allows children to share.

Each child can express themselves if and when they wish to, but only through respectful relationship behaviours. The range of topics covered includes talking about what ‘abuse’ is (at a child’s level, of course); good touch/bad touch; positive experiences; self-esteem strengthening; personal stories and experiences; when parents fight; responsibility for violence and safety planning e.g. where to hide if there is a violent episode in the home.

If you are interested in learning more about accessing our services for yourself or your family please call our 0800 line. If you are an external agency wanting to refer a client you can find our referral forms here.

Download a brochure on our Child and Youth Services or download a referral form here.

Read about 11 year old Cathy's brighter future following her experience in the Tamariki Programme

“Aviva encouraged my son to do the Tamarirki (children’s) programme. Everyone, including the school principal, has noticed a vast improvement.”
Mother whose son did the programme with us.