School transport helps a family leave domestic abuse behind
Domestic abuse does not just impact the parent but also their children.
Regine tells us how she was able to help one such family move on by helping them solve an unusual problem.
“Tara* had fled domestic abuse with her three children; Kerys* who was eight, Dom* aged five, and baby Liam*. Kerys was at a school who reported she was doing really well, so Tara was delighted when Dom was offered a place there too. She hoped that it would give him the stability he so desperately needed after all they had been through.
“Kerys receives school transport, but this provision was refused for Dom.
“Without school transport, Dom would have been placed at a different school, which would make the school attendance unbelievably complicated for the family’s life.
“At first, Tara just accepted the decision. She was so used to being knocked back. But I told her we would do all we could to help her, and to stay positive.
“After discussion with the school they agreed to hold the place for Dom and not retract it until I had an opportunity to approach the council. I started the process of appealing the school transport decision. This was not easy, but after the third very long application we were successful.
“I was over the moon and so was Tara! I felt really proud of myself as it was a major step in helping the family to move on from all they had been through.
“Tara’s confidence grew, and she completed a Spurgeons parenting course. The difference in her parenting capacity can be seen. She tells me she regularly uses the techniques and strategies she learnt.
“Whilst she acknowledges that she still has challenges ahead, she tells me she has the confidence and tools to manage these herself. She can see so many changes in her own and her children’s lives, and tells me she is so grateful for my support.”
*Names changed to protect identity.
About the Spurgeons Elmbridge Family Centre Service:
Spurgeons family centres in the borough of Elmbridge, Surrey are places where parents of children aged 0–11 years can share the challenges and joys of parenthood. The centres offer a range of activities and support services to help you with all aspects of parenting, helping you make sure your child gets the best start in life.
To learn more about our work in Elmbridge, click here.