As we, the Safe & Together Institute, look back at 2019, our heads are swirling with excitement about all of it. It’s difficult to even catalog all that has happened. So, before you turn to review our key achievements and milestones in the following pages of this first-ever Impact Report, I want to first reconnect you to our vision and mission, and then share with you our direction for 2020.
It is our desire to close the historic gap between practice in the child maltreatment and domestic violence fields, shift the emphasis of practice away from “failure to protect” to accountability and toward intervention with perpetrators as parents.
The following concepts are key drivers of our work:
- Domestic violence perpetration is a parenting choice.
- Domestic violence perpetrators’ behaviors and choices impact child and family functioning.
- Child-centered systems, particularly statutory child welfare, are natural allies of domestic violence survivors, and can be drivers of domestic violence-informed practice in their communities.
- Gender double-standards are preventing us from perceiving the parenting strengths of mothers and describing the impact, positive and negative, that father’s choices have on child and family functioning.
- Systems, including child welfare and family courts, need to get better at assessing men as parents, and need to stop treating them as disposable or privileged.
- A global network of professionals trained to implement a perpetrator pattern-based approach to domestic violence can change outcomes for children, adult survivors and families.
These concepts get expressed in our trainings, consultations, research, trainer certification program, conferences, organizational assessments, podcast and e-learning. In 2019, we have deepened our efforts in all these areas. For example, we are released new training and resource materials for supervisors and managers with a strong focus on worker safety. Research and our work with agencies helped us identify that workers’ fears about safety is one of the major barriers to implementing the Safe & Together Model.
We saw exponential growth in our e-learning implementation. At the beginning of 2020, we are already excited about what we will be accomplishing this coming year. This will be our second year where we will be having Safe & Together Model conferences in three continents. We hope to see you at one of these events. Each of our conferences, (Asia Pacific event in Australia; European event in the UK; and North American event in the United States) serves as our “touchstone” event in each region. We hope people will return to annually to stay connected to our newest thinking and materials alongside the work of our partners.
We will be releasing our fifth e-course “Partnering with Survivors.” This course will increase the capacity of professionals and agencies to become effective allies to adult survivors around the needs of their children.
We will be strengthening the Trainer Certification Program (TCP) through the release of our first fully online training credential: The Supervisor Training Curriculum Credential. This credentialing course will allow Partner Agencies to add another Safe & Together Model curricula to their trainers’ approved delivery lists. In addition, we have plans for improved localization of training and resource material as well as new consulting services for Partner Agencies to help them achieve their goals.
We will also continue to release new episodes of our brand new podcast “Partnered with A Survivor” which widens out the availability of Safe & Together related content, and is part of our commitment to include the voices of survivors throughout our work.
These are just a few things we have planned for 2020. I invite you to attend our conferences, take an in-person or online training, listen to our podcast and visit us on social media. Please join with us in making the world safer and stronger.