Under 5s Programme

Support programme for families affected by domestic abuse

Bounce Back for Kids is launching a new pilot programme for children under 5 years old and their parents who have been affected by or witnessed domestic abuse.

The Under 5s programme consists of a 12 week course for parents and children. Each session will begin separately for children and parents, then they will meet together for combined activities and a shared snack.

The programme aims to enrich the relationship between parent and child through playful interaction and empower the parent to address the needs of their child. The children’s group and combined group work will be delivered by an experienced play therapist with early years experience. The parent’s group will be delivered by an experienced domestic abuse facilitator

More details about the parents' and children's sessions can be found below.

Dates and times:

The course will take place from September 2021 - January 2022 in Reading. Two groups will run simultaneously every Monday.

Group one: 10am-11.30am   |   Group two: 1pm-2.30pm

Dates: September 6th (virtually on Zoom), 20th, 27th. October 4th, 18th.

November 8th, 15th, 22nd, 29th. December 6th, 15th (Wednesday),  20th. January 10th, 17th.

Currently accepting referrals

The Bounce Back for Kids Under 5’s programme is a closed group, and participation is by referral only (we do accept self-referrals).

If you have or work with young children who might benefit from taking part in this course, please call us on 0300 456 4800 or email us at bb4k@pactcharity.org to make a referral.

Criteria for making a referral:

  • The child has witnessed or been affected by domestic abuse and is experiencing or has been displaying any kind of emotional or behavioural  difficulties, internally or externally
  • The child is aged under 5
  • The child would like to attend; attending the BB4K program is always the child's choice
  • The parent/carer is willing to support the child throughout the BB4K Under 5’s programme
  • The perpetrator must have left the family home and be out of the relationship


Course details

Children's course

Living with domestic abuse can have a serious impact on a child’s behaviour, development and wellbeing. For children under five the impact can be greater due to their age and inability to communicate their feelings.

The aim of the BB4K Under 5s course is to raise children’s self-esteem and give them an opportunity to explore and express their feelings through fun, child-focussed activities and child-directed play, in a safe therapeutic way, promoting resilience and emotional well-being.

Each week will focus on a different topic designed to empower and facilitate the healing process of children.

Aims of the children’s course:

  • To improve self-esteem
  • To improve the ability to identify and  express feelings in appropriate ways
  • To improve resilience and emotional well-being
  • To understand about safe touch through nurturing, sharing and turn taking activities
  • To improve empathy and problem solving skills

Parents' course

The parents’ course will run simultaneously with the children’s course and will focus on empowering parents, validating their parental role in a non-judgemental environment and enabling them to see domestic abuse through the eyes of a child.

Parents will be given the opportunity to reflect on the impact of domestic abuse on their child’s behaviour and their own. They will learn practical support techniques, which they can continue to practise after the course has finished for long–term benefits to the child.

The course will create an environment for parents to feel less isolated and will emphasise that they are not alone. If parents are given the opportunity to be heard, believed and to express their feelings, then they are more able to support their children in the same way.

Aims of the parents’ course:

  • To give parents the opportunity to look at domestic abuse ‘through the eyes of children’
  • To empower parents/carers to support their child’s emotional needs and recognise behaviours that children who have lived with domestic abuse often display
  • To support parents to develop strategies to deal with behaviours
  • To develop a support group for parents
  • To build parents’ self-esteem and self-confidence
  • To offer strategies to enrich relationships between parent and child
  • To understand the importance of play in building relationships, improving problem solving skills, increasing resilience and improving emotional well-being

Combined activities

Often adults who have been in abusive relationships have had their parenting undermined and their confidence and self worth diminished. Therefore enriching the bond between parent and child is a key goal in moving forward with the healing process for both of them, and the combined activities at the end of each session will enhance these positive attachments.

Aims of the combined activities:

  • To enhance a positive relationship between parent and child
  • For parents and children to accept they are worthy of nurture and positive social interaction


To find out more, please email bb4k@pactcharity.org or call 0300 456 4800.