Dundalk Institute of Technology have launched an accredited Certificate in the Fundamentals of Understanding and Responding to Domestic Abuse. The programme was launched on 14th January 2016 and is the first of its kind in Ireland, accredited in Ireland.
Jim McGuigan, Chairperson of Louth CYPSC and Tusla Area Manager for Louth and Meath, said at the launch:
“This innovative course has been developed through a collaboration between the Louth Children and Young People's Services Committee, Dundalk Institute of Technology, The Probation Service, An Garda Siochána, the HSE, Drogheda Women’s and Children’s Refuge and Dundalk Women’s Aid. This programme meets a real educational need and demonstrates the tangible results that can be achieved when we take an inter-agency approach.”
Jim McGuigan, Minister Aodhán Ó Ríordáin and Dr. Edel Healy pictured at the launch.
Domestic abuse occurs in many households across Ireland. Yet many who encounter it in the course of their work struggle to know how to respond. Domestic abuse can include physical, sexual and psychological control by one partner over another.
In a study conducted in 2014, staff in frontline services identified that they needed educational support in this subject in order to gain the skills to recognise domestic abuse in day-to-day work and learn how to respond.
Dr. Edel Healy, Head of the School of Health and Human Science at Dundalk Institute of Technology, and member of Louth CYPSC described the process of developing the programme:
“Work on this programme started nearly two years ago. We researched the learning needs of frontline staff. We worked with all the agencies to develop a strong curriculum. We secured experienced personnel to deliver this programme. We designed a learning method that includes classroom and online learning to suit the availability of students who are also working full-time.”
Minister of State for New Communities, Culture and Equality, Aodhán Ó Ríordáin is pictured at the launch along with representatives from the organisations that developed the course.
Louth CYPSC have a dedicated Domestic Violence Sub-Group, whose purpose is to provide approaches to promoting and developing an understanding of domestic, sexual and gender based violence for the general public and for students in first, second and third level education.
Click here for more information on Louth CYPSC.
Click here for more information on the course.
Click here to read an article about the course in the Irish Times.