Launching Domestic Violence Perpetrator Programme (DVPP) in Sverdlovsk Area, Russia
During 2017-2018 URU Connect and its Russian partner NGO, The Crisis Centre for Women and Children “Ekaterina” implemented the pioneering project “Improving safety for women and children victims of domestic violence through development and implementation of the Domestic Violence Perpetrator Programme (DVPP) in Sverdlovsk Area, Russia”. The project was funded by the CAF Foundation, Russia.
As part of the project the first of its kind Domestic Violence Perpetrator Programme (DVPP) was developed and piloted in Sverdlovsk Area, Russia. The DVPP aims to help people, who have been abusive towards their partners or ex-partners, change their behaviour and develop respectful, non-abusive relationships.
The Federal Penitentiary Service FSIN became the key project stakeholder. An agreement of cooperation was signed between FSIN and The Crisis Centre “Ekaterina” and the officers from the FSIN Psychological Service worked closely with “Ekaterina” to develop the first version of the programme and to pilot it with two groups of domestic violence perpetrators, conditionally charged and imprisoned. The perpetrators rated the course as “… useful and interesting,” and noted new skills in their awareness of the choice of their behaviour in conflictual and violent situation. The pilot had a very positive feedback from the project stakeholders. It was recognised that the programme could be very effective and further work was planned to develop and implement the programme with different groups of perpetrators.
The development of the programme was informed through the British expertise in this area of work developed over the last ten years. We are extremely grateful to the British professionals who kindly shared their knowledge with Russian partners during the study visit to the UK in October 2017 – the domestic violence researcher Elizabeth A. Kelly CBE, professor and director of the Child and Woman Abuse Studies Unit (CWASU), London Metropolitan, Will Hughes, Senior Lecturer in Criminology at London Metropolitan University, Police Officers Rani Gundhu and Katherine Stock – West Midlands Police, Sara Kirkpatrick, Services Development Manager, RESPECT, and Nina George, Research and Development Manager, European Network for Work with Perpetrators (WWP EN), staff of ARCH (North Staffs) and others.
The newly developed DVPP programme and the results of the pilot have been presented and discussed at the DV Conference on 22nd March 2018 in Ekaterinburg, which gathered together senior police and prison officers, judicial decision makers and members of Russian NGO’s.
Director of URU Connect, Kath Rees MBE presented at the Conference. She said “we are proud to be able to support our International partners in developing new strategies to improve safety for women and children victims of domestic violence in Russia”.
The training programme and materials have been shared through the Coalition of the Crisis Centres of the Ural Siberian Region and wider through the domestic violence sector in Russia.
This project builds on the achievements of previous work with the Crisis Centre for Women and Children “Ekaterina” and the Coalition of the Crisis Centre of the Ural Siberian Region. Members of URU Connect have been working with “Ekaterina” since 1997 supporting “Ekaterina” during its previous successful international projects.