1st Edition

Domestic Abuse Safety Planning with Young Children: A Professional Guide

By Catherine Lawler Copyright 2024
    52 Pages 13 B/W Illustrations
    by Speechmark

    This guidebook is an essential companion to the Pilgrim’s Bumpy Flight story and is designed to be read by professionals to ensure the effective and safe use of the storybook.

    Pilgrims Bumpy Flight has been created to help young children aged 5–7 experiencing domestic abuse, to explore the concepts of physical and emotional safety. Safety planning with a child offers a way to help them vocalise their feelings and understand what to do when something does not feel right. The professional guide will help supporting adults facilitate safety planning that is experienced as emphatically curious, safe and where the child’s opinion matters. It provides up-to-date information on domestic abuse, childhood trauma, practice tips and how to complete a safety plan with a young child using the storybook as the key vessel of communication and exploration.

    Key features include:

    • Accessible information about domestic abuse and coercive control based on the latest research.

    • Guidance around direct work and safety planning with young children.

    • Practical activities building off Pilgrim’s story, including printable material.

    • Things to consider and ways to use the storybook to facilitate a conversation with a child, as well as page-by-page helpers notes on the narrative.

    • A comprehensive list of helplines and organisations in place to support adult victims/survivors of domestic abuse.

    Used alongside the storybook, this professional guide is a crucial tool for the early years sector, education staff and those working in children’s services, including safeguarding officers, family support workers, social workers and children’s IDVAs. Both books should be used in tandem with agency policy, procedure and guidance.

    1 Before you read this book

    2 Leaving

    3 Cast of Characters

    4 Page by Page Helpers Notes

    5 Toxic Stress

    6 Childhood Trauma

    7 A Childs Place within the Family

    8 Direct work and Safety Planning with Children

    9 Safety Planning Tips for Adults

    10 Relationship Rights for Adults

    11 Appendix Outline

    12 Appendices 1-9

    13 Websites and Helplines




    Catherine Lawler is a qualified specialist children’s counsellor, trauma practitioner and childhood survivor of domestic abuse and coercive control. She has extensive experience working with children, young people, adult survivors and families as well as developing and facilitating training on the issues of domestic abuse and coercive control. Catherine is co-author of Domestic Violence and Children: A Handbook for Schools and Early Years, Floss and the Boss: Helping Children Learn About Domestic Abuse and Coercive Control, and Luna Little Legs: Helping Young Children to Understand Domestic Abuse and Coercive Control.

    Nicky Armstrong B.A.(Hons) Theatre Design, M.A. Slade School of Fine Arts, has illustrated 30 books which have been translated and published in 7 countries. She has achieved major commissions in both mural and fine art painting.