This workshop – delivered by me, Andrew ‘Bernie’ Bernard – will help people to recognise domestic abuse, appreciate the damaging nature of its portrayal in the media and ‘entertainment’, know what to do if they (or someone they know) experiences it, and finally challenge our young men to stop the cycle of violence in their generation.

Some Statistics: 1 in 4 women and girls will experience some sort of domestic abuse from a partner; 2 women a week are murdered by their partners; 60% of all female homicides are caused by their partners. THIS IS 2016 and it is still happening.

Starting with the tragic and powerful story of my sister, Sarah Gosling –- murdered by her partner Ian Hope in 2012 –- I’ll show how domestic abuse can start and escalate within relationships. Session participants are then asked to consider their own experiences* and awareness of domestic violence and how they feel about it. Fundamentally, the workshop aims to raise awareness of the subject and challenge some of the myths and responsibilities involved in this area of relationships and what each and every person can do to put an end to domestic abuse.

We have received support and guidance from Refuge (Refuge.org.uk) when designing this programme and will be donating 10% of all income from the workshops to their charity. We have also gained support and piloted the workshop with Faisal Ahmed Head of Humanities at Stretford High School and his students from Stretford High School.Faisal said “Thank you so much. You made a real impact on the year 10’s lives”.

Workshop Statistics – from surveys of Year 10/11 students who took part in the workshop:

– 73% said Rule of Thumb is ‘Excellent’ or ‘Very Good’ – 27% said ‘Good’;

– 100% of participants had a better understanding of Domestic Abuse / Violence and 100% would know what to do if they / close friends were victims of Domestic Violence.

Comments: “My knowledge increased a lot through this workshop”; “The Workshop expanded my knowledge”; “Domestic Violence happens a lot more than I thought it did”; “Domestic Violence is conveyed in many ways”; “Domestic Violence can be very simple and very subtle”.

*Pastoral teams / support staff are made aware of the workshop taking place in case any personal trauma is triggered.