Children and young people

How to support children and young people as 1 of our 5 key priorities.

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The Domestic Abuse Act 2021 recognises children and young people as victims of domestic abuse if they “..see, hear or otherwise experience the effects of abuse”.

Domestic abuse can affect children in many ways. They may feel frightened, become withdrawn, be aggressive or display challenging behaviour, bedwet, run away, develop problems at school, lack concentration or suffer emotional upset.

One of our five strategic priorities

Children and young people are 1 of the 5 strategic priorities in the Lambeth VAWG strategy.

The strategy’s vision is for Lambeth to be a place where every resident, including our children and young people, feel safe in all public and private spaces, and can meet their full potential, free from violence and abuse.

Our goals include ensuring children and young people can access:

  • specialist support that is tailored to their needs, culturally appropriate, and able to minimise trauma to help them recover and lead positive lives, safe from abuse
  • support to understand consent and healthy relationships, and be safe from all forms of VAWG
  • effective support from practitioners

We are also committed to identifying and making safe spaces, such as schools, parks, transport hubs, neighbourhoods and online where children and young people experience harm beyond their families.

The new strategy aligns with our Lambeth Made Safer for Young People Strategy 2020-2030, which focuses on reducing violence that impacts on our children and young people.

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Where to get help

Gaia Centre - Early Intervention Service

The early intervention specialist service is for girls and non-binary young people aged 13-17, who are at risk of or have experienced any form of gender-based violence.

Gender-based violence can include domestic abuse, sexual violence, forced marriage, stalking, trafficking, forced prostitution, female genital mutilation (FGM) or cutting, abuse said to be committed in the name of so-called ‘honour’, child sexual exploitation, and harms associated with serious youth violence.

The service also supports young people of all genders aged 11-17 who have been impacted by domestic abuse, whether at home or in their own intimate relationships.

The Gaia Centre provides confidential, non-judgmental, and respectful one-to-one support, offering a safe space in school, out in the community, and virtually. Early intervention staff work with young people to create an individual support plan that helps to reduce their risks and increase their well-being and safety. The service is relationship-focused and creative, offering emotional well-being support and safety planning, understanding a young person’s experiences in a trauma-informed way.

The Gaia Centre is a voluntary service and consent is needed from the child or young person to make the referral. To make a referral or discuss support options:

For more information on the Gaia Centre, see our get help page.

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Bambu provides tailored, specialist support in a multi-agency approach, to meet the holistic needs of children and young people aged 11-24 who are impacted by domestic abuse in the home.

Bambu is delivered by RISE and the Richmond Fellowship (RF), organisations that have experience working with children and young people across London.

Children aged 11 to 15 can access services provided by the Richmond Fellowship, including:

  • up to 20 sessions of play therapy
  • resilience sessions
  • Child and Adolescent Parent Violence (CAPV) programme

Young people aged 16 to 24 can access services provided by RISE, including:

  • up to 8 individual trauma-focused cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) sessions
  • 6 trauma focused group-work and restorative family sessions
  • Child and Adolescent Parent Violence (CAPV) programme

For further information about the service, or to request a referral form, please email


CODA runs a multi-agency 12-week group work programme for women and children who have experienced domestic violence and/or abuse concurrently.

CODA is different to other programmes as it:

  • is children focused which sees domestic violence and/or abuse through their eyes
  • empowers and validates the mother’s experience as a priority
  • provides multi-agency support to maximise mother and child's continual safety and well-being

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The referral criteria for CODA is:

  • the child has experienced domestic abuse
  • the child is aged 4-11 years
  • the perpetrator no longer lives in the family home (contact can be in place)
  • the child is not subject to a Child Protection Plan (CP)
  • the mother agrees with the above and wants to seek help for her child 

If you have any questions or would like to request a referral form, please get in touch with Nicole Black, CODA Coordinator, Senior Early Help Practitioner via email at

Report a concern about a child or young person

If a child or young person is in immediate danger, call 999.

If you're concerned that a child is at risk of harm, see our information on how to report a concern about a child with Lambeth Children's Services.

Get further help and information on the Lambeth Safeguarding Partnership website.

Contact the NSPCC via phone on 0808 800 5000 or email at

Children and young people can contact Childline online via email or chat or call 0800 1111.