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Work with people who commit violence or have an experience of violence

Country
Slovenia
Target Audience
Online communityYouth/pupils/studentsViolent extremistsFamiliesGeneral public
key themes association
Family supportVulnerable youth and youth engagement in P/CVE
Peer Reviewed practice
No
Year
2019

Organisation

The Association for Nonviolent Communication (Društvo za nenasilno komunikacijo) is a non-governmental, non-profit and humanitarian organisation dedicated to the prevention and reduction of violence and its consequences.

It was founded in 1996, being the first non-governmental organisation in Slovenia to provide programmes targeting both victims and perpetrators of violence.

The association is financed chiefly by the Slovenian Ministry of Labour, Family and Social Affairs, local communities and the Foundation for Funding Disability and Humanitarian Organisations of Slovenia (FIHO).

Type of Organisation: NGO

Project description

The Association for Nonviolent Communication works with both adult and young perpetrators of violence.

Work with adult perpetrators of violence focuses on violence in the family as well as intimate partner violence. Group sessions (social skills training) are combined with individual sessions, depending on individual needs. Social skills training is held in individual counselling sessions as well as 24 group meetings. The subject matter covers respect, violence, human rights, gender equality and responsible parenthood and partnership.

Young perpetrators of violence can attend individual counselling sessions. Usually comprising 10 individual sessions, these offer adolescents a safe place to express their ideas, opinions, beliefs and doubts without fear of rejection, threat or blame.

Parental Skills Training, a programme initiated in 2015, targets adults who neglect or inflict violence towards children as a result of their beliefs, patterns of behaviour or lack of parenting skills. Parents undergoing parenting skills training learn to recognise their own patterns of violence, change them appropriately and take responsibility for their behaviour. The training includes 24 weekly meetings, each lasting 2 hours.

The Association for Nonviolent Communication opened its first Safe House for Women and Children, Victims of Violence, in December 2004, and the second in September 2008. The safe house provides housing for 8 adult women, with or without children (male children are welcome up to the age of 15). Housing is limited to a 1-year period, during which women are offered support to help them recover from the experience of violence and take life decisions in a safe and caring space.

The Safe Accommodation for Women and Children, Victims of Violence programme was created to meet the needs of victims of violence for new forms of safe accommodation. The programme is unique in the network of already existing accommodation services providing various types of safe spaces (e.g. for women with sons over the age of 15 or women whose personal circumstances prevent them from following the rules of residence in a safe house).

Children and young people who have experienced violence are the focus in the Gatherings programme. Regular meetings with trained volunteers provide a safe environment in which violence-preventive attitudes are nurtured. The goal is to offer children the chance to build a positive relationship with an adult — an experience of trust and respect.

The Association for Nonviolent Communication also holds preventive workshops for children and young people. The goal is to cultivate zero tolerance to violence and instil a belief that desirable interpersonal relationships can only exist when everyone's human rights are respected. The workshops concentrate on recognising and preventing violence as well as fighting discrimination, and on promoting equality and human rights.

Moreover, the association runs awareness-raising campaigns, seminars, discussions and training sessions for professionals, and has been also very active in promoting the human rights of refugees and asylum seekers in Slovenia.

The association's deradicalisation work is integrated into all the above-mentioned programmes. But programmes targeting perpetrators of violence are particularly suited to the work, as this group exhibits specific risk factors for violent behaviour (certain stereotypes and radical beliefs about others, frequently in relation to gender roles).

The principle is that society (and, it follows, deradicalisation organisations) should hold perpetrators accountable for their actions, and help them reject dysfunctional ideals and turn around any violent behaviour.

Deliverables

All publications are in Slovenian.

  • 'Guidelines for professionals, working with perpetrators of violence' ('Delo s povzročitelji nasilja — Strokovne smernice in predstavitev dela'): see online.
  • 'Guidelines for work with children, victims of violence' ('Nasilje nad otroci — Strokovne smernice za delo z otroki, ki doživljajo zanemarjanje in/ali nasilje'): see online.
  • 'I can do differently: A guide for people who want to stop committing violence' (Zmorem drugače: Priročnik za osebe, ki želijo prenehati s povzročanjem nasilja): see online.
  • 'Preventing and recognizing child sexual abuse — frequently asked questions and answers' (Preprečevanje in prepoznavanje spolnih zlorab otrok — Najpogostješa vprašanja in odgovori nanje): see online.

Contact details

Address

Vojkova C. 1
1000 Ljubljana
Slovenia

Contact person: Katja Zabukovec Kerin
Telephone: (+386) 1 43 44 822
Email| Website
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Work with people who commit violence or have an experience of violence
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