The Family First project works in partnership with Women’s Aid ABCLN and the NHSCT Family Intervention teams across Antrim, Ballymena, Carrickfergus, Larne and Newtownabbey.

The project supports mothers and children who have experienced (or currently experience) domestic violence, at the earliest possible opportunity thereby reducing risk, minimizing further harm, preventing separation (resulting from children being taken into care) and strengthening family relationships.

The Family First project employs a dedicated team of 8 support staff and is funded by The National Lottery Community Fund .


Women’s Aid ABCLN CYGNET Project funded by Children in Need provides bespoke one to one support for children aged from 8-18 years old, who have experienced/witnessed domestic abuse or violence in the family home.

The child’s individual needs are identified through the completion of initial assessment and reviewed throughout the period of support, to ensure needs are being met. The three main areas for support are:

  • Increased confidence
  • Better able to cope with distress or trauma
  • Have healthier relationships

Other areas for support include understanding separation and loss, managing anger, understanding emotions, anxiety and stress and safety planning. This is done through using a wide range of therapeutic resources, arts and crafts activities, work sheets and programmes such as, Helping Hands, Transformers, Bully Busters, Self-Esteem, Confidence and Me and Heading for Healthy Relationships

Family First Resources & Activities

Here’s Louise O’Kane from Women’s Aid ABCLN Family First project to tell us all a bit more about our fun resources and support for all mums and children at this time. We will be will be posting parenting tips on our website, sharing art & craft ideas and creating fun challenges for families to participate in.