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Education Minister, Caitríona Ruane, has highlighted the work of Women’s Aid in supporting children through providing training for teachers.

27 January, 2011 - by Caitríona Ruane


Education Minister, Caitríona Ruane, has highlighted the work of Women’s Aid in supporting children through providing training for teachers.

The Minister was speaking at the Canal Court Hotel, Newry where she presented certificates to primary school teachers participating in the Women’s Aid pilot training course Developing Social Guardians to Deliver Helping Hands Programme.

The Women’s Aid Helping Hands Programme, which is supported by the Department of Education, has been delivered to around 80 primary school teachers across the north.

Minister Ruane said: “Women’s Aid provides a vital support service to women and children who may have suffered mental, physical or sexual abuse in the home. The new Helping Hands Programme is designed to help primary school children talk about issues affecting them and give reassurance that they have the right to feel safe all the time.

“The Developing Social Guardians pilot training course provides primary school teachers with the skills and confidence to deliver the Helping Hands Programme in the classroom.

“Through supporting initiatives such as this, government can send out a clear signal that domestic violence in any form is totally unacceptable. For children, domestic violence can restrict their participation in education and their ability to develop personal ambitions, skills and talents.

“We need to engage with children as early as possible to help them develop a solid frame of reference for relationships they may enter into. We also need to let them know that they are not alone and can speak to someone about issues affecting them.

“Teachers can have a powerful role in influencing and guiding our children and I commend the commitment of teachers who have participated in these training courses. I also pay tribute to Women’s Aid for their work, which helps and support women and children every day.”

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