Taking children with you to refuge

Taking children with you to live in a refuge

For reasons of safety, you may find it impossible to prepare your children in advance for an imminent move to a refuge.

However, as soon as you can do so safely, do tell them what is happening in an age appropriate way. Explain to your children that the move does not mean that they will never see other family members, their friends or their pets again.

Most refuges have children’s support workers who will make your children feel safe and at home in the refuge, and almost all refuges will have other children staying there when you arrive.

There will usually be a playroom for children, and the children’s worker will arrange activities for young refuge residents both in and away from the refuge. These children’s activities will benefit you as well as your children; you will have time to consider your own options and discuss your plans with other adults while your children participate in supervised activities.

Children are an important part of refuge life, and living in a refuge can be a positive experience for your children. They will have the opportunity to meet other children in a similar situation to their own. They can talk about their experiences with each other and begin to understand that they are not alone.

With the help and support of the refuge staff and volunteers, children can be helped to come to an understanding of their situation.

See more at the Virtual refuge which shows you what one could look like and has lots of information about what to expect there

Back to The Survivor’s Handbook

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