Why our programme?   

Our aim is to empower young women to know that violence is never acceptable in a relationship no matter what they say or do, there is never ever any excuse for violence. 

In England and Wales the cross-governmental definition of domestic violence and abuse is:  Any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive, threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender or sexuality. The abuse can encompass, but is not limited to, psychological, physical, sexual, financial and emotional. 

The nine-week HEART programme gives young women in depth insight and information about each type and tactic of domestic violence and abuse and the warning signs to be aware of if they get into a new relationship. 


Why focus on young girls?

In the UK one woman or girl is killed every three days from domestic violence. 

According to research from Safelives children’s insight’s data 95% of young people aged 13-17 experiencing intimate partner violence were female.

One quarter of girls aged 13-17 reported experiencing intimate partner violence; one in nine female respondents had experienced severe physical violence; and almost three quarters of girls had experienced emotional abuse.
(NSPCC, 2009)

One in three teenage girls has experienced some form of sexual violence from a partner.
(University of Bristol for NSPCC, 2009)


One in two young women have experienced controlling behaviours in a relationship. (Refuge charity).
Research shows that 27% of teenage girls aged 13-17 have experienced sexual violence in their relationships.
(Bristol University/NSPCC, 2009)  

41% of UK girls aged 14-17 in an intimate relationship experienced some form of sexual violence from their partner.
University of central Lancashire, (2015) Written submission from the Connect Centre for International Research on Interpersonal Violence and Harm

59% of girls aged 13-21 reported in 2014 some form of sexual harassment at school or college in the past year.
Girl guiding’s social attitudes survey (2014).

Girls and young women between the ages of 16 and 24 experience the highest rate of intimate partner violence — almost triple the national average.