Active Bystander Communities: the UK’s first DVA bystander ​programme for general communities.
PHE ePoster Library. Gainsbury A. 09/12/19; 274371; 176
Alexa Gainsbury
Alexa Gainsbury
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Abstract Introduction
An increasing body of research identifies bystander intervention programmes as effective primary prevention for Violence Against Women and Girls. Existing evidence predominantly relates to sexual violence prevention in university settings; regarding domestic violence and abuse (DVA) specifically, as well as bystander intervention in community settings generally, evidence is in its infancy. We will present findings from the first UK DVA bystander programme for general communities, Active Bystander Communities (ABC). ABC consists of three 2-hour sessions. Participants progress through four theoretical stages; noticing the event; interpreting it as a problem; feeling responsible to do something; and intervening.
ABC was delivered to five groups of community participants (n=70) across the South West. Programme effectiveness is measured with psychometric tools assessing DVA myth endorsement, intent to help, confidence to take action as a bystander, and bystander behaviours at baseline, post and four-months follow-up. Qualitative insights were collected via semi-structured interviews.
Participants rated the intervention highly. Participants significantly improved in terms of intent to help, confidence to intervene and DVA myth rejection post intervention. The observed effect size (Cohen's d) was large across all three measures. Interview data is being analysed and four-month follow-up data collected in June 2019.
ABC shows promise as an effective primary prevention intervention empowering communities to support potential victims and safely and effectively address problematic behaviours. As the first pilot of its kind, the findings are likely to be of great interest and may help shape future interventions. External funding details Intervention development funded by Bristol City Council
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