Creating a Safe Place: Helping Children and Families Recover from Sexual Abuse

By NCH Children and Families Project.
Jessica Kingsley Publishers
£15.95, ISBN 1 84310 009 6

At best, therapeutic services for
sexually abused children and their families are in short supply and often restricted
to short-term intervention. At worst, they can be misattuned to the needs of
traumatised children and their carers. Alternatives often rely on small
specialist projects provided by the voluntary sector. This account of the work
of one such project highlights the reparative value of post-protection therapy.

The team draws on person-centred
and trauma frameworks to inform creative approaches such as art work, drama,
story telling and poetry. Their work is predicated on the provision of a safe
therapeutic space and on trust in the capacity of individual children and
adults to mobilise their inner strength. Case examples and material contributed
by service users illustrate how, in a supportive environment, lives fragmented
by trauma can become more whole.

This book is clearly written, making it
accessible for a wide range of professionals and service users. Specialist
projects like this one deserve to influence policy and the allocation of
resources.  

Sue Richardson is a psychotherapist,
trainer and co-author/editor of Creative Responses to Child Sexual Abuse
(Jessica Kingsley, 2001)

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