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Impact evaluation of Domestic Abuse, Recovering Together (DART)

Evaluation of how we support organisations to deliver our DART™ service

Publication date September 2020

Domestic Abuse, Recovering Together (DART™) is our group work programme that aims to improve outcomes for mothers and their children following domestic abuse.

It was one of the very first programmes we offered as part of our Scale-Up Unit where we support organisations in delivering services in their local areas. We are currently providing support for 30 service providers for this particular service.

The first evaluation of DART in 2016 showed that the programme benefited mothers and children in a variety of ways.

This evaluation looks at whether families attending the DART scaled-up service benefit from the programme to a similar extent to families who previously attended DART at the NSPCC. It also looks at whether improvements for families taking part in DART are significantly greater than for other families who were assessed as suitable for the service, but who have not yet participated in the programme.

Authors: Emma Smith, Emma Belton and Susan Cooke
Published: 2020

Impact evaluation of the scale-up of Domestic Abuse, Recovering Together
Download the report (PDF)

Key findings

DART scale-up sites were equally as successful as the NSPCC at helping families achieve positive outcomes following domestic abuse

Families who took part in DART at a scale-up site benefited from the programme to a similar extent to families who originally attended DART. They also showed significantly greater improvements in most outcomes than mothers and children who received no intervention during the same period.

Additional findings

Improvement in the mother-child relationship

After taking part in DART at a scale-up site, mothers had significantly greater self-esteem and felt more supported in their role as a parent. Children’s emotional and behavioural difficulties had reduced, and there were improvements in the mother-child relationship.

Increase in demand for DART

We have seen an increasing demand for DART. Following the positive evaluation results, we will be re-launching the service and will encourage suitable partners to deliver the programme. We are considering adaptations to the programme to meet the requirements for social distancing to minimise the risk of coronavirus (COVID-19).

> Get more information on how you can deliver the DART service in your own local area


Please cite as: Smith, E., Belton, E. and Cooke, S. (2020) Impact evaluation of the scale-up of Domestic Abuse, Recovering Together. London: NSPCC.