Helen’s mum, who is profoundly deaf and communicates using British Sign Language, was a victim of domestic violence by her father over a number of years and as a result, he’s now no longer able to contact his ex-wife and their daughter.

Becoming a single parent for the first time, Helen’s mum felt lonely and isolated - she lacked the confidence to cope with Helen on her own and struggled to create consistent boundaries and routines. As a result, Helen was behaving badly at nursery, her attendance was deteriorating and meant she was at risk of not being able to start primary school.

The family was referred by their social worker to their local Family Well-Being Project, run by Action for Children.

"We supported Helen’s mum in creating positive routines, structures and boundaries that would create a secure environment for her daughter and help with her behaviour."

Helen, case study

We worked with Helen’s mum to help her daughter make the transition to primary school and to have clear communication between her and her daughter so their relationship could improve.

As well as this, we sign-posted her to local parenting groups and deaf support groups to help address her feelings of isolation, and helped her to keep appointments, book interpreters and become more independent, eventually having the confidence to travel on her own.

Helen and her mum were also supported emotionally as they made a big adjustment in their lives after Helen’s father left. The improvement in the emotional health of Helen’s mum now means she’s more assertive, is open to further learning and has strategies in place for how to cope with her daughter’s behaviour.

Helen’s mum told her Action for Children support worker that she’d ‘saved her life’ and that she wishes that she’d met her years ago.

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