Domestic and Family Violence (DFV) is usually an ever-evolving situation involving several stages. These stages may include the start of violence, realisations, crisis, exit and recovery. An informed and effective approach to DFV needs to provide support during all of them. During this article, we are going to talk about recovery and rebuilding.

At this point in time, the focus of most organisational DFV responses is crisis, and with good reason. Crisis support can enable a person to leave their situation, find safety and it ultimately save lives. It is a crucial element of any DFV response. But then what?

Leaving a DFV situation is incredibly difficult and complex, often comprising of emotional, physical, practical and financial impacts. These impacts can exist in the long-term, way beyond a person has left their situation. And so ongoing support is crucial to enable a person to get back on track and to rebuild.

There is a cyclical nature to DFV, and people often take numerous attempts to leave for good. And the sad paradox of this situation is a person needs to hold their greatest strength at a time of their greatest vulnerability. And so in order to have and maintain that strength, it is important that we walk with them and provide the right support in their journey forwards.

Just imagine, a person may be dealing with their own personal trauma, they may be a newly single parent to traumatised children. Perhaps they are struggling financially due to the abuse or the cost of escaping. They may have physical or mental health challenges. They could be grappling with living in a new area, or feeling displaced. And their career may have been impacted or they could have lost their job due to the violence. Plus, they are likely to be grieving the loss of their relationship and missing the person they love. All these things add up, and if there’s a particularly bad day, the person may choose to return to their familiar surroundings, however abusive or toxic they may be.

But if that person has the right support around them to move forwards, develop confidence and empowerment, have a clear direction and motivation, they are far more likely to navigate through and beyond DFV to happiness, safety and fulfilment.

And so a workplace that provides ongoing support beyond the crisis stage and actively walks with someone as they recover (in a way that gives the person total agency of their own situation), is one that provides not just DFV recovery support but potentially also DFV prevention.

WorkHaven has developed an online coaching program that supports people to rebuild after DFV, and this program can be deployed through the workplace. The 10-week program aims to support people who are impacted by:

  • developing independence and restoring confidence
  • rebuilding the areas of their lives that have been impacted by the aggression
  • moving forward to regain their health and retain their career

To learn more about taking an effective approach to all stages of DFV in your workplace, please visit To learn more about WorkHaven’s recovery program, please email