Child welfare professionals should strive to ensure that they are providing sound and effective services to children, youth, and families impacted by domestic violence. This section includes resources on promising practices in child welfare and domestic violence services, including State and local examples.
The practices included below have been identified by their developers or an outside group as "evidence-based." Child Welfare Information Gateway and the Children's Bureau do not endorse individual practices or programs or make any claims about the effectiveness of the approaches described. This information is provided as a resource.
Advancing Research for the Field: Research and Capacity Building Projects
Quality Improvement Center on Domestic Violence in Child Welfare
Describes the work of the Quality Improvement Center on Domestic Violence in Child Welfare, which is partnering with and supporting research and capacity building projects in Illinois; Massachusetts; and Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. The projects aim to develop, implement, and evaluate programs to promote the safety and well-being of adult and child survivors of domestic violence.
Building Evidence for Domestic Violence Services and Interventions: Challenges, Areas of Opportunity, and Research Priorities (PDF - 222 KB)
Center for Policy Research & National Resource Center on Domestic Violence (2017)
Presents evidence-based practices for domestic violence services and interventions. The resource includes the results of a literature review, interviews with subject matter experts, and information gathered from a two-day meeting of domestic violence professionals.
Domestic Violence Evidence Project
National Resource Center on Domestic Violence
Summarizes the Domestic Violence Evidence Project, which works to help State and local domestic violence programs and organizations integrate evidence-based practice into their work. The project aims to help domestic violence programs successfully respond to domestic violence and increase domestic violence professionals' access to information on effective interventions in the field.
Domestic Violence Prevention Initiative
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Indian Health Service
Provides violence prevention and treatment services for Tribes, Tribal organizations, and Urban Indian organizations. The organization promotes the use of evidence-based and practice-based models that represent culturally appropriate prevention and treatment approaches to domestic violence and sexual assault.
National Child Traumatic Stress Network
Describes evidence-based interventions for children affected by intimate partner violence and presents links to additional resources on interventions for children experiencing trauma.
National Institute of Justice, Crime Solutions
Provides research on programs serving children who have witnessed or are victimized by crime to inform practitioners and policymakers about what works in criminal justice, juvenile justice, and crime victim services. Research is scored on being effective, promising, or showing no effects.
Moving Toward Evidence-Based Practices: A Guide for Domestic Violence Organizations (PDF - 1,597 KB)
National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (2016)
Presents information on evidence-based practices and programs to help domestic violence organizations and programs learn to document evidence to support their program effectiveness and identify ways to use evidence-based interventions.
National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health Online Repository of Trauma-Focused Interventions for Survivors of Intimate Partner Violence
National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health (2019)
Offers a collection of more than 50 articles that evaluate trauma-focused interventions for survivors of intimate partner violence. The papers are organized into three groups: studies of trauma-focused interventions specifically geared toward intimate partner violence survivors; trauma-focused interventions with no specific modifications for survivors of intimate partner violence; and trauma-focused interventions with no specific modifications for survivors of intimate partner violence where the sample used in the study included survivors of intimate partner violence along with other trauma survivors.
National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health Webinar Series on Trauma-Focused Interventions for Survivors of Domestic and Sexual Violence
National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health (2016)
Offers a webinar that covers emerging and evidence-based approaches to working with survivors of domestic violence. The topics covered include stress reduction, cognitive-behavioral techniques for healing trauma, and a curriculum for women who struggle with anger.
National Indigenous Women's Resource Center
Aims to provide national leadership to end violence against American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian women and children. The organization's projects include NativeLove, which works to raise awareness and end violence against Native youth, and the StrongHearts Native HelpLine, which offers culturally appropriate support and resources for Native Americans affected by domestic violence.
Preventing Intimate Partner Violence Across the Lifespan: A Technical Package of Programs, Policies, and Practices (PDF - 4,639 KB)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Violence Prevention (2017)
Presents strategies based on research evidence to help communities and States enhance intimate partner violence prevention activities. The activities include teaching safe and healthy relationship skills, engaging influential adults and peers, disrupting the developmental pathways that create intimate partner violence, creating protective environments, and strengthening economic supports and other support services for families.
Promising Practices and Model Programs: Trauma-Informed Approaches to Working With Survivors of Domestic and Sexual Violence and Other Trauma (PDF - 420 KB)
Phillips, Lyon, Fabri, & Warshaw (2015)
National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma and Mental Health
Presents results from interviews with leaders of domestic violence programs about evidence-based and trauma-informed practices being used with survivors of domestic and sexual violence. The results of the interviews show how programs are conceptualizing trauma-informed work and how using evidence-based practices improves outcomes for those who are served.
Updated Comprehensive Review of Interventions for Children Exposed to Domestic Violence
Futures Without Violence
Reviews more than 40 evidence-based interventions for domestic violence and presents a literature review and related resources.
A Summary of Evidence-Based and Best Practices to Prevent Violence and Injury of Children and Youth in King County, Washington (PDF - 447 KB)
Seattle and King County Department of Public Health (2017)
Examines injuries among children and youth in King County, Washington from 2002 to 2014 and provides information on risk and protective factors and evidence-based practices in violence prevention.
Using Data in Domestic Violence Work: Spotlight on the Ohio Domestic Violence Network
Resource Center on Domestic Violence: Child Protection and Custody (2016)
Highlights an evidence-based pilot program for domestic violence in Ohio that worked to implement enhanced data collection, evaluation, and capacity building to improve services.
Using Data in Domestic Violence Work: Spotlight on the West Virginia Coalition Against Domestic Violence
Resource Center on Domestic Violence: Child Protection and Custody (2016)
Summarizes an evidence-based pilot program implemented in West Virginia, which helped an existing domestic violence program use data to better understand the impact of local policy changes and training programs designed to increase awareness of those changes.