Thanks to an award from players of People’s Postcode Lottery through the Postcode Dream Fund, Children 1st is leading a partnership with Victim Support Scotland, the University of Edinburgh and Children England to build Britain’s first Barnahus known as “Child’s House for Healing”.

Support and justice under one roof

The Child’s House for Healing will be a child-friendly, safe and welcoming place for children to go to, as an alternative to courts, social work offices and police stations. Designed to feel like a family home, the Child’s House will be a space where child victims and witnesses can give evidence, receive medical care, take part in decisions about their protection and get support to recover from the trauma they have experienced.

It is inspired by the internationally renowned Barnahus model, first developed in Iceland. Scotland is also part of the European Barnahus Movement, PROMISE, to share learning and promote best practice.

A catalyst for change

Children and families repeatedly tell us that the justice system causes them further harm. Many children have said they found our current system of justice more traumatic than the experience that brought them into contact with the system. The impact can last a lifetime.

By reducing the number of times a child needs to talk about what’s happened to them the Child’s House for Healing will ensure children get justice, reduce the trauma they experience and can begin to recover more quickly. Our ambition is that this first Child’s House will be a catalyst for change that transforms our systems of care and justice across Scotland and Great Britain.

Watch an interview with Children 1st Chief Executive, Mary Glasgow, about the Child’s House on Rooftop TV: 


Thanks to the players of People’s Postcode Lottery

The Child’s House for Healing is being built thanks to players of People’s Postcode Lottery. It’s been made possible through £1.5 million of funding, awarded through the Postcode Dream Fund in March 2020. We are so incredibly grateful to players of People’s Postcode Lottery for their support, and making the dream for child victims and witnesses come true.

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Progress towards the Child’s House for Healing

These pages will be updated with the latest information about the Child’s House for Healing, as it progresses.