The Violence Reduction Partnership's (VRP) Knowledge Hub are continuously striving to better understand the scale and extent of violence in West Yorkshire as well as those root causes and protective factors that may make a person more susceptible or protect them from violence involvement or exploitation.

Adversity, Trauma, Resilience

A review of life-course evidence, approaches and provision to support the transformation to a trauma informed health and care system by 2030. Produced by Humankind in partnership with the West Yorkshire Health and Care Partnership and West Yorkshire Violence Reduction Partnership.

The report uses 5 evidence sources, a rapid evidence review, mapping exercises, lived experience accounts, an equalities impact assessment and future demand estimates, to answer the following five questions:

  1. How do individuals make meaning out of trauma, how do they move beyond trauma, and what does a life after trauma look like?
  2. How do we identify and prevent adversity and trauma (in children and young people)?
  3. How do we prevent the re-traumatisation of people who are in services?
  4. What are the system changes and drivers we need to stimulate?
  5. What different things need to happen at place and systems levels?




Domestic Abuse Perpetrator Programmes Evaluation 

The West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Violence Reduction Unit commissioned Red Quadrant, to conduct a comprehensive study on domestic and sexual violence perpetrator interventions. 

The study involved the following:

  1. Review the existing literature on the theory and practice of perpetrator interventions, including their effectiveness, challenges and limitations.
  2. Map the current provision of perpetrator services and programmes in West Yorkshire, identifying any gaps.
  3. Recommend appropriate, feasible and cost-effective interventions for potential delivery in West Yorkshire.





Drugs and Alcohol


In an update to Drugs and Alcohol research in 2022, the VRP commissioned HumanKind to explore the impact of Drugs and Alcohol across stakeholder groups which include service providers. 

  1. Guidance Document - A co-production framework for services and communities alike.
  2. Guidance Document - A guide to destigmatising services for people who access them.
  3. Mental Health Guidance Document: Guidance for expanding access to mental health support for people in substance treatment services.
  4. Review Document - A review of selected approaches to widening and sustaining engagement in substance treatment.
  5. Outcomes - Improving outcomes for service users and supporting better equipped drug and alcohol services

Please find the 2023 summaries and reports below.








Humankind was commissioned by West Yorkshire VRP in November 2021 so that so that they and their stakeholders may better understand the context and interdependencies between substance use and violence among young people and how relationships between generations influence those links.

The Review is structured in four parts:

  1. Context and Literature Review – containing an Executive Summary, Overview of all Findings, Conclusion and Recommendations, References.
  2. Briefing on the Alcohol Harm Paradox – stand-alone paper with Literature Review, Findings and Recommendations, References.
  3. Briefing on the Impact of Covid-19 on Young People’s Substance Use and Violence standalone paper with Literature Review, Findings and Recommendations, References.
  4. Review of Evidence from Young People and Family Services and themes from mapping services.

The recommendations made in this Review are proposed in the context that most—if not all— services and support will be moving towards individual and collective trauma informed approaches of service delivery with the aim of preventing further trauma.






Education Inclusion

Crest Advisory partnered with West Yorkshire Violence Reduction Partnership (VRP) to examine patterns and trends of school exclusions in West Yorkshire and what factors contributed to them, paying special attention to the period since the outbreak of Covid-19.

The final report explores evidence about ‘what works’ to reduce unnecessary school exclusions, maintain an inclusive educational environment and pursue educational initiatives aimed at cutting serious violence and the exploitation of young people.



Education, Employment and Training

This independently conducted literature review by the Violence Reduction Partnership's Knowledge Hub  explores the existing work on relationships between  young people who are not in education, employment, or training (NEET) and violent crime. 

You can read the latest report and key findings.

Report 2023


The VRP commissioned Humankind to investigate the extent to which housing is a risk factor for violence within West Yorkshire.

The research explored the intersections between access to safe, secure, appropriate, and affordable accommodation with experiences of violence, alongside a range of other lines of enquiry. 

You can read the latest report and key findings.

Executive Summary

Report 2023


Mental Health

Rocket Science was commissioned by West Yorkshire VRP in November 2021 to research the links between low-level mental health issues and violence amongst young people. To address the research questions, Rocket Science undertook an extensive evidence review to understand the issues, and then conducted consultation with young people, parents, youth workers and teachers. This was done using a mix of surveys, focus groups, workshops and interviews.

Key findings suggest that mental health issues are a growing issue among young people, with data showing that they particularly affect girls in their teens. The prevalence has increased over the past years due to COVID-19 with the loss of routine, lack of school structure, social isolation, and prolonged uncertainty being key factors.

In addition, the presentation and interpretation of mental health issues differs between boys and girls, likewise their experiences of violence are likely to be different. Risk and protective factors are broadly similar for both mental health and for violence and include family situation, lack of engagement with school, adverse childhood experiences, special educational needs and being NEET (not in employment, education, or training).

Access to activities and support is inconsistent across West Yorkshire; availability, transport and cost of activities were reported as the main barriers to taking part in support.





The West Yorkshire VRP conducted research in relation to school absence, exclusion, and special educational needs (SEN) and/or neurodiversity. 

The research was completed in partnership with Rocket Science and concludes that the elevated rates of exclusion, suspension and absence are as a result of systemic, structural and cultural issues that exist with the education and adjoining systems.

You can read the latest report and key findings.



The West Yorkshire VRP conducted research into neurodivergent young people’s experience of violence. The review brings together evidence from published research and consultations with perspectives from both experts in the field of neurodiversity and young people.

The research was completed in partnership with Rocket Science and acknowledges the difficulty in drawing conclusions on neurodiversity, given its under-diagnosis and a lack of awareness of across systems and services. However, it is apparent that whilst the risk factors for involvement in violence are the same for neurotypical and neuroatypical young people those who are neurodiverse are more likely to experience some risk factors, particularly in relation to social isolation and exposure to traumatic life events as a result of their diversity.



Raising Aspirations

Rocket Science was commissioned by the West Yorkshire Violence Reduction Partnership (VRP) in November 2021 to understand how the aspirations of young people could be raised and how to improve their educational attainment to support their longer-term employment and training prospects across key transition points in their education journey. The overarching research questions underpinning this research were:

  • What is the current state of aspirations and attainment in West Yorkshire?
  • What risk factors and barriers to aspirational development are there?
  • What interventions are effective at raising aspirations?

The research found that the majority of young people they spoke to in West Yorkshire had positive aspirations, which were predominantly focused on particular career routes, but also included goals related to education and lifestyle. The report highlighted several key findings that could impact on a young person’s aspirations, noting the importance of positive role models, parents and engagement in education to name a few and provided recommendations for how the Violence Reduction Partnership can appropriately respond.




Serious Violence and Exploitation of Young People

Crest Advisory worked with the Health and Care Partnership and the VRP to conduct a broad research piece on serious violence and exploitation of young people in the Police Force Area; assessing what personal and area level health, social, and structural inequalities are acting as drivers or catalysts in their engagement in criminality and exploitation. This has been completed by identifying and engaging with a range of stakeholders (including young people and service users), publicly available crime data and insight from local services.

This report brings together this qualitative and quantitative evidence, a best practice review, and sets out recommendations that can help the H&CP and the VRP to leverage their resources and influence to minimise the impact and onset of health inequalities under the key objective of violence reduction and youth safety.



Social Media

The VRP conducted research to refine our understanding of what young people’s experiences of being online are in West Yorkshire, what impact this has on their mental health, and what opportunities for education-based interventions may be to prevent, reduce and mitigate harm.

The research was completed in partnership with Social Finance and identified a clear gap in evidence-based, evaluated, education-based interventions addressing online harms.

You can read the latest report, and key findings. 


The West Yorkshire VRP conducted research to understand how social media use relates to violence and psychological harms among young people in West Yorkshire, and what the key opportunities for harm mitigation are.

The research found that more than 2/3 of young people who use social media view upsetting content on it. In addition, most young people experience poorer mental health as a result of distressing content on social media. Also, in some cases, harassment and abuse on social media can lead to low level violence and conflict, such a school fights and in rare cases is associated with serious violence.

The research recommended that trauma-informed education-based support is developed and co-designed with young people to ensure it meets their needs.

This research has been completed in partnership with the Centre of Criminal Justice, in 2021. Then independent consultancy Rocket Science in 2022. 

REPORT 2022 



Ten Years On: Stalking in Kirklees, Policing and Support for Victims

The West Yorkshire VRP is working with the University of Huddersfield on an action research project, which aims to establish a clearer picture of stalking in Kirklees.

It includes how West Yorkshire Police is currently policing stalking and identifying gaps in support for survivors, so they can get the protection and support they need, as early as possible to ensure their safety and reduce trauma.

The project specifically aims to:

  • Set up a stalking research, prevention and practice hub linked to the Secure Societies Institute: this will be a forum through which practice and academic learning from the project will be shared across Kirklees, West Yorkshire and beyond.
  • Review police data on stalking and investigative decision making in stalking.
  • Identify current support for victims of stalking in Kirklees and reviewing best practice for stalking victims/survivors.
  • Consult women who have been survivors/victims of stalking about their experiences of support and policing, get their views on improving support and criminal justice responses.
  • Produce a code signed model for a stalking support provision, produced with victims of stalking, their advocates, domestic and sexual abuse services, women's and girls services and other organisations.




Ten Years On: Stalking in Kirklees, Policing and Support for Victims Trauma Informed Education Settings Insight West Yorkshire

The aims of this study are two-fold: firstly, to evaluate the early outcomes of the pilot study known as, ‘The Innovation Project’, at Outwood Academy Hemsworth and secondly, to examine trauma informed programs in West Yorkshire schools and educational institutions that have committed to strengthening educational outcomes for vulnerable young people through attachment and trauma-informed methods. Furthermore, this research sets out to identify barriers and opportunities experienced in their implementation.



Violence Against Women and Girls

Violence against women and girls (VAWG) cannot be underestimated, it is an inherent societal problem that takes many forms and has damaging consequences. Conviction rates for VAWG are poor and can deter women from reporting abuse. Victim withdrawal, due to distrust, and evidential difficulties contribute to low conviction rates. Women and girls can be victims, perpetrators, mothers, bystanders, and recruiters. Whilst this typology is not exhaustive, it aims to cover the key aspects of their involvement in violence. The roles of perpetrators, bystanders, and recruiters warrants further research, especially in a UK or West Yorkshire context.

Trauma, school disengagement and addiction have been presented as risk factors for perpetration and victimisation. Age, ethnicity, religion, and identity have been acknowledged as key components to understanding the varying needs of women and girls. Engagement with women in our region is required to ensure the needs summarised from literature are accurate for West Yorkshire.

West Yorkshire’s diversity means a singular, universal approach to reducing the risk of VAWG cannot be adopted. In response to this, a long-term public health approach, which tackles the deep rooted and engrained social, health and economic problems facing women and girls is the best chance to addressing VAWG.



West Yorkshire Violence Reduction Unit