Date of Award


Degree Type

Thesis - ECU Access Only

Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology


School of Psychology and Social Science


Faculty of Computing, Health and Science


Breathing Space is a residential centre offering therapeutic intervention for up to twelve men who engage in domestic violence. This research was a qualitative programme evaluation of the processes used within the Breathing Space therapeutic community. Observations and interviews were conducted on ten residents and eight staff. Positive findings revealed that both residents and staff perceived significant benefits from attending Breathing Space. Neither staff nor residents uniformly believed that treatment would reduce violence. Two of the most beneficial factors reported by residents were the ability to talk about their issues and the non-judgemental environment. Suggested improvements included strengthening of professional boundaries, greater screening of residents, enforced attendance at group therapy, and a greater focus on criminogenic needs.