James’ Story

James was referred to The Haven Wolverhampton after he and his mom were subjected to domestic abuse by his mom’s partner.  

He told us how The Haven supported him to talk openly about his feelings, and how he loved accessing Virtual Reality (VR) therapy.  

VR therapy is one of the most well-received services we offer to children like James at The Haven. 85% of have said that they prefer this kind of play-based therapy to the standard counselling they had received in the past. 100% have said it is the best thing they have tried and would like it to be more readily available to them when they are distressed.  


y mum and I had to leave our old house because her partner was violent and not very nice. He used to shout a lot, and it made me really sad. So, we went to live with family, but their house was so full, and we had barely any
space for ourselves. That’s when The Haven came to our rescue!

I really wanted my own room and a special place to be happy, but it seemed almost impossible. Then, my super nice support worker started meeting me every week. At first, I felt all mixed up and confused inside, but she was
like a friendly fairy who made everything feel better. She asked if I wanted to try Virtual Reality (VR) stuff, and I was
like, “Yes, please!”

I’ve always wanted to go to a cool theme park, but I never got the chance. But guess what? My support worker made it happen with VR magic! I got to ride huge rollercoasters, swim deep under the sea, and even walk on the moon! It was like real-life magic!

With her help, we found a new place to live—a cosy little home with my very own bedroom! I was so happy, and guess what? I got to pick my bedding, and it had characters from my favourite game!

I loved spending time with my support worker. She’s like a friend who really listens and helps me feel safe. Now I know I can talk about how I feel, and it’s like a magical spell that makes everything feel better.

Thanks to The Haven, my mum and I found happiness again. They made everything feel like magic and showed us that dreams really can come true. I’m super excited about our new life, and I know that with The Haven by our side, every day will be full of joy!

Related Stories

If you are in immediate danger, please call 999

How can we help?

I need to talk to someone on the phone

Our free helpline is available on 08000 194 400 24 hours a day or you can send us a message via WhatsApp on 07719 558183 (Mon-Fri 9.00am – 5.00pm).

I would like to chat to someone by text

We understand that telephone conversations are not for everyone. Our online chat services is available Mon-Fri 9.00am – 5.00pm. Click here to start a chat now.

I want to learn more about your services for children

If you are just curious about how we support children and young people, you are on the right page. Please click here to find out more.

I want to refer myself or someone else for support or advice

You can make a referral by calling our helpline on 08000 194 400 24 hours a day or via email at referralpoint@havenrefuge.org.uk.

I would like some learning resources

We are currently developing some fun and engaging learning resources for you to download.
Please email media@havenrefuge.org.uk to find out more.

Life in Refuge

When a child comes into one of our refuges they are greeted by a member of staff and given a welcome pack. The pack contains a gift, some information on the sessions we run in refuge and a meet-the-team profile to help children become familiar with the staff who will support them. We show children the play/sensory rooms and explain that we can hold one-to-one sessions and groups sessions.

Most importantly, we let the children know someone is always available, whenever they need to talk. We provide counselling sessions and play therapy sessions among other things with a dedicated team, trained to support children and young people. We understand that for a child, moving into a new environment, leaving behind all their familiar comforts can be especially difficult. We try our best to make life in refuge as “homely” as possible.

For Children