Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center’s Intimate Partner Abuse Education Program (IPAEP) is a 40-week program certified by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health for people who use violence in an intimate relationship. The program promotes the safety of domestic violence survivors by holding individuals who use violence accountable for their actions and helping them change their behavior.
Participants are required by the referral source to attend group meetings every week and to pay for their services. Groups are co-led by certified Intimate Partner Abuse educators. The program is rooted in the philosophy that psycho-educational support and skill-building are key to creating change. Participants are taught through group work how to recognize abusive and violent behaviors, and how to develop tools to react and engage positively. Discussions also center around the root causes of abusive behaviors, understanding belief systems, and creating healthy relationships.
In addition to weekly groups, staff make contact with partners and ex-partners of group participants to check on their well-being and offer additional resources and support.
IPAEP Certification Training
Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center is one of three agencies in the state approved by Massachusetts Department of Public Health to provide IPAEP certification. This training certification is a state requirement for group facilitators and those who work with people who use violence in an intimate relationship. The training is also ideal for probation officers, advocates, social service providers, law enforcement, educators, health care workers and others who are working to end domestic violence.
The Strong Fathers program is for dads working to end the cycle of violence in their family. The program provides education on the important role that fathers play in the well-being of their families, teaches parenting skills, and increases the understanding of the impact of domestic violence on children.
The curriculum, developed by North Carolina-based organization Pathways for Change, is a strengths-based approach rooted in a belief that all men want to be good fathers and that their motivation should be recognized, rewarded, and reinforced without minimizing the effects of their violence or excusing their actions.
The program consists of two-hour group sessions for 20 weeks during which participants develop new tools for parenting and partnering in an environment of support, friendship, education, and growth. Facilitators have been trained in the curriculum and foster a welcoming and encouraging environment as participants make changes in their behavior to benefit themselves and their families. This is an elective program that is free to attend, with a maximum of 10 participants in each group. The enrollment process typically begins with a referral from the courts, social
services, and other community organizations.
Intimate Partner Abuse Education Program
370 Merrimack Street
Lawrence, MA 01843
Evelyn Martinez, Program Coordinator (ext. 10):
Gail Bonenfant, Counselor (ext. 11):
Kimberly Sullivan-Brewer, Counselor (ext. 14):
Jayne Meija, Program Support: