The VRU aims to build on success of the Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP) Programme that VRU Scotland rolled out across 100 schools. Developed in the 1990’s by Dr Jackson Katz, it utilises a creative bystander approach to prevent all forms of bullying and gender based violence.
MVP works by questioning social norms, realigning beliefs as well as giving reassurance that positive outcomes are possible.
MVP makes use of a simple playbook to provide discussion on a range of behaviours which can include CSE, bullying, control, knife carrying, alcohol and consent. However, themes can be tailored to issues being identified in the local area.
The programme utilises the power of the role-model. Supported by teachers and community partners, peer trainers are equipped with the skills and knowledge to work younger people around the issues above. The evidence from Scotland has been positive. Young people who have taken part say they feel able to help others. Schools are seeing less violence, less expulsions and a general feeling of safety. The skills the mentors develop also support them out of the school setting, for example assisting with University applications and job interviews post school.
Reduce likelihood of young people becoming involved in serious violence.
Improved behavioural outcomes, understanding and resilience.