Online Project Showcase

Community Based Counselling: Empowering women who have experienced childhood sexual assault.

  • Organisation:

    Full Stop Foundation

  • ABN or Auspicing Organisation:


  • Scope of Activity:


  • Geographic Location:


  • Target Groups:

    Business Professionals
    Gay and Lesbian
    Rural / Regional


Funding Information

  • Total Funding Required (AUD):


  • Current Funding (AUD):


  • Funding Needed (AUD):


  • Tax Deductability Status (DGR):


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Project Information

  • Project Commencement Date:
  • 01 Feb 2019
  • Project Completion Date:
  • 01 Feb 2020
  • What issues are addressed?:
  • Women who have experienced childhood sexual assault typically experience significant psychological and emotional distress in adult life due to the complex trauma they experience. This can significantly impact their ability to build successful relationships impacting their family life and children. There is an increased risk of self-harm, suicide attempts, and substance abuse. They are also more likely to suffer economic and social disadvantage and are more vulnerable to domestic violence.

    Our Community Based Counselling model has been developed from an evidence base that shows the benefits of face to face, trauma informed counselling, helping women to move beyond their experience of trauma to achieve more meaningful lives.

    With the long-term specialised support our service provides, we are able to support women to decrease their vulnerability to further abuse, improve their mental health, and build positive relationships with children, family and partners.
  • Project Description:
  • Our Community Based Counselling Program provides specialist trauma counselling to women who have experienced childhood sexual assault. We currently operate out of six Women’s Health Centres in NSW . Counselling is provided by highly qualified, experienced trauma specialists. Up to five 60 minute individual counselling sessions per day are provided at each location. Women accessing the service can receive up to 24 months of counselling in total. Most women accessing our services are unable to afford private counselling and our service is a lifeline.

    We currently have waiting lists for every counsellor across our six service locations in NSW, however we have identified that Penrith is in most need of expansion of the program.

    With additional support we will be able to provide up to an extra of 240 counselling sessions over 12 months supporting up to 20 women in Penrith who experienced sexual assault as a child.
  • Alleviating suffering / disadvantage?:
  • For women who have experienced childhood sexual assault their experiences and complex trauma can devastate their adult lives. Our Community Based Counselling Program is designed to help women move past their trauma.

    Our focus is on reducing their vulnerability to further abuse such as domestic violence, improving their mental health and positive relationships with partners, and children.
  • Changing Policy, Practices & Systems?:
  • The Full Stop Foundation (an arm of Rape & Domestic Violence Services Australia) advocates for trauma informed policy practises and system changes to ensure our legal system and government policy meet the needs of women experiencing sexual assault, domestic or family violence. We do this through government advocacy and as a leading voice in the women’s sector with over 40 years of experience in providing counselling and support services.

    Although our Community Based Counselling Program does not directly change policy and practices, it does feed into our knowledge base and expertise in this area.
  • Investing in or empowering women?:
  • Our Community Based Counselling Program helps women to regain control of their lives. By expanding this program in Penrith we will be able to support up to 20 women through their ongoing trauma. Our program empowers women through improvements in their mental health, by building stronger and more positive relationships with their families, partners and children and decreases their vulnerability to further abuse such as entering or remaining in domestic violence relationships.
  • Media / Promotion?:
  • Due to the sensitive nature of working with women impacted by childhood sexual abuse there is no direct media component of this work. However the Full Stop Foundation (Rape & Domestic Violence Services Australia) has a long history of engagement with media to promote the needs of women impacted by sexual assault, family and domestic violence.
  • How is success evaluated / measured?:
  • Our counsellors review their practises on an ongoing basis through clinical supervision, our Clinical Director also works directly to report on the outcomes of this program.

    Our counselling is best practice and evidenced based. We report clinical data on a quarterly basis as well as qualitative feedback from clients.

    The program's main outcome will be decreased vulnerability and improved mental health outcomes for adult female survivors of childhood sexual assault in NSW.

Contact Information

  • Contact Person:

    Verity Appleby

  • Email:

  • Website:

    Click Here

  • Phone: