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Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can I self-refer into your service?

Yes, absolutely.

Please see our Contact Us page for details of how.

  • Do I have to have a case going through a police investigation or the courts to access your service?

No, we provide support to anyone who has experienced sexual abuse. You do not have to be accessing the criminal justice system to get our support.

  • I am thinking of making a report to the police. Can I speak to you first to find out my options?

Yes, absolutely. Our ISVA’s are full trained and experienced in providing impartial and independent information about your options and rights. They can answer any questions you may have. You can then make an informed decision about what the right thing to do, for you is. If you decide to report, your ISVA can support and guide you through the process.

  • Are a counsellor and an ISVA the same thing?

No, their roles, and the support they provide are very different. A counsellor will provide counselling, where you explore your feelings, reactions and responses, whereas an ISVA will support you through the criminal justice process (if you decide to pursue this route) and will provide you with practical support.

  • Will I have to tell my ISVA/ Counsellor what happened to me?

You won’t discuss what happened with your ISVA. Your ISVA will work with you to identify the impact that the abuse has had on your life and to help you put together a support plan to try to help get your life back on track.

Depending on what type of counselling you access, you may or may not explore what has happened to you. If you have a court case going on, you will receive a special type of counselling where you do not discuss the details of what happened to you. This is to prevent anything that may jeopardise your court case. Other forms of counselling talk about your experiences to help you to cope and recover from them.

You will always have an initial assessment before starting any form of support to ensure that you are being put forward for the right support for you at that time.

  • Can I provide feedback about the support I receive?

Yes, absolutely. We welcome feedback and will ask you for feedback either throughout your time with us, or just at the end, depending on what support you received from us. This is to help us improve our service.

We also have a consultation Panel. The focus of this group will be to look at organisational policies, procedures and service provision and provide input in to updating them. If you are interested in taking part in this, please Contact Us.

  • Are Axis’s staff specially trained?

Our ISVA’s are all either trained and accredited Independent Sexual Violence Advisors; or hold a Postgraduate Certificate in Advocacy for victims of sexual violence.  The ISVA Development Programme is an accredited professional course which is accredited by the awarding body NCFE.  Both courses have been developed to meet the Skills for Justice National Occupational Standards (NOS) relevant for ISVA’s.  All newly recruited ISVA’s commence their training within 6 months of recruitment and are fully supported and supervised.  A number of our ISVA’s have also completed their Advanced ISVA training.

Axis has an experienced team of qualified male and female counsellors who have been specifically trained to help our clients overcome the traumatic events of their childhood. You can choose whether to see a male or female counsellor. They are all registered with the British Association for Psychotherapy and Counselling or another professional body.

  • Can I see Axis’s strategic plan, policies and procedures?

As a client of Axis, if you wish to access a copy of our strategic plan, or any policies or procedures that affect you can ask by contacting us.

To access published financial information, please visit Axis’s page on the Companies House website by following the link below:


We’d love to involve our clients in the review process, so please let us know if you are interested in getting involved by contacting us.

  • Do the ISVA’s and Counsellors get support?

Yes, all of our Counsellors receive a minimum of 1.5 hours of external clinical supervision per month, plus 1.5 hours per month management supervision.

All of our ISVA’s receive a minimum of 1 hour per month external clinical supervision; and a minimum of 2 hours line management supervision per month for experienced staff or 3 hours per month for new recruits, staff in training and newly accredited ISVA’s.

Funding and Supporters

Axis is Funded by a number of different organisations and private donations

Membership and Quality

Axis is membership of, or accredited by, a number of organisations

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