Axis is an entirely independent charity established specifically to help victims of child sex abuse, historic child sex abuse, sexual assault and sexual abuse. Axis is not part of the council, or the police, or any other public body it is a private not for profit company and a registered charity. Axis provided support to over 1,100 individual clients in the last year, over 690 were for counselling support and over 500 used our Independent Sexual Violence Advisory service. The support and services Axis provides are entirely free to the clients and every client is assured that they are given the absolute protection of our strict confidentiality procedures and protocols. This means that Axis is not able to talk in any way about specific cases, or divulge anything that may breach these rules. This makes it very difficult to challenge some of the statements that are being made in the media, or indeed some of the ‘facts’ that are being purported concerning certain individual victims.
To give some perspective, Axis has had 5 victims identified under Operation Chalice referred to us since 2011, most of these actually used and benefited from our support and services. Whilst one victim is one too many in our view, we must not lose sight of the many others we support and continue to support who are not connected with Operation Chalice. Our clients cover a wide age range from 11 to over 65, many have suffered in total silence for many years, and Axis continues to provide a vital support service to them and all victims of sexual violence and sexual abuse.
Axis is funded by a number of sources including the Police and Crime Commissioner, the Ministry of Justice, the Clinical Commissioning Groups in Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin, and we receive a small amount of private donations. It is a fact that without the support of the public sector we simply could not provide our services. Would we like more funding? Of course! but then again almost every charity would! In the meantime we must continue to do as much as we possibly we can with the resources we have.
Axis actually welcomes the increased media coverage of the issues not just around child sex abuse but also all other sex crimes as it helps encourage victims to come forward, not be afraid to speak out and know that they will be listened to, believed and supported. Increased awareness also helps authorities identify and prosecute perpetrators.
Axis also welcomes the visit of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse and the Truth Project to Telford, and will be a participant in that process.
CEO. Axis Counselling.