Birchall Trust launches new strategy to amplify support for people affected by Rape and Sexual Abuse

The Birchall Trust, a leading organisation delivering trauma informed services across Cumbria and Lancashire, is dedicated to providing support and resources to people affected by rape and sexual abuse. We are  proud to announce the launch of our new strategic plan, designed to further enhance our  services and amplify our  impact in the community.

Our new strategy focuses of three key areas; meeting people’s needs, being a leading centre of excellence  and having strong community connections.

The plan builds on our core value of ensuring people using our services have a voice and choice in how they do so.  Everything we do is underpinned by our desire to act with empathy and integrity respecting and validating the feelings of people who have lived experience of rape and sexual abuse.

‘ Over the years we have seen the devastating impact of rape and sexual abuse on individuals, families and communities’ said Vanessa Dixon, CEO. ‘Our new strategy is designed to build on the work we do helping people to recover, but to also  raise awareness  around the subject, however uncomfortable a topic that may be,  to  challenge perceptions and call out inappropriate behaviour’

Key components of the new strategy include:

  • Enhanced Support Services; developing a befriender service, expanding peer support groups, online resources, our counselling and wellbeing services.
  • Launching a specialist training and education platform delivering blended learning opportunities with a particular focus on trauma informed practice and Bystander Training.
  • Creating strong community connections to galvanise a movement that will champion awareness of the impact of rape and sexual abuse and reduce stigma.

” The impact of rape and sexual abuse on people’s lives is far reaching and often under estimated.  It can affect people’s physical health, emotions, impulse control, self image and ability to think, learn, concentrate and form relationships, “ said Dr Paula Cook, Chair of Trustees.  “ We are excited by this new step to help deepen our work in the diverse local cultures we are part of,  as we support those on their own journeys of recovery. ”  

To mark the launch of our new strategy we are looking for dedicated and compassionate individuals to join our team as volunteers and trustees.  Anyone interested can contact us through our website.

‘ My experience with Birchall has been nothing but excellent, I never felt judged and even though sometimes it was tough, I was able to work through things in a safe way.’

‘ My child came to see one of the play therapists, I have seen such an improvement; laughing, smiling, skipping and less worried about things. The experience was brilliant for her’


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