Foundation Launched 2014
IGFF began its ground-breaking work supporting survivors of religious institutional abuses in 1997 as In Good Faith and Associates. As Founder, Helen Last, began the provision of critical advocacy and support for an emerging number of male survivors reporting historical religious institutional abuses. Helen’s earlier work as a national sexual violence prevention consultant for CASA saw a comprehensive response developed that continues to inform the practice of IGFF today.
IGFA began as an independent, self-funded organisation and established an expert practitioners’ network to respond immediately to survivors, family and church community members. This referral network provided access to mental and medical health, social welfare, legal advice, police, resources, community development and pastoral care. In 2003, IGFA realised that the large number of survivors they supported were willing to form a community action group and act as agents for social change and institutional reform. This initiative was formalised in 2007 and ‘The Melbourne Victims’ Collective’ (MVC) was founded.
In 2012, the Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into the Handling of Child Abuse by Religious and Other Organisations commenced and IGFA saw demand for our services expand exponentially. Throughout 2012-13 IGFA initiated and presented education forums in key Victorian locations to build community awareness and engagement with this critical Government initiative.
In August 2013, IGFA transitioned into the charitable structure of In Good Faith Foundation (IGFF) coinciding with our first Federal Government grant to provide comprehensive Royal Commission Support Services supplemented by ongoing private donations. The focus of the last five years has been to maintain high-level services to over 600 survivors of religious institutional abuse. Maintaining our MVC throughout this time has kept the survivor community involved and empowered.