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IGFF’s April Newsletter

As the team at IGFF have become accustomed to working from home, our case workers have been ensuring that client support and advocacy continue with as little disruption as possible.

This newsletter outlines just a few of our key activities during this this time of physical distancing, from supporting Survivors through this month’s intense media coverage to our Mutual Aid Database, helping grassroots and established organisations work together to support our communities, as well as plans for upcoming activities. 

More details on how IGFF is tackling working from home and COVID-19 can be found in our letter from last month, available here.

 

IGFF’s Response to the April High Court Decision

This has been a hard month for Survivors of institutional abuse, their families and their supporters. In response to the High Court decision at the beginning of April, our CEO Clare Leaney wrote:

IGFF will continue to support and work with Survivors to ensure that they have the practical support needed to come to terms with this decision.

I would like to specifically acknowledge and recognise the incredible strength and courage displayed by the complainant and families throughout this entire process. You are strong, you are heard and you are believed. 

The pursuit of what’s right is not a straight road. There will be setbacks. But our resolve is absolute, and our fight is too important to rest until justice has been served.

To all Survivors: we hear you, we see you and we believe you.


Messages of Solidarity

 

Throughout the past month, many in the community have stood with Survivors and we have chosen some messages of solidarity. We take heart in their words and commit to changing the imbalance of power. You can click through this gallery of images here.

 

"I would like to reassure child sexual abuse survivors that most people recognise the truth when they hear it. They know the truth when they look it in the face. I am content with that. … This case does not define me. I am not the abuse I suffered as a child. I am a man who came forward for my friend who, sadly, is no longer with us. I am a man doing my best to be a loving dad, partner, son, brother and friend. I am doing my best to find and hold joy in my life and to provide a safe and loving home for my family.” – Witness J

"Survivors We hear you We believe you We love you" – Anglican Parish of Gosford

"I make no comment about today’s High Court decision. But I have a message for every single victim and survivor of child sex abuse: I see you. I hear you. I believe you." – Dan Andrews

"We know this is a tough day for so many. The news that George Pell has been released, has left us utterly gutted. We stand in sympathy with the brave victims who have to endure yet another devastating disappointment in their journey for justice. To those who've found the courage to stand up, we believe you." – Dassi Erlich; Beyond a Survivor

A man tying ribbons to the gate of the monastery where Pell is staying, in solidarity with Survivors. Source: Ian Currie/News Corp Australia

Supporting the Supporters: Mutual Aid Database

 

 

As Australia faces the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, there has never been a greater need for grassroots support organisations and services.

In Good Faith Foundation is working with community support organisations and the Australian Youth Climate Coalition to create a ‘Mutual Aid Database’ of different community groups and mutual aid organisations across Australia.

You can access the database here: http://tiny.cc/9ibhlz

The key focus of this is to provide a networking tool that can be accessed remotely by organisations and individuals to assist in providing practical welfare when existing services are under pressure. It also feeds into the Helpful Neighbours map, which can be useful in locating specific groups in your local area: https://www.helpfulneighbours.com.au/find-mutual-aid

We know that our emergency support services are already working at capacity and that demand for these services will only increase.

Now is the time for established foundations like In Good Faith, to be supporting these grassroots efforts to ensure that no one is left behind. By implementing our Mutual Aid Database, we hope to take some of the pressure off essential support services and help empower grassroots organisations to support their communities.

Access the Mutual Aid Database here: http://tiny.cc/9ibhlz

Upcoming Activities

We would like to confirm that we will be seeking to hold Melbourne Victims’ Collective meetings electronically during this period of physical distancing, and we will update the Collective on the specifics soon – in the meantime, if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch. 

The IGFF team have been discussing possible ideas for linking people experiencing social isolation with video chat based social groups or activities. Some suggestions so far have included: 

  • ‘Crafternoon’ activities, like crochet or knitting,
  • Book club or movie discussions, with films found on free-to-air services,
  • Topics to talk about (or debate!) and trivia nights,
  • Yoga sessions,
  • Jigsaw puzzles or multiplayer games – potentially even storytelling games.

If you have any suggestions for activities we could run through video chats, or would be particularly interested in any of these suggestions, please do let us know!

If you have any more questions about what we’ve been up to, how we can support Survivors, or any of our services, you can leave a message for us to call back at (03) 9940 1533 or email igff@igff.org.au.


Donate now to support the work of the Foundation


IGFF is committed to achieving justice for Survivors of institutional abuse. We acknowledge the strength, courage and sacrifices of all on the journey to recovery.

IGFF would like to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land on which we work and live. We pay our respect to Elders past, present and emerging.

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