Fresh Start – new beginnings marks 5th anniversary

Children that have suffered abused or trauma often cannot speak about how they feel, but drawing is a valuable tool to help them express their feelings.

Diana Porter is the former Chief Executive of Fresh Start – new beginnings, a Suffolk charity that helps children who have been sexually abused.

Since 2012 the charity has helped well over 1,000 young people referred by the police, schools, health and social services, some as young as three years old.

Dianne explained, “The experiences that these innocents have been through are heart-breaking, difficult to listen to and will bring tears to your eyes. However, not everyone wanted to help them in the early days – or at least they didn’t want to be seen to be helping them.

When I was looking for funding there were many people who didn’t want their company name to be connected with sexual abuse so we came up against difficulties with getting support.”

“Also, at first glance, our services can appear expensive if you don’t realise how vital it is that we provide most of the support on a one-to-one basis. To deliver lasting healing, it can take months or even years and, although we achieve many positive outcomes we clearly can’t promote this success with the smiley faces of our young people in the way that many other organisations can.

The Foundation has been such a strong supporter in helping us break through many of these barriers by encouraging and supporting individual conversations, providing platforms for us to spread the positive impact of our work and gaining access to funding from all sorts of local and national funders including individuals, businesses, public sector funders, national trusts and foundations.

Five years on, without this continued and vital support from Suffolk Community Foundation I really don’t know where Fresh Start – new beginnings and the hundreds of children we help would be.”

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