Acts Fast was set up to fill a gap in provision in supporting the non-abusive parents, carers and family members in Dorset, whose child or children have been sexually abused. In many child sex abuse cases, the perpetrators are themselves a family member, which adds to the feelings of guilt and shame felt by the rest of the family, as well as issues resulting from the abuse and related trauma.
Acts Fast was established in 2014, and works alongside others, locally and nationally to raise awareness of child sexual abuse, and strengthen the support available for the non-abusive family members who are affected. It supports individuals and families together, to work through their emotions and build resilience around the trauma. It provides one-to-one counselling, as well as individual support sessions which offer practical and emotional support. More than 130 families have so far been supported and Acts Fast is seeing an increase in referrals.
In October 2018, the Foundation awarded £5,976 to Acts Fast. This funding will enable the organisation to increase the number and availability of specialist support sessions, and therefore help more families. Sessions are offered currently in venues in Bournemouth, Poole and Dorchester.