Felixstowe: Sex abuse on the increase

A RISING number of sexual abuse cases being reported at Felixstowe has prompted an organisation to set up a service to offer support to victims.

Survivors in Transition first set up a drop-in centre in Ipswich in 2009, to help men and women who suffered abuse during childhood.

The group realised there was a need for the service after seeing women from Felixstowe attend the Ipswich drop-in centre.

Agencies that have been working with the organisation also reported cases which were happening in Felixstowe.

Fiona Ellis, chairman of SiT, said: “There’s a need for it definitely.

“We have had a number of women from Felixstowe coming to Ipswich.

“Having worked with different agencies including social services, children’s centres, carers and therapists there were consistently high levels being reported, like there is in the rest of the county and the country.

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“We have worked closely with men and women from Felixstowe over the last two years, which is why we thought it would be an obvious next choice.”

The Felixstowe drop-in centre offers women in the town a place to come to talk with people who have been through similar experiences and to take part in activities.

There is no need to disclose any information, but there is the option of therapy sessions if wanted.

The Felixstowe centre was officially opened late last year and bosses at the organisation hope that residents will take up the opportunity to come to the sessions.

Ms Ellis added: “Taking the first step is the hardest thing and we recognise the bravery it takes to attend in the first place.

“We encourage survivors to take that first step. They will be welcomed and they won’t need to make any disclosures.”

A spokeswoman for Suffolk County Council added: “Suffolk County Council welcomes the Survivors in Transition drop-in centre in Felixstowe.

“Any service that offers support to individuals that have experienced a difficult or traumatic upbringing is always welcomed. We look forward to continuing to work with the organisation.”

? The SiT meeting is held every Monday at the Sea Breeze Centre, in Beach Station Road, from 10am to noon.

If you would like more information, visit www.survivorsintransition. co.uk, or call 07765052282.