For anyone who has been hurt in some way by abuse there are certain steps that will be followed by the Institute of Our Lady of Mercy:
Respond – It takes great courage to be able to speak out about abuse at any time, but even more so when many years have passed. In the Institute of Our Lady of Mercy we listen carefully to anyone speaking about their experience of abuse.
Listen – Key elements of a good listener would include:
- Giving one’s time freely
- Looking at the person revealing the abuse
- Acknowledging the pain, fear and anger of the person sharing information
- Not offering solutions
- Not interrupting the speaker
- Showing compassion always
Those disclosing their abuse are not to blame in any way. Many of those abused are fearful about whether they will be believed. Our priority is to help them feel at ease about sharing their experiences. It shall be explained to them that confidentiality cannot be promised as information has to be passed on to the appropriate authorities. However, they should be assured that the information will be kept secure.
Support – The Institute of Our Lady of Mercy is committed to supporting anyone who has suffered from abuse. Our Safeguarding Co-Ordinator will give both time and space for the person to share their experiences. They will explain if information must be passed onto others and why. Those abused will be supported during any investigation and they will be directed to any other organisations that can offer support and services to them.
Safeguarding Co-Ordinator – Sr Clare Smith
Telephone: 0114 235 1540
Institute of Our Lady of Mercy Safeguarding Commission
Safeguarding Commission Chair: John Donnelly