Survivor Advisory Panel

Foreword

The role of the Survivor Advisory Panel (SAP) is to ensure that the National Catholic Safeguarding Commission (NCSC) receives appropriate and timely information and advice from a survivor perspective. This informs the work of the Commission regarding safeguarding policies, procedures and practices within the Catholic Church of England and Wales.

The SAP will provide the NCSC with:

  • Advice and recommendations on matters relevant to victims/survivors
  • Knowledge and insight into experience of abuse
  • A positive contribution to improve responses regarding victim
    disclosures and church support
  • Expertise to inform and influence work by highlighting previously unidentified areas/topics for attention
  • Input on NCSC media and communications strategy

Whilst accepting that victims and survivors perspectives cover a wide spectrum, it is hoped that the varied professional and/or personal backgrounds of the current members will enable SAP to provide valuable contributions to the work of the NCSC. Without exception, every panel member has a real passion for the perspective of the victim/survivor to be understood and represented.

 

SAP Members

Click on a member to find out more.

Dave Marshall QPM
Dave Marshall QPM Chair of the SAP

Dave retired from the Metropolitan police in 2010 with 30 years’ service which included investigating serious crime in this country and abroad. He was the operational head of the Paedophile Unit at New Scotland Yard and for the last 9 years of his service was a DCI responsible for a major investigation team dealing with complex child abuse and child homicides in London.

He is a Director of his own company which provides advice on safeguarding, investigation and management including training.

From 2012 – 2015 he was a member of the Acknowledgement Forum on the public inquiry into Historical Institutional Abuse between 1922 and 1995 in N. Ireland. His work with survivors on that inquiry and in the police has given him a real desire and passion for their voice to be heard and supported.

He is a trustee of a non-denominational church, as part of that church’s leadership team he has responsibility for Safeguarding.

His qualifications include a Master of Science degree in Forensic and Legal Psychology from the University of Leicester.

Tony Griffin
Tony Griffin

I am a retired Police Officer who first became involved in safeguarding children and vulnerable people in 1991 when the first structured procedures came into force. As a Detective Sergeant I developed the skills to listen to those that had been harmed by others and to investigate allegations of sexual abuse and other harmful behaviours perpetrated by family members and those in a position of trust within institutions such as schools, the voluntary sector, faith organisations. By working extensively with survivors, I gained a considerable understanding of how abuse can impact on them for the rest of their lives. It is important that survivors should be listened to and that organisations should respond appropriately and sensitively to allegations that are made.

In my role within the Safeguarding Advisory Panel I am committed to help improve the way that the Catholic Church responds to allegations of abuse.

Frances Healy
Frances Healy

I am a survivor of sexual abuse by a priest whom I approached for help as a young religious. (His claims to be a qualified counsellor and psychologist later proved groundless). The abuse was serious and sustained. Besides being sexual it was also emotional and spiritual. I left religious life as a result of his order to do so but continued to attend his ‘counselling’ sessions for many years.

After this ended I remained silent and in denial for decades. Subsequently, following years of personal therapy originally to deal with childhood trauma, I had to face up to the deep wound of sexual abuse. I want to help others to find their voice and to find at least some measure of healing.

I am a practising Catholic. Throughout my teaching career, which encompassed both the Primary and Secondary sectors, I have always taught in Catholic schools. In each context my main responsibility was as Head of Religious Studies. Latterly I trained in counselling and psychotherapy, then practised on a voluntary basis for a number of years. It was through my interaction with young people and their parents that this interest had been sparked. I longed to be of more help.

Now retired, I am particularly enjoying the freedom this affords to pursue my interests, to relax and to enjoy the companionship of friends on a more regular basis.

I am grateful to have this opportunity to speak up for those who have suffered abuse and hopefully also to assist the Church in however small a way, in its mission of healing.

Marie Grant
Marie Grant

I was brought up as a Catholic and I still practise today. I am a survivor of abuse as a child. Through counselling I am able to live with the pain, hurt and shame of what happened to me. Talking about what happened has enabled me to work through my isolation and fear.

I have taught in primary education for 33 years.  I was the Deputy Headteacher of an inner-city Catholic primary school in the Diocese of Hallam, where I was the Designated Safeguarding Lead. However, I felt that the role of Deputy Headteacher took me away from working with the children. I now teach in a state school. At the moment I work with a group of primary children who have been abused; using “The Beyond Words” series of books.

I am a member of the Survivors Advisory Panel.

Maxi ‘Leigh
Maxi ‘Leigh

My name is Maxi ‘Leigh, born in Nottingham and have a son who is  the true love of my life and my Persian cat “Prince Charles”.

I love writing, reading, spending many hours in my garden. Mindfullness & Yoga is essential for my peace of mind and harmony.

I am a “Survivor” of  sexual, physical, emotional & incestual  abuse, this started in the foster care system from the age of eight years until my escape aged 26 years of age.

My life looking very bleak and daunting,  impacting  my mental, physical health and wellbeing for many years being in and out of our NHS with self-harming and addictions.  The year 2000  I was handed a leaflet about a charity supporting female survivors of non-recent abuse, but because of my lack of self-esteem and confidence, I chose not make contact for another eight years,  looking after my leaflet I would carefully unfold, read it, folding it neatly away.

My friend encouraged me to contact the charity; why?  because I was sinking very fast after my breakdown. Walking through the doors that day  I knew my life was going to change; being  in a place with other victims and survivors overwhelmed me,  truly- I was NOT ALONE.

Eight months later I became Chair! I was then mentored by the previous Chief Executive Mr. Mike Cooke, C.B.E., he enhanced my life delving and  tapings into my hidden skills and strengths,  developing my inner potential, opening doors where I was able to have an effective and influential, proactive voice,  implementing good practice and a sensitive approach to supporting survivors of childhood abuse.  Now I sit on the following boards;

  • National Catholic Safeguarding Commission (Survivor Advisory Panel) supporting those abused within the Catholic Church & Institutions.
  • National Anglican Church Survivor Reference Group supporting those abused within the Anglican Church & Institutions.
  • Survivor Forum Nottingham City & Nottinghamshire County Council supporting those abused in social care
  • Survivor Forum iicsa to the National Jay Inquiry supporting those abused in social care
  • Forum member Age UK
  • Ambassador World Health Innovation Summit
  • Ambassador ‘Ask Me’ an end to Domestic Abuse & Violence
  • Epperstone Parish Councillor

I am now founder of a Charity (CIO) Called ‘Support for Survivors for the past five years but have been supporting survivors for the past 10 years,  supporting male and female survivors aged 16 plus abused from non-recent abuse in childhood.

My drive, my love, my  passion to change victims and survivors’ lives fills my heart. To put back a smile on their face; to hold their hand; to give hope and faith,  nothing compares.

It is an honour and a pleasure to have been chosen to be on the Survivor Advisory Panel for the NCSC. I will be committed and improve its response to survivors.

Andrew Browne
Andrew Browne

I was brought up in a Catholic family. Due to the silence and embarrassment around talking about sexuality, I could not tell anyone of the horror of being abused as a child. In fact, it stopped me talking about what was happening. I learnt not to trust adults and to fear life. It has been a long road back to mental and emotional health. But, I am getting there day by day.

On the days I hurt, I trust God and the friends I have around me who accept me as I am. I talk to them knowing they will listen, help and support me. They show me a path through the darkness of hurt and confusion to a vision of hope. I, in turn can help others who suffer and need that support

As a priest of the Hallam Diocese, it is good to know that the Church has found the courage to turn her attention to helping survivors. It is a privilege to be part of this mission – in the little way I can. The memories of abuse never go away. The feelings can come back at anytime. Yet I have learnt to talk about it, trust people who know what has happened and feel the feelings that come from that experience.

A way to a new understanding for growth is Adult Children of Alcoholics and Dysfunctional Families. This allows the Inner Child to find a safe place to trust others who hurt and look for support with others in a similar struggle.

A favourite book is The Silent Struggle by Sr. Marie Theres OCD, and well worth a read.

Panna Modi
Panna Modi

Panna was appointed as a member of the SAP in November 2015 and she continues to find the work rewarding as the Catholic Church continues to take forward strides in raising the survivor profile within and outside the Church.

Panna has in Child Protection and Public Protection agencies for over 30 years. Panna has extensive experience in Probation, Social Work, Counselling, Family Therapy, Mentoring and training. Since 1999 Panna has been working for the National Probation Service, based in the Divisional Sex Offender Treatment Unit. Her primary responsibility include risk assessment, staff training and delivering Accredited Group Work Programmes to men convicted of sexual offences. She is also trained to work with men with Learning Disabilities who have been convicted of sexual offences. Some of these men are dual status; they have been subjected to child sexual abuse, including neglect, physical and emotional abuse as well as bullying. Some men have been abused within the familial setting, occasionally by strangers as well as religious institutions and non religious organisations, such as the Football Association where she worked as a member of Safeguarding Review Panel.

Within the Probation Service she has also worked with females Survivors of sexual abuse. Prior to joining the Probation Service, she worked in Avon and Warwickshire Social Services Departments, including NSPCC, specialising in Child Protection and adult mental health services. Panna has also worked at Family Service Unit in Leicestershire where she was initially employed as a Family therapist and later a Joint Project Coordinator setting up services for adolescents and adult male sexual offenders as well as male and female Survivors of sexual abuse.

Anonymous
Anonymous

I have lived experience of sexual and spiritual abuse. There was a strong spiritual/ religious element to the abuse. This has had a significant impact upon my relationship not only with the church as an organisation but more importantly with God. 

 Consequently, when I became involved in church ministry later in life. I became increasingly stressed, anxious and depressed.  This led me to disclosing what at happened to a priest. The priest reported it to the diocesan safeguarding. Through counselling I have been able to explore the various aspects of abuse and the affect it has had upon my life. Ever since safeguarding has significant helped within the church and life and continues to do so.  

 I worked in mental health services for over 30 years until my retirement. Over that time safeguarding has developed and now plays an  important role in delivery of care to meeting the needs of the people it serves.  Currently, I work  in chaplaincy as a volunteer honorary chaplain.

 

Terms of Reference

1. Purpose: to ensure the NCSC receive appropriate and timely information and advice from the survivor perspective that will help inform the work of the NCSC and subsequently the safeguarding policies and practices within the Catholic Church of England and Wales.

2. Remit of the Survivor Advisory Panel:

The Panel will:
2.1 provide the NCSC with advice and recommendations on matters relevant to victims and survivors;
2.2 offer knowledge and insight into the experience of those who have been hurt by abuse;
2.3 make a positive contribution to the current agenda of the NCSC to improve responses to victim disclosures and the Church’s support for those hurt by abuse;
2.4 inform / influence the work of the NCSC by forwarding/receiving issues for discussion or ideas for pieces of work and as per the work plan of the Panel;
2.5 provide input on the NCSC media and communications strategy (where appropriate) for example, the annual report, literature and co presenting with the NCSC.

3. Group Membership:

3.1 It is important that the Panel provide a survivor perspective; to this end those who have been hurt by abuse should make up the majority membership;
3.2 Membership of the Panel will be made up of individuals who have experience of abuse, this could include:

    • direct personal experience of abuse by Catholic clergy or religious;
    • direct experience;
    • a parent of a child who has been abused;
    • a carer of a vulnerable adult who has been abused;
    • a person with extensive experience of working with survivors (including a representative from a national survivor group);
    • a health/social care professional with relevant knowledge and experience;

3.3 The Panel will have a maximum of twelve members.

4. Recruitment of members, including the Chairperson:

4.1 The NCSC will identify a suitable Chairperson for an initial 2 year appointment. Thereafter the post will be a three year appointment, although this will be subject to a decision to extend the duration of the Panel beyond the initial 3 year pilot phase;
4.2 All members will be appointed to a term of three years and will serve no more than two terms (and subject to the possible extension of the pilot phase). After initial members are appointed (up to a maximum of eight), further appointments will be staggered to ensure group continuity after the initial 3 year period;
4.3 In order to be open and transparent members will be recruited through advertisement via local and national networks;
4.4 Consideration should be given to gender balance when recruiting members;
4.5 Verbal feedback will be provided, on request, by the Chair of NCSC to any applicant not appointed. This will be in addition to a standard letter.

5. Method of working: Two way communication

5.1 The NCSC will identify work tasks to be undertaken by the Panel and the Panel will identify topics they feel the NCSC needs to consider;
5.2 The Chair of NCSC and the Chair of the Panel will agree a work plan, to be reviewed on a quarterly basis. A standard tool will be used that will aid evaluation and review;
5.3 This may result in briefing papers being presented to the NCSC.

6. Accountability:

6.1 The Chair of the Panel will report directly to the NCSC and will attend an NCSC meeting at least once a year, at the invitation of the NCSC;
6.2 Agenda items for the Panel meeting will be the responsibility of the Chair;
6.3 Minutes should be taken in line with agenda;
6.4 The link person from the NCSC will attend a Panel meeting periodically as agreed by NCSC and the Panel Chair and report back to the Commission;
6.5 Members will be required to sign a confidentiality and conflict of interest statement;
6.6 All contact with the media will be via the NCSC and with the agreement of the Chair of the NCSC.

7. Administration:

7.1 The Chair will liaise with the NCSC secretary regarding booking meeting rooms; circulation of agenda/briefing papers; payment of travel expenses.

8. Expenses:

8.1 The following will be funded by the NCSC: meeting venue; meeting refreshments; travel expenses;
8.2 The Chairperson will receive a small honorarium.

9. Review:

9.1 Outcomes of the Panel will be assessed using the work plan tool;
9.2 The NCSC will review the relevance and value of these terms of reference of the Panel at least every three years;
9.3 A formal evaluation of the Survivor Advisory Panel will be undertaken to deliver its results at the end of the 3 year pilot phase. The results of this evaluation will be used to determine the value of continuing with the Panel.

Approved by the NCSC June 2015