As part of the Church of England, we recognise that the Church has sometimes failed to keep people safe in the way that everyone deserves and the Gospel requires. In our Diocese we are passionate about learning from past failures to make the necessary changes, so that we do everything we possibly can to keep people safe and respond well when things go wrong.
We urge and welcome anyone to give information or make a disclosure regarding church-related abuse. However, people with a lived-experience of abuse within the church may choose to seek help and support from agencies that are independent to our Diocese.
Read the ‘Responding well to victims and survivors of abuse‘ leaflet from the Church of England. This guide is designed for victims and survivors of church-based abuse, but we recognise that abuse can take place in any setting.
Survivor support strategy
To help us focus intentionally on responding well to the needs of survivors, we have now developed a Survivor Support Strategy.
On the launch of the strategy, Bishop Pete Wilcox said: “The Church of England has made great strides in Safeguarding over the course of the past 30 years, and the Diocese of Sheffield has been part of that. Unfortunately, it is only very recently that the wider Church of England, and sadly our own Diocese also, has begun to prioritse the needs of survivors. I regret it has taken so long for us to produce a strategy like this, but there is no turning back and my earnest hope and prayer is that this document will hasten the culture change needed to enable us to get right our present and future engagement with survivors.”
Below you will find contact details of agencies that are available to assist either on a 24-hour basis or through specialist helplines and services:
A free and independent service supporting survivors of church-related abuse delivered by the service providers, First Light.
Monday to Friday 9am – 9pm
Saturday 9am – 1pm
Sunday 1 – 5pm
A member of the Safe Spaces team will make contact within 48 hours of making a contact request or referral. Find out more
Church of England Interim Support Scheme
Offering immediate help and support to survivors whose life circumstances are significantly affected by the abuse suffered, and the response to it. Find out more
Supports women and men who have been sexually abused, as children or adults, by ministers, clergy or others under the guise of the Church. Find out more
A survivor-led organisation that runs peer support groups for victim-survivors of all kinds of abuse, including faith-based abuse. It has a newsletter and other special events for survivors of abuse experienced in churches and other faith-based communities. Find out more