Toolbox 2: How can I help someone experiencing family and sexual violence?


Supporting someone who is experiencing family and sexual violence can be frightening, stressful and sometimes frustrating.

If you want to talk to someone about family and sexual violence:

  • Wait until they are alone and it is safe to speak.

  • Let them know that you are worried about them.

  • Ask if they are okay. If appropriate, ask if their children are okay.

  • Do not push them to talk, say you are here if they want to talk.

  • Do not try to offer counselling.

  • Recommend they contact one of the key support services (see below).

If someone tells you about a problem with family and sexual violence your response is very important and can make a real difference.
If the person feels supported by the people around them, they are more likely to seek help. Remember to:

  • Tell them you believe them.

  • Let them know that it is not their fault.

  • Avoid offering counselling. Do not give your own solutions, but recommend they contact one of the key support services
    (see below).

Understand that the decision to access help is theirs and your role is to support them in this process.

Look after yourself first

Helping someone else respond to family and sexual violence can be very stressful. Be sure to look after yourself and talk to someone if you need support or advice.

Act Now

You can talk to a counsellor on the 1-Tok Kaunselin Helpim Lain 7150 8000 or call the Bel isi PNG Case Management Centre (Operated by Femili PNG) by phoning 7055 4401.