Surviving in Exile – Trauma to Recovery

Victim Support Service SA Symposium 31 May 2019

Victim Support Service SA Symposium will be held on May 31st 2019 at the National Wine Centre in Adelaide to gather representatives for the voices of victims. The purpose of Surviving in Exile is to share experiences, knowledge, ideas and best practice in Trauma to Recovery. Victim Support Service SA is the leading organisation addressing all aspects of trauma associated with crime and providing a trauma-informed response service. The Symposium aligns with forty years of Victim Support Service advocating for South Australians in providing integrated safety, counselling and justice support services to people impacted by crime and abuse in South Australia.

Find out more and Register  



Victim Support Service is a Redress Support Service provider.  We offer free and confidential trauma informed practical and therapeutic support to anyone considering applying to the National Redress Scheme.

The National Redress Scheme (Scheme) was created in response to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

The Royal Commission recommended that Redress be made as a way of assisting survivors in their personal journey of healing.


Victim Support Service can provide information about the National Redress Scheme and who can apply.

Victim Support Service is funded by the National Redress Scheme to provide the following support to Survivors of institutional child sexual abuse:

-        Free and confidential counselling

-        Information and support to navigate the Redress Scheme

-        Assistance filling out the application

-        Support with understanding your Redress outcome

We can also liaise with Knowmore (free legal support service) for free legal advice throughout this process.

To speak to one of our National Redress Scheme Support Workers please call 1800 842 846 or email

Welcome to Victim Support Service

Victim Support Service (VSS) provides free and confidential help to adult victims of crime, witnesses, their family, and friends across South Australia. We work in partnership with other organisations, we are not a government agency or part of the police and you don't have to report a crime to get our help. It doesn’t matter when the crime happened and you can call us any time after the crime, whether it was yesterday, last week or several years ago.

Annual Report 2017-18

The Victim Support Service Annual Report for 2017-18 is now available to view or download

Download the VSS Annual Report 2017-18 [pdf]

Trauma-informed care - Being Trauma-informed

by VSS staff member Darren Hincks

Being trauma-informed is to give consideration and understanding to the history of trauma and recognition of trauma responses in people’s lives. A trauma-informed approach prioritises the physical, psychological and emotional safety of clients and service providers while providing the opportunity for clients to rebuild control and empowerment.

Trauma-informed practice was first introduced to address the gap in trauma knowledge found in the mental health and substance addiction services in the United States (Harris & Fallot, 2001) where clients were often retraumatised during support.  The early practice focused on a framework of universal trauma screening , assessment and treatment, while minimising retraumatisation of clients. This approach required educating service providers on the biological, psychological and social effects of trauma.

For services operating under a trauma-informed philosophy, reframing victims as survivors is fundamental to the process of reconstituting and re-empowering individuals that have experienced trauma.

Read the full article here

SAMSN provide a support group for male survivors of child sexual abuse

For further information please visit the SAMSN website


Resource of the Week

Back to Life: Getting Past Your Past with Resilience, Strength, and Optimism / by Alicia Salzer. 2011.
[electronic Book] Login needed to access – contact to join the Resource Centre

Are you feeling emotionally 'trapped', and in need of a way out - to resilience and happiness? Psychiatrist Dr. Alicia Salzer offers you new ways to overcome victimisation and traumatic events, by looking forward instead of dwelling on the past. She suggests using ten 'stones' symbolising ten new ways of coping, to be there for you when you need them most. And she tells the stories of famous people who have survived and thrived.

Learn more about the VSS Resource Centre and join here 

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Port Lincoln (Lower Eyre), Whyalla (Upper Eyre), Port Augusta (Far North), Port Pirie (Yorke & Mid North), Berri (Riverland), Murray Bridge (Murraylands), Mount Gambier (Limestone Coast)