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MSD: Sexual Harm Service Development Update

February 01, 2018 at 2:39 PM

*From MSD*

Ministry of Social Development

30 January 2018

Sexual Harm Service Development Update

Happy New Year!

In this update you’ll find information about the:

  • Safe to talk helpline to start in Canterbury
  • Reminder of ROI to close gaps in crisis services
  • Providers to be contacted for feedback on guidelines
  • Kaupapa Māori HSB pilot ready to start
  • Update on the evaluation of sexual harm services

Safe to talk helpline to start in Canterbury

The new sexual harm helpline, which will provide 24/7 access to free confidential information and support to those affected by sexual harm, will go live on 19 February in the Canterbury region.

This will provide an opportunity to test the new helpline and work with providers and users of sexual harm support services to strengthen the referral pathways before Safe to talk goes live nationally in April.

Homecare Medical, who will operate the helpline, ran a referral workshop in Christchurch in December with the providers of sexual harm support services to work out the best way people could be referred to local services.

Three more workshops will be held in Auckland, Hamilton and Wellington between February and April. Further information about these will be available soon.

The Safe to talk website is in the final stage of development with content being reviewed and user testing being carried out to ensure people are comfortable with how it looks and feels.

Homecare Medical has extended an open invitation to providers to visit their Auckland, Wellington or Christchurch centres to understand how the organisation carries out its role across a number of sectors.

If you have any questions or would like to meet with helpline staff or visit Homecare, please contact:

Find out more about the helpline on the MSD website.

Reminder of ROI to close gaps in crisis services

The opportunity to register interest in filling the gaps in sexual harm crisis support services in the Midlands and Southern regions closes at 5pm on 2 February 2018.

Twelve areas (six in the Midlands region and six in the Southern region) still have gaps in their crisis support services following an earlier tender process.

To address these gaps, we are running a Registration of Interest (ROI) process to identify suitable providers to deliver these services. This approach will enable us to engage directly with providers to explore approaches to increase capability, for example, through collaborative arrangements between providers.

A briefing session was held on 19 January to enable providers to find out more about the opportunity. Some excellent questions were raised and it was great to have providers come together to look at ways to provide services in these locations.

Find out more about the ROI and read the questions and answers

Once the tender period has closed, the proposals will be evaluated. We will keep you updated.

If you have any further questions, please email us at

Providers to be contacted for feedback on guidelines

When we introduced new Service Guidelines for sexual harm crisis support services in July last year we made a commitment to review the guidelines regularly.

As the guidelines have now been in place for six months, we will be contacting providers of sexual harm crisis support services contracted by the Ministry, for feedback on the guidelines. We will be asking providers to tell us what’s working well, what’s not so good, and what could change.

Further information on how providers can give feedback will be available in the next few weeks.

Kaupapa Māori HSB pilot ready to start

A kaupapa Māori service pilot aimed at addressing harmful sexual behaviour (HSB) for non-mandated adults (adults not in the criminal justice system) starts on 1 February in Te Atatu, Auckland.

The Ministry and the provider, Korowai Tumanako, have been co-developing the pilot which will deliver HSB services within a kaupapa Māori framework.

Korowai Tumanko will work holistically with Māori men who have engaged in harmful sexual behaviour and their whānau support network. The aim is to prevent sexual harm, increase safety, and restore and enhance the mana of whānau and communities.

The pilot programme is funded through to 30 June 2019.

Sapere Research Group has been contracted to undertake an evaluation of the pilot.

Update on the evaluation of sexual harm services

The evaluation of specialist sexual harm services is now moving from the planning to the assessment (formative evaluation) phase.

Malatest International has been contracted by the Ministry to develop evaluation plans for crisis support services, the national sexual harm helpline, harmful sexual behaviour services and services for male survivors of abuse.

An advisory group has been formed with Te Ohaakii a Hine – National Network Ending Sexual Violence Together (TOAH-NNEST) and the evaluators have talked with a number of providers over the last couple of months about their services and the proposed approach.

Malatest will now be contacting all the providers of Ministry-funded specialist sexual harm services to talk about their organisation and the work they do. This will inform the development of the evaluation plans, performance monitoring tools and quarterly reporting dashboards.

You can find more information about Malatest – including their contact details – on their website.

If you have any queries, please contact us at


Ministry of Social Development

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