Palmerston North community gather for seminar on sexual violence video

Warwick Smith/Stuff

Advocate against sexual violence Louise Nicholas spares her story in Palmerston North as part of a seminar promoting understanding around victims of sexual violence.

Silence and emotion hung in the air as about 80 Manawatu people listened to stories of rape, childhood abuse, and the need to speak out.

Palmerston North's Convention Centre was packed with people on Monday for a seminar on sexual violence, hosted by Manline.

Advocates against sexual violence spoke of their experiences to people working within the health sector, to raise awareness and understanding of the issue and the barriers faced.

Advocate against sexual violence Louise Nicholas shares her story in Palmerston North as part of a seminar promoting ...
Warwick Smith

Advocate against sexual violence Louise Nicholas shares her story in Palmerston North as part of a seminar promoting understanding around victims of sexual violence.

Ken Clearwater, a rape victim and advocate against sexual violence, spoke of his own troubled journey.

READ MORE:
More claims of sexual violence in Manawatu
ACC help for sexual violence victims
At last, Louise Nicholas gets a guilty verdict - four of them

At just 12 years old, Clearwater was raped and sexually violated over a period of time by an 18-year-old boy.

Louise Nicholas, left, and Ken Clearwater in Palmerston North for a seminar on sexual violence.
Warwick Smith

Louise Nicholas, left, and Ken Clearwater in Palmerston North for a seminar on sexual violence.

The offender was sentenced  on two charges of indecent assault in 1965.

Clearwater told the audience how being abused fuelled his rage as a young man.

As a teenager Clearwater was expelled from his school in Christchurch after beating up a teacher and school prefect.

He was later arrested for assaulting a police officer. He lost his job at a meat works after hitting another employee in the face, following a confrontation.

Ad Feedback

"Violence kept going on in my head."

Clearwater said he finally understood he needed help following a verbal confrontation when playing a game of pool.

He said his childhood abuse took him into a "place of self-destruction".

"I went home and I got into bed and I started crying. I got into the foetal position and I cried and I thought there is something wrong with me."

In 1991 Clearwater did not know where to go or who to ask for help.

After being repeatedly turned down from services who told him they could not help him, he was eventually put in contact with a pyschologist.

Clearwater said it was vital for victims of sexual violence to have support.

He now works with other male victims through his role as the national manager for the Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Trust.

"What I would love is that one day our society understands the damage that sexual violation not only can do to women and girls, but to men and boys."

Clearwater told Stuff that the mental health system needed to support, understand and be trained in dealing with sexual violence cases.

Abuse and Rape Crisis Support Manawatu manager Ann Kent said the mental health system did not always have the resources available to best support sexual abuse survivors.

Advocate Louise Nicholas also shared her story with the audience.

Nicholas said she was raped by a policeman – who has permanent name suppression – in the small town of Murupara when she was 13.

She told Stuff the biggest barrier for a victim of sexual abuse was being believed.

Nicholas first disclosed her abuse to her teacher as a teenager.

"When she kept saying 'I want to help' and when I told her it was just like this massive, from the dark into the light moment."

Her teacher was "absolutely honest" and told Nicholas she would support her but needed extra help to do so.

Nicholas said it was OK for people to ask for help.

On a national level there was money going into the healthcare system to help sexual abuse victims, but Nicholas said it was like putting a "sticky plaster on".

"That's not the way. It's about government coming down to grass roots – talk to those that are actually doing [the] work and talk to our survivors."

Manawatu nurse Jackie Pacey said the "powerful" speeches showed her the gaps in the support available for sexual violence victims.

She said she hoped to use her newfound understanding to help her patients.

 - Stuff

Comments

Ad Feedback
special offers
Auckland

Targeted for voting National

Johannes Tietze's home was targeted by taggers after Saturday's election.

"Blood on your hands" read the words painted on house of National supporter while he celebrated election result.

Gang beneficiary runs $6m property video

Armed police officers stand outside the gang pad in Ellerslie.

Police say a 62-year-old Head Hunters gang member on a benefit controls $6m in property.

Pedestrian hit by car in Auckland

Emergency services are responding to a person hit by a car in east Auckland. (File)

The person was hit by a car near the Kohimarama Yacht Club on Monday evening.

Crown to appeal Pora decision

Teina Pora was awarded the $2.5 million compensation package in June.

Teina Pora "bitterly disappointed" as Crown fights decision to put inflation on his compensation.

Wellington

Turfed out by Welly's wind video

Karori artificial turf blown away.

Contractors laid artificial turf in Karori - but understimated capital's infamous breezes.

Cinema's final curtain

The Paramount Theatre - built in 1917 - in 1923.

Last screening on Monday night at Wellington's 100-year-old Paramount cinema.

Loose cladding on city building video

Firefighters work to remove cladding blown loose from the top floor of the Spark building on Boulcott St, Wellington.

Traffic blocked as fire fighters secure roof being dislodged by strong winds.

From ridicule to Riversdale

Spectators watching a surf carnival at Riversdale in the early 1960s.

One man's dream led to a holiday spot now enjoyed by generations.

Canterbury

Sex worker bylaw faces axe

Police no longer support a bylaw preventing prostitutes working in residential areas. Christchurch City Council staff ...

Residents enraged as council and police back away from banning prostitutes from working outside their homes.

River death 'tragic'

Helen Wood died at Kairaki Beach, in North Canterbury, on Friday night. The beach is popular with fishers and ...

Helen Wood reversed her trailer onto the beach. Somehow, her car then went into the river with her inside.

'Mistaken identity' murder

The body of Marcus Luke Tucker, 36, was found bound and wrapped in carpet near Lake Ellesmere on Anzac Day 2016.

Marcus Luke Tucker's nickname was "Ruckus" - one he unluckily shared with a thief.

National's 'dead cat' masterstroke

National finance spokesman Steven Joyce made a calculated play against Labour with his bogus claim of an $11.7b hole in ...

Analysis: Its $11.7b play against Labour was deeply cynical, but may just win it the election.

Waikato

Preparing for peak kitten

Waikato SPCA expects to help at least 3000 animals this calendar year, many of them kittens.

Breeding season is getting longer and this year is expected to be the busiest yet.

Search for fisherman

Police and the coastguard looking for a missing fisherman at Papanui Point at Ruapuke.

Emergency services are searching for person who fell into the water at Ruapuke, near Raglan.

Powered parachute crashes

The powered parachute crashed on takeoff.

Man in powered parachute crashed on take-off, hitting a metal bollard.

Man struck by tree dies

The man was out chainsawing trees when one fell and struck him. He died at the scene.

Man chainsawing on a rural Coromandel property has died after a tree fell on him.

Taranaki

New lattes: Novelty or nutritional?

Turmeric and beetroot lattes are becoming popular but won't be replacing anyone's flat white or cappuccino any time soon.

Turmeric and beetroot lattes are trendy and tasty but aren't a miracle health cure.

'Undesirable' gully

Martin Moeller goes through Lucy Gully a few times a week and is disappointed that it has become a dumping ground.

A scenic redwood forest in Egmont National Park is becoming a dumping ground, a neighbour says.

'I want my pig back'

The wild pig that had been wandering around New Plymouth has been caught and will be taken to live on a farm.

A suburban sow gone wild has been caught, but her owner will huff and puff for the return of the piggy, pig, pig.

Taranaki lifesavers scoop awards

250917 News Photo. SIMON O'CONNOR/STUFF
Todd Velvin won the DHL Instructor of the year award at the Surf Life Saving awards.

Todd Velvin, DHL Instructor of the Year, says surf lifesaving is "pretty hard" to give up.

Manawatu

Loud jets irk residents video

Sanson resident Bill Tooley points to where fighter jets have been flying over his home.

Could howling pets and shaking houses become the new norm in Sanson?

Gorge options given

The 13 alternative route options are available for public viewing and comment on the NZTA website.

Thirteen alternative routes to the Manawatū Gorge have been laid out for the public to discuss.

Immigration fraud

Mohammad Khan was under pressure from family when committing immigration fraud, the Palmerston North District Court heard.

His mother was denied entry to New Zealand eight times, so he lied to authorities to get her in.

They want it back

Bethany's restaurant in The Square, Palmerston North.

The Leung Wais lost Bethany's restaurant, named after their daughter, to voluntary liquidation.

Nelson

Revved up over hobby

04092017 NEWS PHOTO BRADEN FASTIER / STUFF
Preston Brunell of Stoke Mechanical and Tyres.

Nelson man Preston Brunell has got plenty of mileage from his lifelong love of custom cars.

New marine frontiers

Dr Serean Adams, Cawthron aquaculture group manager at the Cawthron Aquaculture Park.

New species and technologies will increase resilience of aquaculture stock for the future, industry told.

Life-changing loss

15092017 NEWS PHOTO BRADEN FASTIER / NELSON MAIL
Margaret Lacy holds a picture of her late husband Peter Lacy who had ...

Dementia affects tens of thousands of Kiwis, eventually taking everything from them.

Wet spring for region

It's been a wet September in the Nelson/Tasman region, with higher than average rainfall.

Spring starts out on the wrong foot in Nelson but it's not all bad news.

Marlborough

Love is wild

Rebecca Stoner, a florist at Forget Me Not, left, and Jessica Bunting, designer at Betty and Co, work on one of their al ...

It can be pretty wild trying to organise a wedding, especially these days.

Looking to the future

National's Stuart Smith, centre, celebrates with his family, from left, Hugo Smith, Fenella Smith, Julie Smith and Louis ...

As results are revealed, what's next for the winners and losers?

Librarian appeals apology order

Former Rai Valley Area School librarian Faye Leov in 2010 after receiving an apology from the school board for her ...

A former school librarian behind a defamatory letter claiming her former boss was a bully is to appeal a judge's decision to make her apologise.

Care switch 'upsetting'

Pamela Duffy has built up a close relationship with her carers, who will no longer be visiting her at home after the ...

For the past two years, she has built up a relationship with her carers. Next week, she may never see them again.

South Canterbury

Craigmore a designer's 'dream' video

Olympian Jock Paget is being hosted at Craigmore Station for the first fundraising event for a proposed new eventing course.

Olympian throws support behind proposed world class eventing course at Craigmore Station.

Fine weather back

A severe weather warning was in place for heavy winds in Canterbury on Monday morning.

The majority of South Canterbury is expected to have fine weather on Tuesday.

Call for model plane size limits

South Canterbury Model Aero Club vice-president Robbie Hellewell launches his Parkzone Visionair AS3X aircraft into the ...

Safety concerns prompt SC Aero Club to call for more rules around model aeroplanes.

Mechanics recall bygone era

Former workmates, from left, Bernie Foster, Allan Averis and Gordon Hutcheon check out some of the old tractor models ...

Three former Timaru colleagues take a trip down memory lane.

Otago

Fire victim's family 'gutted'

A Housing New Zealand house where the body of a man was found after a fire.

Heartbroken family speaks of their devastation in losing their father in a house fire.

False alarms go off due to thunder

A thunder and lightning storm hit Queenstown and Central Otago on Monday morning.

Lightning and thunder storm cuts keep fire brigade volunteers busy in Queenstown.

Family 'wrecked' as search suspended

Police are still appealing for sightings of missing Dunedin man Stephen Lowe.

The search for missing man Stephen Lowe has been suspended.

Two MPs for Clutha-Southland

Clutha-Southland New Zealand First candidate Mark Patterson watches his leader Winston Peters, give his coalition speech ...

Clutha-Southland has a new New Zealand First MP, Lawrence farmer Mark Patterson.

Southland

Farmer losing land to flooding river

Te Waewae Bay farmer Thomas O'Brien is facing the loss of about 22 hectares of his family farm as water from the Waiau ...

Thomas O'Brien faces loss of 22 hectares of his family farm as water from the local river continues to flood his property.

Family 'wrecked' as search suspended

Police are still appealing for sightings of missing Dunedin man Stephen Lowe.

The search for missing man Stephen Lowe has been suspended.

And then there were four

Mark Patterson: secure at 7th.

Southland will have four MPs. How much influence is that?

South's election night

It was all smiles for Invercargill MP Sarah Dowie, pictured here with her husband Mark Billcliff.

Invercargill will have two MPs in Parliament, Labour's Liz Craig and National's Sarah Dowie.

Ad Feedback