survivors manchester

Our Team

Back

Here at Survivors Manchester, we provide a variety of online, offline, 1:1 and group support services direct to self identifying male survivors, along with their friends and their families, often referred to as ‘loved ones’.

As an organisation we also provide workshops and input into training courses to health and social care professionals, Police and legal professionals, public authorities and private sector, faith leaders and communities, teachers and students, and the voluntary sector.

Every single member of our amazing team are 100% committed to supporting those directly and indirectly affected by the sexual violation of boys and men, with some of the team having lived experience themselves.

We work in a non-oppressive, trauma informed and male focused manner and do not support any form of discrimination, whether on the grounds of gender, age, race, disability, religion, sexual orientation, HIV status, parental status, socio-economic class, or criminal history. All of our team understand the need for individuals to be able to generate their own identity and we are positive about all male and non-binary identities.

Our Team Structure

In order to ensure that everyone knows how they fit into the organisation, we developed a simple reporting structure that shows us who is responsible for formally managing and supporting whom. We call this our organigram and its reviewed bi-monthly to ensure that its fit for purpose, particularly as we grow and develop further.

Meet YOUR Team

It is said that people make an organisation and here at Survivors Manchester we believe this is true. Our strong, dedicated, highly experienced and qualified staff team are so supportive of the work they carry out and of each other that it truly reflects on the delivery of our services. Each member of the team fits neatly into what we call our ‘Organisational Governance Structure’ which gives the organisation structure and an understanding of accountability and responsibility.

Click on the name of any of our team to see what they have to say:

Alex Howard Jones

Snr Trauma Informed
Therapist

Senior Trauma Informed Therapist

As a proud Mancunian, Qualified Psychotherapist and Registered Member of the BACP; Alex joined the Survivors Manchester Family in November 2020 and keeping in fashion with so many of our team, he brought diverse background with him having worked as a civil servant, community worker and wines and spirits specialist. Initially, Alex’s path began in studying Music until he eventually realised that this wasn’t going to be the route he wanted his career to go down, though he still holds a passion for writing, creating and performing.

He would go on to study a dual honours degree in Counselling and Social policy where he not only came out with an appetite to further his career in therapy but had also met his future wife. In order to fund his post-graduate study, Alex worked in the wine and spirits industry for 5 years where he built up in-depth knowledge and appreciation for all things alcoholic. He went on to qualify from his PGDip in Counselling and Psychotherapy in 2015 after which Alex would then work in the Voluntary, Charity and Social Enterprise sector for a number of years working as a Therapist and service lead where he held clinical and operational responsibility of a number of Therapeutic Services. He states that he is incredibly proud to reach a point in his career where he is working for an organisation known for its outstanding work and clinical excellence.

Outside of work Alex is still a keen musician, an amateur wood-worker and obsessive Manchester United fan.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

It’s a bit of a cliché but was an opportunity I just couldn’t let pass by. When you work in Mental health in Greater Manchester, you hear about Survivors Manchester and the brilliance of the work they do – they’re so often seen as the gold standard. I wanted to work with that magical team whose work is unequivocally amazing. It’s close to my heart too; my late-uncle was a survivor and someone who I wish had the opportunity to engage with this service because I think he would have been able to benefit like the so many of the lads who work with us. Duncan has created something which is innovative and uncompromising in its care for men who’ve been subject to rape, sexual abuse or assault and it’s just unparalleled.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

I’d love to see the continued growth of the organisation into the ten boroughs of Greater Manchester, to a point where we’re more visible and able to help more men access our services locally and break their silence. I’d also like to see us potentially working with Children and Young people in order to help them resolve their adverse experiences at an earlier age.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

Someone wise recently said to me “don’t keep your gob shut and reach out if you need anything”, there was something incredibly poignant about that for me. I’d like to offer that back to Greater Manchester; You don’t need to keep quiet, you don’t need to feel alone; reach out and change your story.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

Where to begin! The history of this city is innovative, unique and hard-working and that’s bled into the diverse and rich culture of the city and its people which is just completely unlike anywhere else in the world. We split the atom here and this is where Tony Wilson brought us an organic sound. As the quote goes: “What Manchester does today, the rest of the world does tomorrow”.

Clinical Lead & Therapist
OUT Spoken

OUT Spoken: Clinical Lead

After working for many years in safeguarding and pastoral management of specialist and complex needs schools across South Manchester Alison decided to retrain to become a Psychotherapist.

After completing her Post Graduate Diploma in Counselling and Psychotherapy at the University of Salford in 2016, Alison knew she wanted to work within the criminal justice system post qualification and counseled in two greater Manchester male HMP Prison estates for over five years.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

Early on in my training, I came across one of Survivors Manchester booklets with stories, poems, and writings from Survivors. I gave this to my very first client to support their journey and it changed their whole outlook and helped them move on with their story knowing they were not alone!

Who wouldn’t want to work with an organization that has the power to move, support, and makes people feel they belong in their own skin?

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

Break down the barriers within the prison system regarding trauma and the profound effects and legacy it has on people and breaking the stigma of talking about men and women’s mental health and their needs within the wider prison estates.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

Start talking and make talking about your mental health to each other a norm.  Understanding where you have come from can enable you to decide where you going and break those taboos and stigmas.

Breaking the silence is what Survivors is all about, there is no judgment only guidance and support

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

The diversity and culture of the city, the proximity of countryside to conurbation, and the general community support pulling together in a crisis.

allison lobley

Trauma Informed Therapist

Trauma Informed Therapist

Allison joined us in 2018 as a Trauma Informed Therapist, having completed her Post Graduate Diploma in Counselling & Psychotherapy at Salford University in 2016.

This marked a complete change of direction for her having spent almost 30 years working in local government across the Greater Manchester area in various managerial roles. So she decided to put some of those skills and experience into practice in the voluntary sector and ended up managing Trafford Rape Crisis whilst she trained to be a Counsellor.

It was during this time that she met Duncan, as they often found themselves at long meetings trying to raise the profile of services providing much-needed support to men and women who have experienced any kind of sexual violence. Representing the voices of all of those people who needed to be heard.

And now she spends her working time bearing witness to the voices of some of those people as she helps them survive, heal and thrive through her role at Survivors Manchester. She says this is the best job she has ever had!

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

I already knew Duncan and had decided to wait for the right role to come along in an organisation that I really believed in. Fortunately, I didn’t have to wait too long!

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

Continue to reach out and provide much needed support to all the men who need it in increasingly challenging times.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

We are here, and will always be here when you need us.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

It’s home and it’s where I belong.

Trauma Informed Therapist
Outspoken

Trauma Informed Therapist

Originally from Rochdale, Greater Manchester, Chloe states that something in her has always wanted to help and support people. After starting a degree in creative writing and journalism she soon realised it wasn’t for her. She then decided to take up a career in retail management but after a number of years, she realised how much she cared about the wellbeing of her colleagues than about the sales and performance of the shop. So, Chloe started a level 2 in counselling skills at her local collage and absolutely fell in love with it. She continued her studies and completed a level 3 and ultimately a BA(Hons) in Counselling and Psychotherapy.

Along the way, Chloe bought a black Labrador puppy who she named Frankie (yes after Frank Sinatra!) and decided to pursue her dream of working with animals alongside her perfect job and trained in animal-assisted therapy. Frankie also trained and is the greatest companion! From this, she has built up her own community-interest company and works with her own dogs, using animal-assisted intervention, with men in prison and in a Recovery Centre for addiction.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

It was through my work with the dogs in HMP Buckley Hall that I met Duncan and learnt about Survivors Manchester. Duncan is infectious and I admired him for building a safe space for men and boys to seek the security and help they rightly deserve. I feel that “society” shames men for seeking help and together with Survivors Manchester, I want to Break the Silence and stop this toxic masculinity!

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

What Survivors do already is fantastic. I would just love to for us to continue doing what we do best and growing as we can. I would personally love if I could share my love of animals with the service too! Maybe get a fish for the saferoom!

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

Just know you are not alone. And we are here to help and support you in whatever way we can. You deserve the life you want. Bad experiences do not define who we are, we can grow from them, together.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

The people- first and foremost! Also the buildings, the culture, the theatres and obviously Manchester United (my dad wouldn’t be happy if I didn’t include them!)

chris speed

Operations Director

Operations Lead

Raised in Blackley in the 1980s, Chris was never really sure what he wanted to do for a career but then found himself spending 12 years in the catering industry, working in the city centre of Manchester, where he gained his management and organisation skills.

Chris states that he will always have a passion for food but felt like it was his time to move on and to start something new.

He began volunteering in the third sector with Survivors Manchester and there found a passion which he wanted to build on his experience and use his existing skills to help the service. Chris then joined the Victim Support administration team and helped with a number of big projects, including the merging of two sites into one.

Chris is happy to be back with Survivors Manchester and having made this choice, he says he looks forward to his future and hopes to be a productive member of the team (we can guarantee he is!)

Family (proud dad) and friends are the greatest part of his personal life and also has a love of football, reading, movies, music, and art.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

Having volunteered in the past I always wanted to come back to Survivors Manchester to take on a role full time. After seeing what the team did on a daily basis was inspiring and I knew I wanted to be a part of the organisation. The work ethic and professional attitude of the team and how they related to people using the service was always a big part of my decision to come back.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

Give people the best service and the power back to move forward from their abusive experiences and raise awareness that we are here to help more people who have been silent for too long.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

I’d like residents to support to reducing the stigma associated with male sexual abuse and rape, this does happen to men and they need support whether from historic or current abuse. We all need to show respect and give support to the people of Manchester and stop any children or adults from going through this.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

Born and raised here all my family and friends are here, a great mix of people and for me it’s a city on the rise with a bright future.

Daniel-Griffin

Independent Sexual Violence
Advisor (ISVA)

Independent Sexual Violence Advisor (ISVA)

Born and raised in South Manchester, Daniel comes from a thirteen year career as a Hairdresser/ Barber, gaining numerous of Qualifications along the way. Within his career Daniel has experience of working within Pub Management and being a Male Nanny ‘Manny’. Daniel has lived not only in Manchester but Windsor, Mallorca and Gran Canaria. Daniel is now based back in his home town to start the new journey of his career…

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

As a survivor of Rape, I was a service user with Survivors Manchester, engaging in The Safe Room and the Drop In services for over 16 months. I grew as a person and became proud to break my silence and share my personal story as well my own journey because of how Survivors Manchester supports and cares for you as an individual not just a number.

Having that feeling of a Full Circle moment.

As my new role is starting as an Independent Sexual Violence Advisor I cannot wait to support and guide our clients who are ready to break their silence, break down the myths, misconceptions of what it is to be a survivor. I now have that platform to showcase my personal growth.

I have always had a passion and interested in Crime and Justice and when I saw that Survivors Manchester were looking to expand their ISVA team, I knew I had to apply! And join an incredible team who are breaking down the barriers of gender misconception, this is something I want to be apart off. Changing for the better….

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

Continuing our Support Services we offer to Survivors. And also expanding our services.
Engaging more with local organisations by delivering factual awareness about Sexual Abuse, Sexual Exploitation and Rape. Allowing an individual to recognise the signs, who then may feel comfortable to break their silence.
Also one day I personally would like to use my skill set as Barber, to help out those who struggle with public surroundings or are finically restricted because ‘beautiful hair is a habit not a gift’.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

I do!
I personally thought I would be defined by my rape. That was because I was unware of how I can be a proud and confident person (after numerous of breakdowns and therapy) I can proudly say I am defining it by becoming an ISVA.
Never let anything define you, you are the owner of your own destiny and journey.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

As a social butterfly, the NIGHTLIFE! However it is the culture, the history Manchester has on offer.
I also love how Mancunians interact, we inform you all about our day, dramas and family from just a ‘Hello, You alright?’ and that’s just in the supermarket when packing your shopping! Strangers, not in Manchester because we are a proud community and that’s our bond!

duncan craig

Chief Executive Officer /
Trauma Informed Therapist

CEO & Trauma Focused Therapist

Duncan spent the first 10 years of his working life in the theatre, arts and entertainment. Beginning at Granada Studios Tour, to the Palace Theatre and Opera House, then People’s History Museum to travelling across the UK as Director of PR and Marketing touring the UK with some of the best shows to come out of the West End and Broadway.

In 2005, Duncan began his training to become a qualified counsellor and decided to have a complete career change after volunteering in a busy City Centre needle exchange. He spent the next few years working within a voluntary sector drug service both in harm reduction and treatment services, specialising in working with male and female sex workers, people affected by HIV and Hepatitis C, and in sexual health.

Duncan qualified from the University of Manchester as an Integrative Counsellor in 2008, having completed his clinical practice in both a voluntary and NHS setting. Always looking for ways to develop his professional practice, Duncan has completed a MA in Counselling, graduating 2010 with Distinction, and plans on developing his work further to undertake his PhD.

It was during his initial training as a therapist that Duncan began to uncover, raise his awareness and finally disclose the sexual abuse and rape he experienced in his childhood and in his later teens. Unable to find the support he needed was the catalyst to designing a service for males in Greater Manchester.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

When I was looking for support in Manchester and realised that there was none for male survivors of historic abuse, I knew I had to do something and make sure that whatever was created had to be ethical, professional and more than fit for purpose. I now want Survivors Manchester to be able to offer a first class service to adult male survivors of sexual abuse and rape, regardless of when the event happened.

I would like to see Survivors Manchester work with other services in the community to get the message out there that men are suffering in silence and it doesn’t need to be that way!

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

Please open your eyes and begin to see that men can be victims too!

Sexual abuse affects us all, regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, economic status, disability. We need to work together to give support to those affected, in order for them to move forward and make positive life choices.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

The people! Manchester is so diverse and communities really do come together, especially in times of need. We have so many first’s here! To pick one… it would have to be the vast array of arts venues on offer, from the Palace Theatre to Royal Exchange, Odeon to Cornerhouse.

Professional Membership

Duncan is an accredited member of the BACP and adheres to the Ethical Framework for Good Practice in Counselling and Psychotherapy. He is also a member of the EMDR Association UK and Ireland.

Independent Sexual Violence
Advisor (ISVA)

Independent Sexual Violence Advisor

Born and raised in Stockport and Manchester in the 1980’s, Duncan has had a varied career in retail, the pub and club trade and warehousing. In between he studied Archaeology and English, living in Cornwall and Derby but eventually drawn back to the North. As time went by he felt more and more drawn to working directly with and helping people. He worked for Victim Support for 6 years helping vulnerable victims of crime before completing his ISVA training.

In his personal life, he enjoys reading, history, films, getting outdoors, travel and cooking (and any combination of these) – as well as dabbling in writing and craft projects.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

Working with vulnerable victims of crime made it clear to me that there were real gaps missing in regards to services for males. I had seen and read about the wonderful work that Survivors Manchester do and I wanted to be a real part of that team.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

I’d love us to continue to provide a fantastic service but also to in time expand on this so we can reach out to even more people.  In turn and by doing so, lead by example so other services across the UK and even worldwide can see how vital and powerful this type of service can be!

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

I want people in Greater Manchester to be aware that men can be supported to thrive even after surviving sexual violence and for us to be able to have a conversation together about how we tackle what’s happened and what is still happening. This is our responsibility to make sure that our loved ones and vulnerable are getting the support that they need. Even if you are just raising awareness you are part of that healing process! Please don’t underestimate the power of one to make changes and be the change they want to see in the world; but when like-minded people come together it can be incredible.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

The general attitude in our art, music, food and most importantly the people. We are innovative, creative and positive. I love the Manchester spirit!

Admin Assistant

Everton Kluczkovski

Operations Data Analyst

Operations Assistant

Everton is from Brazil and has recently arrived in Manchester. His wife has got a job opportunity at the University of Manchester and they have lived here since May 2019. He spent the majority of his life working with IT and enjoying family and friends. In order to experience living abroad as well as improve his English, he stayed for a while in Canada. It was there that he saw his first child comes to the world, experience that has changed him as a human being.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

There were many reasons for applying to work at Survivors Manchester, but the main reason was the opportunity to develop my social work working, helping, and supporting individuals and communities that are in need.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

I would like to seek Survivors Manchester reaching, helping, and supporting more young people.

Do you have a message for Great Manchester residents?

You will never walk alone!!! You will always find support at Survivors Manchester. We will be always there for you.

What is your favourite thing about Manchester

I love the city’s architecture, in each corner we can see history and culture. That is fascinating.

gayna williams

Independent Sexual Violence
Advisor (ISVA) Lead

Independent Sexual Violence Advisor Lead

Born and raised in North Manchester, in one way or another, Gayna’s work has always involved supporting individuals with a range of vulnerabilities and complex needs.

Experienced in various roles and settings within Social Care, including Residential & Community Mental health, Homeless Residential Support, Substance Recovery and Engagement and Community Detox.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

I first met Duncan about 10 years ago when I was a volunteer on the needle exchange at Lifeline. Duncan was my mentor initially and later my line manager when I successfully applied for a paid position as a community detox worker.

While working with Duncan I learned about his vision for Survivors Manchester and gained knowledge about male sexual violence, exploitation and the lasting impact on male Survivors. A number of the male clients we worked with had suffered child sexual abuse, so having Duncan as my Team Leader was valuable in helping me understand the legacy issues and trauma those clients may be dealing with.
About two years after leaving Lifeline, I was offered my first position with Survivors Manchester as Outreach & Engagement Worker on the ‘Safer Streets Manchester’ Child Sexual Exploitation project. Then in January 2017 a role was created with a need to expand the ISVA service and I was offered the opportunity to complete my ISVA training.

I already loved working for Survivors Manchester and this was another exiting, challenging opportunity for me stay with the organisation, grow, learn new skills, and continue to make a positive difference.

The men we support are a true inspiration. The strength and determination these men have is incredible. The feedback we receive from our clients is evidence that the work we do is valuable.

Not everybody gets to work for an organisation that they can honestly say they are really very proud to be a part of.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

Make Survivors Manchester more visible and to reach the men who don’t know we’re here.

Sadly, our prisons are full of men who are there due to the direct impact and legacy issues of suffering sexual abuse as children and/or in adulthood. There’s also a population of men that have suffered sexual violence whilst in prison – and although we already do some brilliant work offering therapy to these men, I would like to see the ISVA service expand to meet their needs.

There are so many barriers for men when it comes to reporting, being in prison shouldn’t be one of them!

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

I have two messages.

After learning about the issues related to male sexual abuse and rape and the lack of resources and support, I found myself opening up discussions at home with my family and friends. I wasn’t surprised that the issue was not an easy thing to talk about for some people. So, my message is… Taboo subjects will remain taboo if we don’t discuss them. The silence can’t be broken if we do not talk.

If you’ve suffered sexual violence, telling anyone may feel impossible, so considering reporting to the police can be very frightening.

There is no right or wrong, no should or shouldn’t, when it comes to reporting to the police. The choice is yours.
Myself and Trevor can give you all the information you need to make an informed decision. No pressure or judgment – we will support you whether you decide to report or not.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

It’s got to be my sense of belonging, walking down the street and feeling right at home…the community spirit, the energy and realness of Manchester and its people.

jamie legge

Operations Manager

Snr Operations Assistant

Jamie has a keen interest in sports, which led him to undertake a degree in Sports Development and Management at Edge Hill University. It was whilst at university that he learnt about the incredible work that Survivors Manchester are doing, when our CEO, Duncan Craig, did a guest lecture on supporting and working with male survivors of abuse. This inspired Jamie to research and examine the stories of several elite athletes who have been sexually abused for his dissertation. Whilst writing his dissertation he was provided with a desk in the Survivors Manchester office, which he says provided him with an understanding of the essential work the organisation does and gave him that extra motivation to complete his work.

Being at the start of his career and having recently completed an MSc in Sports, Physical Activity and Mental Health, he hopes to continue being a productive member of the team, learning more about the impacts unwanted sexual violence can have on male survivors and to help continue making a difference.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

Having been provided with the amazing opportunity to have a space within the Survivors Manchester office to complete my university work, I was able to see what incredible work the team are doing. So, when I was offered to opportunity to come in and be a part of the organisation, it filled me with pride and something I was excited to do.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

To continue giving people the opportunity to access such an amazing organisation that offers such a variety of quality support services. Without Survivors Manchester being here, it would be so much more difficult for male survivors to make that first step in healing and moving forward.

Additionally, I would like to see Survivors Manchester team up with sports governing bodies, organisations and clubs to develop campaigns aimed at educating the sports community about sexual exploitation within sport.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

That men can be victims of sexual abuse and rape too. We need to work together to support those that have been affected and help them move forward by reducing the stigma that is associated with the sexual abuse and rape of men. Let’s come together, shout loud and help raise as much awareness as possible about the impact and presence of sexual abuse and rape.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

As a massive music fan, I would have to say that. Manchester has seen and is still seeing some incredible musical talents and artists come out of the city, and I have lost count as to how many amazing gigs I have been to. The city also holds some of the most amazing music venues – Manchester Apollo being one of my favourite.

I’d also have to say the football. Coming from Oldham and being an Oldham Athletic fan – there is nothing like the atmosphere at Boundary Park on a Saturday afternoon.

Jeff Pond

Group & Community
Development Worker

Group and Community Development Officer

Born and raised in Cheshire in the early nineties, Jeff fad a love for music, art and footy. He had various jobs growing up from working in a bacon factory and working for warehouses and removal companies.

It was when he was in his twenties he decided to train as croupier here in Chinatown Manchester.

After 10 years working and living in Manchester in the casinos and also for Royal Caribbean cruise line he decided to change career. Volunteering for NSPCC Childline Manchester was his first step, then volunteering for a community sports project within a drug and alcohol service.

Later he worked for Change Grow Live as a young person’s substance misuse worker and then later he was one of the first Social Prescribers in Manchester working for the BeWell service at the big life group.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

As a survivor of CSA I found it a very lonely road and one that not many understood. As 13/14 year old, I found myself at the local library in Cheshire to access Self-help books about sexual abuse and it’s impact. There was not much help/support in the early nineties for male survivors.

Luckily I accessed support from Survivors Manchester in 2017 after watching the ex-football players speak out on national TV. I thought how brave of these men to speak about something most people want to close their ears to or shut out.

After accessing survivors Manchester I received 10 one to one sessions of pretrial therapy(or healing steps) and was appointed an ISVA (Gayna). Now my work colleague, who would support me through the police process and during the trial at Liverpool crown Court.

I also accessed the drop-in and the safe room, it was here I felt an overwhelming empathy to help and support all these men and boys who share these similar experiences and aftermath of trauma.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

As a greater Manchester organisation, I would like to see more safe rooms and drop-in support available at different locations throughout Greater Manchester. I would also like the men and boys we support to feel safe and welcome in their own community, free from guilt and shame that does not belong to them.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

You can’t change the past but you are in control of your future. You have the power of choice to change this if you wish. Be kind to yourself and others.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

I think the range of diverse people that reside here, It’s a place with lots of hidden gems, mills with cinemas, restaurants and bars with views across the city, the music, the buskers on Market Street, Central Library and all the amazing buildings. The creative scene and the strength of the people together to overcome anything that life throws their way.

default person

Clinical Supervisor

Trauma Informed Therapist
Outspoken

Trauma Informed Therapist

Karen’s journey begins in Greater Manchester,  in the wonderful Wigan.

Aged 12 she had a desire follow in her Grandad’s footsteps and join St John Ambulance which, voluntary at first, but later it became a paid job where she taught and assessed first aid in many settings all over Greater Manchester. Along the way this extended into working in college, teaching and assessing first aid college staff and students enrolled on other courses. Doing this provided two more steppingstones and openings. Staff development provided the chance of more training courses in teaching and a link with Universities of UCLAN and Huddersfield where Karen gained Cert Ed and a Batchelors Degree with (Hons) in Training and Education.

Whilst delivering first aid training in a beauty and holistic setting in 1995 it was decided that that this would be another area of interest and many more courses were studied. In 1996, Karen set up in business which ran successfully for over 25 yrs.

When her mum sadly passed away in 2014 and not knowing who to talk to professionally, this experience led her to train to become a Counsellor/ Psychotherapist. During this course there was the chance of joining the Samaritans and an interest in many roles the main one being the BPSO for the prison team, training prisoners to become listeners within the prison setting where she found a way of helping those in prison to grow and develop.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

The reputation and respect are second to none at Survivors Manchester. When I heard of a chance of a possible role here, despite pondering whether to retire or not, I grabbed the opportunity with both hands. The role is the “gift that keeps on giving” and I wanted to be part of it. It is a privilege to work with a great team within the criminal justice setting.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

Continue to give males a voice, help them to be heard! Men’s feelings need to be encouraged and their emotions understood. The offer of non-judgmental support is here, and it is unconditional.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

The people of Manchester have hearts of gold, they are generous, strong, and loyal. Please help to keep the service of Survivors Manchester alive in this wonderful city.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

The shops!!!! of course, the allure of the bright vibrant city life. I feel excited and fuzzy inside whenever I visit Manchester.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Education & Training
Development Worker

Education & Training Development Worker

Kieron has a real love for music and has spent a lot of his time writing songs and collaborating with other musicians from around the world. Kieron is also a high school teacher of religion, with a passion for leading people into a truer understanding of religion and God. He is very enthusiastic when it comes to helping others extend their learning, and that is a large part of the reason why he has joined us as part of the Survivors Manchester team.

Kieron spent a couple of years volunteering on our Expert Advisory Panel, but as a teacher, Kieron’s passion naturally extends into helping young people but specifically helping educate young people about abuse and how boys and men are also in need of support. Kieron initiated and helped plan our first ever workshop within schools, and he can’t wait to work further to raise awareness and deliver preventative training to young people.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

I accessed the service a few years back, and after years seeking help from other services, I was amazed at the service offered here. I knew at the end of my time with them that I’d really like to give back in some way and join them in their mission to help as many boys and men as possible.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Greater Manchester?

I would love to see Survivors Manchester become well known within the schools throughout Greater Manchester. I am convinced that if we raise awareness early, we will prevent some abuse from ever starting. I would also really like to see Survivors Manchester expand its Training and Development throughout Greater Manchester. The more people we can reach and teach the better! Abuse happens in all areas of life, so there is no excuse for us to section ourselves off to one corner of Manchester, or to one singular professional area. The reality is, there are both young and old people in need of education regarding male sexual abuse, so I would love to make that education readily available for everybody in need of it.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

Yes – you are important to our mission! The very fact you know that we exist, is a lifeline to those who may confide in you about their own abuse. Don’t be afraid to share our social media posts, because you never know who may be in need within your own friendship groups. You may not have time to volunteer, but raising awareness is something you can do at the click of a button.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

I’ve always loved Manchester; the music scene, the vibrancy of city life, and not forgetting the noticeable commitment to one another. I’m thrilled to now be in a position where I can help those who call Manchester their home too.

Clinical Lead & Therapist
OUT Spoken

OUT Spoken Clinical Lead

Lee spent most of his adult life as a professional musician, playing across the world. His awareness of his own ‘wound’ led him to engage in personal therapy over many years and then, eventually to train to become a therapist.

One of his placements was for Mankind UK, a charity working with survivors of sexual abuse, and they had an opening to work in the local prison. He was moved and inspired by the need for the men in there to speak out about their experience of trauma, and he decided to focus on working as a therapist in prisons from then on

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

I had met Duncan years ago as we had worked with the same client and, when I saw the advert for the role of Clinical lead in prisons, I realised I had to apply, as it was the culmination of my thought process over the last 20 years.

I knew about Survivors Manchester and had referred many people to it over the years. I was aware of the work it does and now am privileged to be a part of it.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

More broadly across the north-west as well as Manchester, I want to see Survivors Manchester successfully established in the all the prisons for years to come, providing gold-standard quality therapeutic interventions.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

Break the Silence when YOU feel ready and until, we’ll be waiting patiently here for you

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

Old Trafford cricket ground. I’m from ‘dan sarf’ but have fallen in love with the north-west. Manchester is a glorious city and, as a musician, I played in Manchester many times and had more than a few good nights out.

Trauma Informed Therapist

Trauma informed therapist

Nisaa qualified as a Psychotherapist in 2018 from the University of Salford. After qualifying Nisaa worked within 5 schools across the North West as a Mental Health Practitioner and supported children and family through intervention. Nisaa worked with many different cultures/religions and created workshops for teachers and parents to explore the different cultures and how we view Mental Health around the word.

Working within the volunteer sector to support Adults and children has been a big part of Nisaa’s journey as it allowed Nisaa to work with different walks of life and really see the different ways to work as a practitioner, tailoring her skills to support cultures when needed. Volunteering at University clinics, ChildLine and Schools gave Nisaa experience with different ages and settings which helped her understand the importance of adapting the way we work to support clients.

Nisaa has always been passionate about supporting people and wanting to make a real difference, therefore Nisaa proudly joined Survivors Manchester in the new year of 2021.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

I have known about Survivors Manchester since I started University and I have always wanted to work for an organisation where we focus on a group of people that do not get much attention. Duncan and the Survivor’s team have dedicated their time to support the Men of Manchester and I wanted to be apart of this journey. Survivors Manchester has created change and I hope to continue to add to this by working alongside the Survivors team

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Greater Manchester?

To keep doing what they are doing! Supporting the lads from all backgrounds and giving them a space at Survivors Manchester

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

Let’s break the silence and lets work together to make change 

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

The people, the sense of community and just having a laugh, Manchester is truly an amazing place and I am proud to call it home. I know If one place can say ‘do one’ to the Stigma behind Mental Health Manchester can do it!

Trauma Informed Therapist

Trauma informed therapist

Njal joined Survivors Manchester back in November 2020 as a Trauma Informed Therapist. Njal completed 4 years Advanced Training in Transactional Analysis in 2018 and in 2019 became a Registered Member of the BACP.

For four years, prior to working for Survivors Manchester, Njal was a Counsellor at Beacon Counselling where he worked with both male and female Adults. His work included supporting those who experience anxiety and depressive symptoms, suicidal ideations, and processing grief.

Along with Njal’s therapeutic experience, he also has a degree in BA (Hons) Criminology and Psychology, which he graduated in back in 2005.

Prior to working as a Therapist, Njal brings with him a wealth of Managerial experience within the Insurance sector, which took place over a period of 15 years. Such a role involved managing the wellbeing and welfare of individuals in large teams in an office-based environment.

Njal feels warmth and authenticity go a long way to creating a safe and secure setting for all clients; the Therapeutic Relationship is a vital part of the healing journey.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

The concept of ‘manliness’ as being strong and in control can mean it is seen as a weakness to ask for help. If men feel a pressure to appear strong, this can stop them from opening up, for fear of being ridiculed as being vulnerable and weak. Instead, all men should be actively encouraged to express all feelings and their experiences, so as to break the stigma.

The safe space, voice and empowerment Survivors Manchester is giving to those sexually abused males in order to “Break their Silence” is awe inspiring; something I really embraced when I first reached out to join the organisation.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Greater Manchester?

To continue to grow as an organisation and shout from the rooftops “we are here!” Such a voice will provide us with the scope to reach more people in Manchester and beyond.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

It takes a lot of courage to speak out, but when you’re ready we will be here to listen……it’s never too late to “Break YOUR Silence”!

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

Manchester is my home; it was where I was born and have lived all my life!

It has everything you could want (apart from the weather). Great restaurants, nightlife, fantastic gig venues, the birthplace of many top bands, plus it is also the home of the best football team around, who just so happen to wear red.

Trauma Informed Therapist
Outspoken

Trauma informed therapist

Rob left University in 2011 and began working as a Sports Coach in and around Manchester. During this time, some of his work involved him worked alongside Manchester’s Youth Offending Team, offering daily sports activities to the young people they were working with.

After 3 years, he became the Sports Coach/PE Lead for 2 Primary Schools in Salford and continued with this amazing role for 7 years. He began training to be a counsellor in 2016. The incentive to study counselling was to be able to support young people more, as Rob believes that the earlier people can begin to recover from traumatic life experiences, the more fulfilled a life they can lead as a result. His own life experience supports this belief.

Sport was a great way to connect with those children and young people who may find it difficult to participate in other areas of life because of what they have experienced, but for those where Education is a part of the problem, there has to be another angle to approach from. Rob believes therapy to be that angle. Rob recently qualified with a Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling in August, 2021 and Survivors Manchester is his first employment in this new and exciting career for him. As a person who is extremely passionate about helping the younger/next generation(s), he also found great benefit in working with clients of all ages during his placement and that trauma and recovery do not have age limits. This made him decide to not be as restrictive with the age groups he will work with, but instead focus on a specific area of therapy, which is Trauma Informed.

Now being employed as part of the OUT Spoken team, Rob feels as though he has come full circle, and in being able to work with and support, those that find themselves on the other side of the law, he now has an opportunity to continue where his journey initially started and potentially make a difference to those who are often forgotten about.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

Very simply, the opportunity to work for Survivors Manchester presented itself to me, as I was just about to qualify as a therapist, and it was just too good of an offer to not take. The work Survivor’s Manchester do is extremely important and the chance to go into prisons and really be of service to the men in there is a gift and an honor. I feel very fortunate to be beginning my career with such an amazing organisation, actually out there doing important work.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Greater Manchester?

To continue the fantastic work they are already doing and keep building the OUT Spoken Team so that more Therapists can go into prisons and support the men and boys that are in there.

I am also a huge advocate of living a healthy way of life as I believe it contributes massively to how you feel. So I’d like to be able to integrate taking care of yourself, eating well, drinking water, exercise and doing things you enjoy into the therapeutic process. I feel Survivor’s Manchester is a place which holds similar values in that respect and offers its staff the freedom to bring these ideas into the work that we do if appropriate.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

Yes, I’m no expert, but I believe that healing is a life-long journey. One that is initially terrifying, will be one of the hardest things you’ve ever done and will sometimes feel like a constant battle where continuing to go on seems impossible at times. But if you go at your own pace, accept the help that is on offer to you and remember that you are a Survivor and deserve to be OK, it will be the most worthwhile thing you could ever imagine and life can be there for living. It all starts by taking that first step. 

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

A mixed lamb kharai with keema and peas from Kabana on Cheetham Hill Road with a couple of chapattis and a bowl of salad!
No, in all honesty, Manchester is home! I’m a proud Manc. I walk Manc. I talk Manc. And I love the way Manc’s never apologise for who they are. The fact we ask people we know or multiple strangers daily “Yalright?” is evidence that we care about one another and generally speaking, if you ask somebody in Manchester for help, there is a good chance you’ll get it.

sh accountancy

Finance Manager

Snr Trauma Informed Therapist

Senior Trauma Informed Therapist

Sasha began his career as a trauma informed therapist working with men who were experiencing suicidal thoughts and feelings. While working with his client’s he began to see how men and woman differ in therapy, such as how male clients relate to their mental health and historical trauma compared to female clients. However, he saw how men and women were similar in what they wanted and expected from their therapist—someone who validates and respects them.

In his therapy work, Sasha involves the client in the therapeutic process from start to finish and draws on a number of different modalities that best suit the needs of the client. Some people may only require techniques to help manage difficult emotions, whereas others might just need someone to listen to them. Some may need long term support, whereas others may just need a few sessions. No two sessions or clients are the same.

Sasha has delivered training on trauma to other services to advocate for a trauma informed approach when working with clients but also to challenge the stereotype of what society typically believes a survivor of abuse looks and acts like.

Sasha has worked in a number of settings such as University, LGBT organisations, domestic abuse charities, as well as drug and alcohol services.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

I have been following the amazing work of Survivors Manchester for quite some time, so when I had the opportunity to apply for a role here, I jumped at the chance! Survivors Manchester is a service built by some courageous people, and to be a part of the team is truly humbling.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

To keep doing what Survivors Manchester does best, provide the very best service and continue to raise awareness of a topic that many other services are too afraid to have!

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

I have worked with a wide range of people who struggled with their anger, drink, drugs, the job lot. All of that does not stop you from DESERVING help. When you are ready to talk, there will always be someone ready to listen.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

I used to work in hotels for a time, and a guest once said that ‘You have to look up to fully appreciate Manchester’. From the architecture to the culture, to the night life, to the people, Manchester is unique in every way. I love this city.

Admin Assistant

Admin Assistant

I was born and have lived in Manchester nearly all my (very short) life. Most of which I have spent either competing or teaching gymnastics, before moving to Sheffield in 2018 to study Architecture at university.  It was at university where I realised this career was very far removed from the type of work that I wanted to be involved with.

This meant that at the beginning of 2020, I left university and moved back to Manchester, where I found myself working in administration for a mental health charity.

This area of work felt much more comfortable, and having volunteered and fundraised in the past for charities such as Manchester Mind, this sense of familiarity prompted me to look for other opportunities with similar values to myself, and help me to expand my knowledge and experience of the voluntary / charity sector.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

I heard about Survivors Manchester and the important work they do through both friends + family that had worked either for Survivors or alongside Survivors, everything said about them had been overwhelmingly and inspiringly positive. I decided to work for Survivors MCR because I feel passionate about the people who the service reach and ultimately has a life-changing impact on. I thought that the most valuable way for me to understand the impact of such important work and the effects this work will have on both the individual and wider community was to join them. I am very proud and ultimately delighted to be part of their team.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

I can only say that I would love to see Survivors MCR continue the work they are doing to break the silence on sexual violence against men, working to dismantle the harmful stereotype that men cannot be victims, as it is this stereotype that may sometimes discourage men from getting the help they deserve – and the help that Survivors MCR offer.

I think increasing their already prominent online presence would be great to see, and may support them in reaching more young people.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

My message would be to try and accept that which they cannot change but to never stop trying to change that which they cannot accept. There will always be someone who wants to listen, so never fear speaking up or speaking out. And really, to join Survivors MCR in their aim to break the silence on sexual violence against men, help create a constant open conversation and build a safe environment for every male survivor. This is for them.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

The art, the music, the culture, the architecture, the bars, the parks and everything in between. I love everything about Manchester bar the football teams, the rain and the 42-bus route in rush hour. But above all, my favourite thing must be how unapologetically proud Mancunians are (and rightly so). There is a never-ending supply of passion that flows throughout, it is totally awe-inspiring – nowhere else would be worthy of calling home.

simon hedges

Trauma Informed Therapist

Trauma Informed Therapist

Simon joined us in February 2017 and is working for us as a Trauma Informed Therapist. Simon completed a 4 year Diploma in Transactional Analysis in 2017 and became a Registered Member of the BACP later that year. Prior to working for us, Simon worked for 42nd Street as a counsellor working with 14-25 year olds in Manchester. His work included supporting young people with anxiety and depressive symptoms, processing grief, eating disorders, and attachment-related issues.

Prior to working as a therapist, Simon spent time working in various roles in the social care sector supporting people with mental health, learning disabilities and acquired brain injury. He also provided training for staff working in these roles.

Simon brings elements of mindfulness, existential, and relational approaches to his work. Simon believes in ‘walking alongside’ clients in order to explore their story and understand their needs. In this way, Simon looks to find the goals and outcomes that are most important for that client at that time.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

I have always had a real passion for working with men, particularly in the field of mental health. I feel, from my own personal experiences, that there is a great deal of shame related to men speaking openly about their mental health which keeps them silent and perpetuates the suffering. As Survivors Manchester is all about breaking the silence of men who have been sexually abused, it felt like a perfect fit with my own values.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

I’d like to see us grow as an organisation so we can do more of what we already do so well and reach more people. I’d like to see us engage with those communities that, for whatever reason, rarely engage with mental health services. I think it’s also important we take a role in engaging with other services and the general public to understand the impact of sexual abuse so that it becomes a conversation across the region rather than one that only happens in the therapy room.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

It’s never too late to speak out and ask for some support, whatever that means for you. Every journey begins with a first step.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

The people and the food! I do my best to have plenty of both in my life

Professional membership: Registered Member of BACP

stuart avery

Trauma Informed Therapist

Trauma Informed Therapist

Stuart comes from a creative background, having worked for many years as a professional musician and then later as a sound engineer and producer in recording studios and concert venues. Other than music, Stuart’s big passion is people! He was drawn to counselling after two very positive experiences as a client in therapy during some very challenging episodes in his life.

Following this he trained as a counsellor, gaining an MA qualification from Manchester University, and has been working therapeutically with all sorts of different people and issues ever since.

Stuart identifies as an integrative therapist, and strongly believes in a flexible and creative approach to working with people, where the therapeutic style and approach is fitted to each person and their unique way of experiencing the world. He has worked in two charitable organisations prior to Survivors Manchester as a counsellor with a whole range of issues including anxiety, depression, trauma, sexual abuse, OCD, self-harm and suicidal ideation, anger management, self-esteem, sexuality and identity issues.

Working as a trauma-focused therapist is a natural progression from Stuart’s other creative activities (he is still an active musician, sound engineer and producer). He believes that every encounter with a client is a golden opportunity to create a meaningful, authentic connection, and this relationship becomes the vehicle for change and a playground for exploring the many different and often paradoxical aspects of ourselves. He believes that allowing those unspeakable experiences and thoughts to be voiced and explored in a safe, supportive environment is central to successful therapy, and this where their effect and impact can be reduced or transformed into something more helpful.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

Survivors Manchester is an amazing charity doing very important work and supporting an under-represented group struggling with some very challenging issues. It is an area I am very passion about working in and I wanted to bring my energy and counselling skills to working with this group of people. The welcoming and supportive ethos of Survivors is a great fit with my personal values and very close to my heart. The effects and fallout from childhood sexual abuse, and adult rape and sexual assault are devastating and far-reaching.

It takes immense courage for survivors to speak out and rise above the legacy of the abuse, and being able to walk alongside some of these brave people on their journey for a while and be involved in some way in their recovery feels very important to me.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

I would love to see the organisation continue to grow in the way that it has done over the last year, and eventually provide a service nationally all over the country. There is a real demand for the service that Survivors delivers and it is great to see that acknowledged and supported by IAPT and those that fund the service. I’m also really pleased that the it’s supporting Greater Manchester Police in the development of the Accord Programme through ‘Change Project‘, a seperate organistion aimed at those who have been abused and are at risk of offending. I believe this is a really important part of the overall picture of reducing offending and making society a safer place for everybody. I hope this area of the organisation continues to grow alongside supporting as many survivors of abuse as possible.

Finally I hope Survivors Manchester will keep speaking out about male sexual abuse and rape and help to encourage others to do the same, and break down the stigma around this subject.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

I have lived in Manchester for almost 15 years and I can say without question there is a lot of love in this city! So my message for Greater Manchester residents is…: You are great! Keep being you, support those that need it, challenge the things you don’t want to accept loudly and passionately, and carry on being the wonderful, diverse and energetic community that makes this city a great place to live!

Mancunians are not known for keeping quiet, and it would be good to see our voices collectively being used as much as possible to raise awareness of the impact and existence of all forms of sexual abuse and violence. Never be scared to have those difficult conversations, as that is what breaks down stigma and ignorance and encourages awareness.

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

Undoubtedly the people! Wonderfully diverse, full of beans and sometimes more than a little bit eccentric, but the spirit of this city is second to none. I sometimes go swimming at the Manchester Aquatic Centre, and there is a huge graphic on the wall down there that says: “This is Manchester… we do things differently round here”! That sums it up for me.

I also love the music scene in Manchester, and have lost count of the number of superb gigs I have been to here. And The Sugar Junction in The Northern Quarter do the best Eggs Royale and Oreo Milkshake you can get your hands on!

Subo-Nadarajah

Trauma Informed Therapist

Trauma informed therapist

Subo starting her career as a counsellor. However, joint the corporate world for a very different experience in the world of management training. However, knew that her heart was always in psychotherapy and decided to embark on her training in becoming a psychologist. She is trained in existential psychotherapy, Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapy and EMDR. She is a registered member of the BACP. Subo has experience working with people who have suffered trauma and torture due to war in various charities in London and the NHS. She also has work extensively with people who have symptoms of PTSD, anxiety, depression and grief.

Why did you decide to work for Survivors Manchester?

Having worked with a majority of men in the past I realised how much harder it is for men to speak about their problems and feeling due to various reasons (Shame, guilt, self-image to state a few). I understand form my own personal experience what little help men have and access. The ethos of Survivors Manchester and the way in which they work gives me a sense of privilege and honour to be a part of.

What would you like to see Survivors Manchester do in Manchester?

I would love for it grow as an organisation and reach people from all walks of life within Manchester and far beyond.

Do you have a message for Greater Manchester residents?

You are not alone!

What’s your favourite thing about Manchester?

Being new to Manchester I love the people! Really warm and welcoming and feels like home (being so far away from it).

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