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Become a Member of Blue Knot Foundation and support adult Australians who have survived childhood trauma and abuse.

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“I have attended one of your workshops for Health Professionals and found it to be one of the most enlightening and useful trainings I have attended. In particular, I really got an understanding of how to best deal with people in crisis related to past trauma.”


“The workshop was outstanding - could be used for all practitioners no matter what their discipline. I would hope that you would promote it among psychologists - particularly because the focus was on "abuse" without putting the various types of abuse into boxes.”


“I recommend Blue Knot Foundation's trauma training to every professional, worker of all setting, survivor, and carer. The better trained the earlier the diagnosis and a better chance for survivor recovery.”


“I would highly recommend Blue Knot Foundation training. The information and research is impressive and relevant; the facilitator knew her stuff, was engaging and provided relevant examples.”


Impacts of Childhood Abuse

 Cost to the Community

A review of the consequences of child abuse indicates that costs can be broadly categorised under the headings: human cost of those abused, long-term human and social cost, cost of public intervention, and cost of community contributions (Kids First Foundation, 2003). The long term human and social cost include mental disability, increased medical service usage, chronic health problems, lost productivity, juvenile delinquency, adult criminality, homelessness, substance abuse and intergenerational transmission of abuse (Kids First Foundation, 2003).

Child sexual abuse has been found to be a key factor in the cause and continuation of youth homelessness with between 50-70% of young people within Supported Accommodation Assistance Programs having experienced childhood sexual assault (van Loon & Kralik, 2005b).

Consequently, it is not surprising that childhood abuse is associated with increased healthcare utilisation and costs. According to NSW Health (1998), survivors of child sexual abuse accounted for 34% of all presentations across the mental health sector in 1998. Survivors of child sexual abuse constitute the greatest number of women requesting services both from the NGO and mental health sectors (Henderson, 2006). In addition, research suggests that approximately 35% to 70% of female mental health patients self-report, if asked, a childhood history of abuse (Briere, 2004).

Walker et al. (1999) examined health care utilisation in the US and found that women who reported a history of child sexual abuse were more likely to visit hospital emergency facilities, had annual total health care costs significantly higher than those without abuse histories and that these differences were observed even after excluding the costs of mental health care.

In a National report published by the Kids First Foundation (2003) highlighting the cost of child abuse and neglect in Australia, it was estimated that the cost to Australian taxpayers was approximately $5 billion per annum. The long term human cost and cost of public intervention was estimated at three quarters of the annual cost, and the long term human and social cost at $2 billion per annum (Kids First Foundation, 2003).

In 2007, it is estimated that there were 130,237 children who were abused or neglected for the first time in Australia. This figure could be as high as 490,000 children. Based on these numbers, the projected cost of child abuse and neglect that will be incurred by the Australian community over the lifetime of children who were first abused or neglected in 2007 was $13.7 billion, but could be as high as $38.7 billion (Taylor et al., 2008).

A study by the United Kingdom National Commission of Inquiry into the Prevention of Abuse estimated that the cost of child protection services, as well as the additional mental health and correctional services associated with child abuse, was over one billion pounds per year in England and Wales (cited in Kids First Foundation, 2003). Similar figures also emerged from an American study, "Prevent Child Abuse" which

Conservatively claimed that US$94 billion was spent annually in response to child abuse (cited in Kids First Foundation, 2003).


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“Blue Knot Foundation has a key role to play in the building of community capacity in care provision to those who have experienced childhood abuse and trauma in any environment.”

NIALL MULLIGAN Manager, Lifeline Northern Rivers

“I think Blue Knot Foundation is a fantastic support organisation for people who have experienced childhood trauma/abuse, for their families/close friends and for professionals who would like to learn how to more effectively work with these people.”

Psychologist Melbourne

“It's such a beautiful thing that you are doing. Helping people to get through this.”


“It was only last September when I discovered the Blue Knot Foundation website and I will never forget the feeling of support and empathy that I received when I finally made the first phone call to Blue Knot Helpline, which was also the first time I had ever spoken about my abuse.”


"At last there is some sound education and empathetic support for individuals and partners impacted by such gross boundary violations.”


Contact Us

Phone: 02 8920 3611
Email: admin@blueknot.org.au
PO Box 597 Milsons Point NSW 1565
Hours: Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm AEST

Blue Knot Helpline
Phone: 1300 657 380
Email: helpline@blueknot.org.au 
Hours: Mon-Sun, 9am-5pm AEST

For media comment, please contact:
Dr Cathy Kezelman AM
0425 812 197 or ckezelman@blueknot.org.au

For media enquiries, please contact: 
Jo Scard
0457 725 953 or jo@fiftyacres.com