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Conclusion of the Truth Project

More than 5,000 people have shared their experiences of child sexual abuse with the Truth Project since it launched in 2015. We know the number of victims and survivors is far greater and not everyone has chosen, or felt able, to give their account.

Our aim is to bear witness to the collective voice of victims and survivors of child sexual abuse, and the impact their experiences have had on them. 

Their accounts and suggestions make a hugely important contribution to the work of the Inquiry to help protect children from abuse, now and in the future.

The Truth Project will draw to a close during 2021. We encourage you to share your experience before it concludes. See our video to find out more.

There’s a Q&A below. If you have any further questions or concerns, please call us on 0800 917 1000, email us at contact@iicsa.org.uk or write to us at Freepost IICSA Independent Inquiry. You don’t need a stamp.

Questions and answers

Why is the Truth Project drawing to a close?

The Truth Project is part of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse. The Inquiry was set up to investigate how organisations have failed to protect children. It will publish a final report in 2022 with findings and recommendations to help improve child protection.

The experiences that victims and survivors share with the Truth Project are central to this task. We need to conclude the Truth Project in 2021 so we can evaluate all the experiences shared, to inform the findings and recommendations in our final report.

How long do I have to share my experience?

The timescales vary, depending on how you choose to share your experience:

  • Experiences shared in writing. We need to receive these by mid–October 2021.

  • Sessions by telephone/video call. Please get in touch by the end of July 2021 to arrange a session by September 2021.

  • Sessions in person. These are now running again after a pause due to coronavirus. To help protect the health of Truth Project participants and staff, we have made some changes to sessions in person. Please get in touch by the end of December 2020 to arrange a session by March 2021.

Getting in touch does not commit you to anything - you can change your mind at any time about sharing your experience – but please make a note of the deadlines above.

Why are the sessions in person finishing earlier than the other ways of sharing?

Sessions in person require more advance planning, such as travel arrangements for participants, and suitable locations where you can share your experience. We can offer the opportunity to share your experience by video call or telephone, or in writing, nearer to the time that the Truth Project draws to a close. 

Whichever way you choose to share your experience, it will be heard and valued in the same way.

If there’s another lockdown, will the deadline be extended?

It won’t be possible to extend the time we offer sessions in person, because they require more advance planning. However, you can share your experience by video call or phone, or in writing, after the deadline for sessions in person has passed.

And if you already have a session in person booked, you will be able to change it to a  video call or phone session, or share in writing.

I contacted the Truth Project before but I didn’t stay in touch. Can I get in touch again now?

Yes. You may have booked a session or simply made some enquiries, but we’d be glad to hear from you again and encourage you to contact us. Please check the dates above, under ‘How long do I have to share my experience?’ and get in touch.

I’m not sure I’m ready to share yet, but I don’t want to miss the deadline. Should I apply anyway?

Yes, please get in touch. One of our team will be happy to talk through the options with you. This doesn’t commit you to anything and you can change your mind at any time. We would ask that you let us know if you need to cancel a session, as we may be able to offer it to someone else.

What if I miss the deadline to share my experience? Is there another organisation doing similar work with victims and survivors of child sexual abuse?

There is no other statutory inquiry into child sexual abuse in England and Wales and the Truth Project will draw to a conclusion. There are national services that offer support and advice to victims and survivors of child sexual abuse. Find out more here.

I’ve already shared my experience with the Truth Project but there’s more I want to say. Is it possible for me to do that?

Yes, you can share more in writing up to mid-October 2021.

How will experiences shared with the Truth Project make a difference for children?

Listening to your experiences and suggestions helps us recommend changes to protect children from abuse, now and in the future. It also helps us to better understand the long-term impact of abuse and support needs, as well as challenge our assumptions of child sexual abuse.

All experiences shared with the Truth Project will contribute to the Inquiry’s final report with our recommendations for change. This will be presented to the Government and published on www.iicsa.org.uk at the conclusion of the Inquiry in 2022. 

Your privacy

There are very limited circumstances where we tell anyone your name without your consent, for example if a child is currently at risk and we need to tell the police.