The Alliance Victim Support Group, working in conjunction with the National Office for Victims of Abuse in Dublin, offers access to counselling, educational, family tracing and other social services for all those who are eligible.
The counselling service is free, and is provided to those who were in residential institutions as children. This service is made available by the Irish Department of Health, through a programme that we and other support groups helped to devise.
Counselling is one the most important and keenly sought services for our members.
The Commission to Inquire Into Child Abuse gave very specific rulings about the need for victims to trace their families.
This service, known as the Origins: Information and Family Tracing Service, is provided to us by Barnardos, working especially for the National Office for Victims. There have already been some notable successes in this area.
The Alliance Victim Support Group does not provide direct financial support to victims or their families.
Rather, we advice and assist former residents of institutions and their family members in applying for any allowances and financial aid for which they are eligible. Any financial assistance that they receive comes from statutory and other bodies, and not directly from the Alliance.
In certain, exceptional, emergency situations in the past, we have assisted individuals financially.