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Survivors telling their stories

A royal commission is a public inquiry that investigates important matters. In 2012 a national royal commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse was started. In Melbourne the royal commission will hold private sessions until November to encourage victims to talk about what happened to them. Through private sessions survivors can talk about abuse directly to a commissioner. The royal commission has found children with a disability are more vulnerable to sexual abuse. If victims of sexual abuse want to tell their stories support is available. The royal commission can provide interpreters, communication support workers and counsellor.

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Peter Williams

Read all about Peter and the articles that he's written.

Featured article from Lifestyle

Looking at OCD with humour

A burned roof and chimney.

I suffer from obsessive compulsive disorder. It means that I worry a lot. I worry I will lose my home and precious possessions in a huge fire or robbery. I also worry that if I don't vacuum enough I will find a mouse in my home. But recently I have been learning to try and use humour to combat my worries and fears. In a group therapy session I learn to take the excessive worry and disaster stories to such an extreme that they become funny. In a strange sort of way I can have a laugh and hope to beat the obsessive compulsive disorder.

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Featured article from Lifestyle

Life cycles

Ray with a big smile riding a bike by a beach.

Ray Losionek sees his achievements in life as a result of a can do attitude. Initially he wanted to walk again after becoming a double amputee at the age of eight. The next stage was learning to ride a tricycle to improve his mobility. After marrying, owning his own business and raising four boys, Ray's love of cycling continues in his retirement. However, it's now about challenging himself, keeping fit and encouraging others in less fortunate countries.

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Featured article from Lifestyle

Surf access

Maureen and Jake in an all-terrain vehicle.

I had a wonderful experience with assistance getting into the surf to swim in Queensland recently. A lifeguard drove me to the water. I wondered if I could get this assistance at other beaches. I contacted Surf Life Saving Australia (SLSA) and learned there are different groups responsible for safety at every beach. The Beachsafe website had very helpful information on just about every beach in Australia. It has links to service providers for beaches. However, there is not accessibility or amenities information. Contacting the relevant Surf Life Saving Club, as I did, is probably the best place to start.

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Featured article from Arts

Kate's story of 'Madness'

The book cover.

Kate Richards is a Melbourne writer. Her first book is called Madness: A Memoir. It is about her experience with mental illness. Parts of the book are disturbing. It contains descriptions of depression, psychosis and self-harm. But there are moments of beauty too. Kate's book has won several awards. It is very well written and has had a positive response from readers. In the end, it is an important and uplifting story.

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