Delivering circles of support and accountability to protect communities from sexual harm and sexual reoffending


Has someone close to you been involved in online sexual offending?

There is now FREE support in Plymouth, Devon and Cornwall for the partners, relatives and friends of individuals who have downloaded indecent images of children.

Ernesettle in Plymouth is piloting a ground breaking new approach to prevent child sexual abuse. ‘Together for Childhood’ brings together the local community and partner agencies to prevent harmful sexual behaviour, drawing on examples of best practice from around the world. It is one of only five NSPCC pilot areas in the country.
The Ernesettle community recognises that everyone has a part to play in preventing child sexual abuse. It is passionate about keeping children safe and there is already sexual abuse prevention work being carried out by a thriving network of community groups.

‘Together for Childhood’ includes work with communities and schools on early identification and support, providing direct services for children, young people and families, and public awareness campaigns. It builds on existing work and safeguarding relationships across the city, whilst also forging new connections and opportunities.

One local organisation involved is Circles South West, a charity that specialises in working with people who have sexually offended. They also provide support services for the partners, families and friends of people who have sexually offended online. ‘Inform’ is a 5 session (5 week) educational-support programme for the partners, relatives and friends of people who have sexually offended online. Licenced by The Lucy Faithfull Foundation, Circles South West is the Approved Provider of ‘Inform’ in Devon, Cornwall, Wiltshire and Dorset.

Speaking on behalf of Circles South West, local Coordinator Diane Bygrave explains that:

“following the arrest, caution or conviction of an individual for downloading indecent images of children, their partner, family members and friends are often left feeling confused and angry. They are scared about what will happen next and often have no-one to discuss this with.”

“The aim of the ‘Inform’ educational-support programme is to provide them with a better understanding of how and why their ‘loved one’ or friend has behaved in this damaging and risky way, providing them with the knowledge and skills to be part of the process of helping their partner/relative/friend stay safe online. Meeting others in the same position can be a very helpful process and they often stay in touch and support each-other after the group sessions end.”

Thanks to funding from the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon and Cornwall, the ‘Inform’ programme is free. We encourage local people to join up for 5 sessions over 5 weeks. Places are now available on Inform in Plymouth, Devon and Cornwall.

To book your place or find out more contact Jamie Stephenson at Circles South West on 07423 267521 or at

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