When the Royal Commission was appointed, it was apparent to the Australian Government that many people (possibly thousands) would wish to tell us about their personal history of sexual abuse as a child in an institutional setting. As a result, the Australian Parliament amended the Royal Commissions Act 1902 (Cth) to create a process called a ‘private session’.
Each private session was conducted by one or two Commissioners and was an opportunity for a person to tell their story of abuse in a protected and supportive environment.
Written accounts allowed individuals who did not attend private sessions to share their experiences with Commissioners.
We have heard over 8,000 personal stories in private sessions of child sexual abuse in institutions and many also shared recommendations with Commissioners.
Donny's story read by an actor, takes place at a Lutheran Church-run Aboriginal mission in the 1960s when he was 8.
Hugh's story, read by an actor, features a Scout leader in the 1980s. Hugh was about 10.
Stan's story, read by an actor, takes place at a Christian Brothers' orphanage in the 1950s. Stan was 12.
Scott's story, read by an actor, takes place at a state-run hostel in the 1970s. Scott was 12.
Natalie's story, read by an actor, features a Catholic priest who visited her primary school in the 1980s. She was 11.
Margaret's story, read by an actor, takes place at a Salvation Army children's home in the 1960s. Margaret was 11.
Tracey's story, read by an actor, takes place at a Uniting Church school in the 1980s. Tracey was 15.
Carolyn's story, read by an actor takes place in 2000 at an Anglican boys' school where her son Tim was a student.