“It’s never too late to seek help”

An MP has praised a Fife support agency providing frontline help for people affected by sexual and domestic abuse.

Lesley Laird, MP for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath, visited Kingdom Abuse Survivors Project (KASP) in Kirkcaldy, where she chatted with manager Joy Patrick and members of the team.

The project, which operates throughout Fife, provides free one-to-one confidential counselling and support to anyone over the age of 16 (both male and female) affected by childhood sexual abuse.

KASP is the only Fife group of its kind which offers free counselling and support in any location, including clients’ homes, and was recently awarded £120k National Lottery funding to employ a volunteer co-ordinator and deliver group work to support clients on the waiting list.

Lesley said: “Over recent years, a number of high-profile historical sex abuse cases have come to light which have inspired countless other survivors, many of whom have stayed silent about their own experiences for years, to come forward and seek support now.

“KASP has a waiting list but thanks to the National Lottery Fund the team will expand through recruitment of more qualified volunteers and bring those waiting times down.”

In addition, KASP offers a specialised service to men and women who have experienced or are experiencing domestic abuse.

Lesley added: “It was a privilege to meet Joy and the team and their dedication and commitment to helping abuse survivors across the Kingdom shines through.

“They offer an invaluable service, providing clients with a trusted safe relationship in which to talk through issues, build resilience and wellbeing, and be able to move forward in their lives.

“It’s never too late to seek help.”

Joy Patrick thanked Lesley for taking the time to visit and find out about the services that KASP offers throughout Fife.

She said: “Since its inception in 1995, KASP has provided support to 3548 people. In the last year KASP received 197 new referrals, of which 141 were female and 56 were male. 

“We offered 2538 face-to-face appointments offered over the year in a range of venues throughout Fife. KASP also provides training to further understand childhood sexual abuse to professionals throughout Scotland.”

Anyone who has experienced CSA or who is supporting someone who has experienced CSA can refer directly through contacting KASP, by telephone: 01592 644217 or email: info@kasp.org.uk

Pic: Joy Patrick (manager), Susan Hunter (administrator), Lynn Simpson (assistant manager), Lesley Laird MP, Gail Stevenson (counsellor)