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Are you under 13?

At the SARC, we are here to help you and will support you whether the assault took place recently or in the past.


Your body belongs to you, especially your private parts (the bits that go under your swimsuit) and no one should ask to see or touch them. Sometimes a doctor, nurse or family members might have to. But they should always explain why, and ask you if it’s OK first. Remember, what’s in your pants belongs only to you.

No one should ever make you do things that make you feel embarrassed or uncomfortable. If someone asks to see or tries to touch you underneath your clothing say ‘NO’ – and tell someone you trust and like to speak to.

You always have the right to say ‘no’ – even to a family member or someone you love. You’re in control of your body and the most important thing is how YOU feel. Telling someone you don’t want to do something can sometimes be difficult but if you want to say ‘No’, it’s your choice. It’s normal to worry about disappointing them, especially if you like them. But you don’t have to apologise or explain yourself. Just saying “no” or “stop” is enough. 

The law says that no child under 13 years old can agree, consent or say yes to any kind of sex.

You and your family will come to The Ferns along with the police officer and possible a social worker. It is a friendly place and we have special trained staff who will explain everything to you. You will be seen by our Paediatrically Trained Forensic Medical Examiner. She will weigh and measure you and check you over to see if any harm has been done to you. You can ask her any questions whilst you are here.

We have a special 3D Distraction TV in our medical room that you can watch during the examination. This plays different cartoons that you can see by wearing special glasses. Mum or dad can wear them too.

There is nothing to worry about when you come to The Ferns. It is a safe place. Nothing will be done to you that you do not want to happen.

What is abuse?

Your body is yours and no adult or child, even if they are part of your family, has the right to touch your private parts. This means the parts that go under your swimming costume.

  • If someone is touching or looking at the private part of your body
  • If you are having pictures or films taken of you or if you are being asked to take some of your clothes off
  • If you are being made to look or touch the private parts of somebody else
  • If you are being asked to watch other children or adults touch each other’s private parts.

If any of these things are happening to you or somebody you know you need to tell a grown up that you know and trust if you are too frightened to speak to anyone who knows you then you can call the police on 101 or Childline on 0800 1111.