Upstream Educator

The Black Box for FDSV Education

About Us

I’m often asked by members of the community and community groups



We are a specialist, educator collaborating with local community to UPSKILL in the specialised knowledge, strategies and solutions of Personal, Online, Intimate Partner, Family, Financial and Economic Abuse, also known as Domestic Violence.  DV comes in many forms, and is defined as a pattern of abusive behaviour that interferes with someone else with whom they have a relationship with.   

When we provide a space with a Trauma Informed Approach, Care and Practice that supports victims and survivors of

  • Intimate Partner Violence (IPV), including sexual.
  • Coercive Control (CC),
  • Assault, Stalking, Harassment, Intimidation, Threats, (Assault and other S.H.I.T)
  • Humiliation, Online, Image Based and Tech Facilitated Abuse,
  • Financial Coercion and Abuse,
  • Economic Sabotage, Restriction or Exploitation or
  • Extortion
  • and over 136 other forms of abusive behaviours (a non-exhaustive list and in combination or in the absence of violence)

by someone (the perpetrator of VCAN) who says they care about and love them, they may disclose and seek help for a situation that is beyond their capacity using 

  • language to express anxiety (fear), depression (hopelessness), distress (trauma) or a crisis.
  • isolation, social withdrawal, avoidance or manipulation to avoid consenquences from their perpetrator
  • justifications, excuses, defences or self blame in relation to circumstances, situations and events where abuse and violence has been used
  • gently enquire, question or raise a concern that is universal in context, or seeking support for someone else like a child or friend
  • the workplace as protection or respite
  • technology to connect or find support including hotlines, agencies, apps, alternative reporting platforms or google search.

And their situation, often complex and layered, might also be beyond your capacity. So when it’s time to respond and refer,

  • listen openly and without judgement, 
  • stay curious as to their strategy to stay safe

consider these points of concern that establish:

  • awareness,  ‘that’s sounds really difficult for you, and alot to go through, is there something I can do?’
  • urgency,      ‘
  • support available and needed.

which maintains respect and dignity, builds trust and understanding and allows you to appropriately refer, 


  1. The universal referrals are known and funded Hotlines to talk freely and openly about the situation, reflect, obtain advice and get referrals.
  2. The direct referral is to a local DFV services, who are funded with specialists to support reporting, leaving and recovery.
  3. The informal referral is a trusted friend, family member, workplace, community group or online portal.
  4. The intimate referral is counsellor, general practitioner, solicitor, investigator or police who are bound to protect your indentity, information and safety if provided with a disclosure. 

The only exceptions to the intimate referral is where there has been or is likely to be violence and abuse, where there is a significant risk of harm or impact on the safety of yourself or another person, especially children.  If cases are referred to systems and processes live civil or child protection, criminal or family law jurisdictions it’s important to know the function of these processes. 

77% of survivors said they would call the police. Police respond  and intervene in emergencies, when incidents are reported and in some cases proactively engage for compliance.


How Being Trauma-Informed Improves Criminal Justice System Response, which is a four-hour curriculum tailored for criminal justice professionals designed to:

  • Increase understanding of trauma.
  • Create an awareness of the impact of trauma on behavior.
  • Develop trauma-informed responses.


With barriers like shame, system gaps, gendered abuse drivers,

influencing and contributing factors,

we can help you hold the space

while they find the words,

build self-worth and

navigate a way forward.


With access to various training, education and professional development workshops and bespoke training packages, The Upstream Educator is the one stop destination where you can

  • read the research summaries and meet their authors,
  • talk to the specialists and gain advice regarding jurisdictions, thresholds, strategy, outcomes and personal and career development, including self care
  • put together your own training schedule, workshop sessions and education modules for the outcomes you are looking for.

We have seen more specialist research, strategic frameworks, policy initiatives, legislative implementations; introductions, updates and changes to End Domestic and Family Violence, with the goal of acheiving this in a generation and it was recently announced that education is the key to preventing the trauma of violence, changing the social attitudes, behaviours and choices that enable, condone and perpetuate abusive behaviour at home, in public and in the workplace :

“Gendered Violence is, the overwhelming identification of male perpetrators of violence’ 

“Disproportionate Reporting of Violence Against Women and Young Girls and Violence Against Men”





Prevention is taking what we know, hear and see, from the victim and survivor stories that have been shared, and creating immersive educative, informative, and enlightening workshop style sessions that address the known and unknown Incidents, Issues, Concerns and Impacts (IICI) and integrate the learnings and expertise of specialised Subject Matters to:

  • How to identify and recognise Violence, Coercion, Abuse and Neglect. (Screening tools, risk assessments, survivor narrative mining, indicative trauma indicators, victim’s fears)
  • When and how to intervene, respond and support victims and survivors of VCAN. (Gendered Violence Strategies and Solutions, Resources, Referrals and Response Models)
  • Who and when to respond to the types, forms and complexity of VCAN. (Intergrated Responses with various agencies, government departments, resource management, intervention and programs)

Under the collective umbrella of The Upstream Educator we deliver a deep understanding of coercive control, the legislation, it’s application in law, evidence gathering and investigations in conjunction with the Waterfall Wellbeing Group to provide consistently updated, reliable and relevant content that supports the sector, the community and individuals.  We can do this using a number of trainers who in their experience and employment have gained insight and understandings into Trauma Informed, Victim Focused, Shame Sensitive Practices.